PRETORIA, SOUTH AFRICA - US First Lady Michelle Obama arrived for her 6 day visit in South Africa late last night.
Accompanied by her mother Marian Robinson, her daughters Malia and Sasha and her niece Leslie and her nephew Avery, Mrs Obama met members of Nelson Mandela’s family and his wife Graca Machel today.
Sello Hatang and Sahm Venter, the co-editors of the soon-to-be-released book, Nelson Mandela By Himself: The Authorised Quotations Book, presented Mrs Obama with an advanced copy.
Mr Hatang and the head of the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory Verne Harris showed the First Lady a display of archival items housed in the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory including prison desk calendars, notebooks and draft letters. She was introduced to Senior Archivist Razia Saleh.
Mrs. Obama expressed appreciation for the display, and said “You are doing very important work”.
Mrs Obama then proceeded to Mr Mandela’s house where she paid him a courtesy call.
US officials have billed the trip as her first major solo overseas trip as first lady. The focus will be on young women leaders and the legacy of the anti-apartheid struggle.
She will also give the keynote address at a conference of the Young African Women Leaders Forum, a two-day meeting of 75 women aged 16 to 30 who are playing leadership roles across the continent.