Africa is celebrating Nelson Mandela's 100th birthday

Africa is celebrating Nelson Mandela's 100th birthday

Talking about trade, Obama first expressed his belief in the right for smaller economic powers to access wealthier markets. The ex-president noted that in a moment filled with "disturbing headlines", it was imperative to "get some perspective". "We see it in the utter loss of shame in political leaders - where they utter a lie and then just double down and lie some more".

"You can be proud of your heritage without denigrating those of a different heritage", Obama added.

"And I believe that a world governed by such principles is possible and that it can achieve more peace and more cooperation in pursuits of a common good".

Obama, speaking to 15,000 people at a stadium in Johannesburg on Tuesday, gave an emotional address recalling the "wave of hope that washed through hearts all around the world" when Mandela was released from jail in 1990.

Obama's speech came one day after President Donald Trump met Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Finland and spurred outcry among lawmakers and government officials in the United States.

According to the Daily Mail, while referring to Trump, our forever FLOTUS said: "There's something wrong with us as women that we would make that choice... we can't be okay with mediocrity with men, but demand excellence from women".

Former US President Barack Obama speaks during his town hall meeting for the Obama Foundation at the African Leadership Academy in Johannesburg, South Africa, July 18, 2018.

Obama warned that advances made since Mandela was in office were being eroded, with far-right parties emerging in the West that advocate protectionism, closed borders and barely hidden racial nationalism.

"We now see much of the world threatening to return to an older, more risky more brutal way of doing business", Obama said.

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The health center is named after Nosekeni Nongaphi, Nelson Mandela's mother.

"Especially men", he said.

He took hits at Trump's insecurity and treasure trove of insulting nicknames in an aside that prompted knowing laughter from the crowd.

You can't do this if you just out of hand disregard what your opponent has to say from the start. "We have to believe in facts (another thing I didn't think I'd have to lecture about)", he said with a wry chuckle.

The trip is Obama's first to Africa since leaving office in early 2017.

"We are celebrating the centenary of Nelson Mandela in the 24th year of our democracy".

But South Africans must do more to fight for Mandela's values daily instead of engaging in symbolic gestures on his birthday, main opposition leader Mmusi Maimane with the Democratic Alliance said, adding that South Africa's "failed education is part of a system that locks black children out of opportunity".

The Johannesburg platform was carefully chosen to evoke the memory of Mr. Mandela, the South African liberation hero who had inspired Mr. Obama's first act of political activism: his decision as a young college student to join the anti-apartheid movement. I am simply stating the facts.

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