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Wednesday 3 September 2014

Nelson Mandela leaves $4m estate to family, staff and ANC

Reading expected to set off new round of squabbling among factious family members

Published 03/02/2014 | 12:10

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Former South African president Nelson Mandela, aged 95
Winnie Mandela
Winnie Mandela
Mandela: World's biggest statue unveiled
Mandela: World's biggest statue unveiled

FORMER South African President Nelson Mandela has left his $4.1m estate to family members, the ruling African National Congress, former staff and several local schools, according to a reading of his will today.

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Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke told reporters the division of the estate - provisionally valued at 46 million rand ($4.1m) excluding royalties - had been accepted by Mandela's family earlier on Monday with no contestation so far.

Mandela's third wife, Graca Machel, had waived her claims to the estate, Moseneke said at a news conference where he summarised parts of Mandela's 40-page will.

Moseneke said some of the estate would be split between three trusts set up by Mandela, including a family trust designed to provide for his more than 30 children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

The reading of Mandela's will was expected to set off another round of squabbling among members of his large and factious family over the anti-apartheid hero's financial legacy.

Mandela, who died in December at the age of 95, left behind an estate that includes an upscale house in Johannesburg, a modest dwelling in his rural Eastern Cape home province and royalties from book sales, including his autobiography, "Long Walk to Freedom".

More visibly, his legacy includes a potent political and moral brand that some of his grandchildren and great-grandchildren have already used to market everything from clothing to reality TV.

Some of his grandchildren have started a line of caps and sweatshirts that feature his image under the brand "Long Walk to Freedom". Two of his U.S.-based granddaughters starred in a reality television show called "Being Mandela".

Such aggressive marketing - as well as reports of fighting among family members over Mandela's money - have fuelled the impression in South Africa that some of the family members have exploited their famous relative.

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