July 18th, 2010
10:20 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama wishes Nelson Mandela a happy birthday

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama called Sunday for Americans to perform community service in honor of Nelson Mandela's 92nd birthday.

"On behalf of the United States, I wish Nelson Mandela a very happy 92nd birthday," Obama said in White House statement, referring to the former South African president who spent 27 years in prison before leading his country from white-minority rule to all-race democratic elections.

"We are grateful to continue to be blessed with his extraordinary vision, leadership, and spirit. And we strive to build upon his example of tolerance, compassion and reconciliation.," Obama said of Mandela, who is known around the world by his clan name, "Madiba."

Obama noted that Sunday was the first annual Nelson Mandela International Day, as proclaimed by the United Nations.

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Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. phoenix86

    As a gift to Nelson Mandela, perhaps the US can give him Obama to keep forever.

    July 18, 2010 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  2. snow

    I wonder, has nobummer bowed to mandela yet? If not, I guess he has not met him to date.

    July 18, 2010 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  3. vwrtb

    More good paying jobs please! Union jobs preferred!

    July 18, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  4. vic

    Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi , Martin Luther king Jr and mother Theresa are my heroes

    I join with our president to wish Nelson Mandela “ Happy birthday”

    July 18, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  5. thor

    Obama promised to try to bring us together as a nation but has done more to divide us since becoming president. Happy birthday,Mr.Mandela.

    July 18, 2010 11:56 am at 11:56 am |