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Nelson Mandela's granddaughter accuses Harry and Meghan of 'stealing her words to 'make millions'

Nelson Mandela’s granddaughter today attacked Harry and Meghan, accusing them of ‘stealing’ the statesman’s words and using his name to ‘make millions’.

Ndileka Mandela, 57, has criticized the Sussexes over the Netflix documentary Live To Lead, where the couple uses footage of the anti-apartheid activist leaving prison in 1990.

Harry says in the trailer for his latest film, part of his $100m (£83m) deal with the streaming giant: ‘That was inspired by Nelson Mandela’.

Ndileka said he was angry that the couple seemed to compare their own struggles in the royal family to his grandfather’s long walk to freedom, calling it “disturbing and tedious”.

She said: ‘This is chalk and cheese, there’s no comparison. I know the Nelson Mandela Foundation supported the initiative, but people have stolen grandfather quotes for years and used his legacy because they know his name sells – Harry and Meghan are no different from them.’

Harry says in trailer for his latest film, part of his $100m (£83m) deal with the streaming giant: 'That was inspired by Nelson Mandela'

Harry says in trailer for his latest film, part of his $100m (£83m) deal with the streaming giant: ‘That was inspired by Nelson Mandela’

Ndileka Mandela (left), pictured with sister Nandi Mandela (right) and son Luvuyo Madasa in London last month, has criticized the Sussexes for using their last name

Ndileka Mandela (left), pictured with sister Nandi Mandela (right) and son Luvuyo Madasa in London last month, has criticized the Sussexes for using their last name

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex met Graça Machel, widow of the late Nelson Mandela, on the final day of their 2019 Africa tour

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex met Graça Machel, widow of the late Nelson Mandela, on the final day of their 2019 Africa tour

She added in an interview with The Australian newspaper: ‘I admire Harry for having the confidence to break with such an iconic institution as the Royal Family. Grandpa rebelled against an arranged marriage to find his own path in life.

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Titled Spare - a reference to the prince's secondary place in the royal hierarchy, behind the 'heir', his brother William - it is expected to explore in detail Harry's thoughts on his emotional role in Diana's funeral and, it seems, much most

Titled Spare – a reference to the prince’s secondary place in the royal hierarchy, behind the ‘heir’, his brother William – it is expected to explore in detail Harry’s thoughts on his emotional role in Diana’s funeral and, it seems, much most

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‘But it comes at a price, you have to finance your own life, I’ve made peace with people using the grandfather’s name, but it’s still deeply disturbing and tedious every time it happens.’

In the trailer for Live To Lead, co-produced by the Nelson Mandela Foundation, Harry quotes the activist and says: ‘What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived’.

Meghan then appears onscreen and finishes the quote: “It is the difference we make in the lives of others that will determine the meaning of the lives we lead.”

The couple were executive producers, according to the credits, and introduce each of the episodes, talking in the opening credits.

Ndileka said he doesn’t believe Harry got to know his grandfather properly.

And with the Duke’s Spare book coming next week, Ndileka warned: ‘Harry needs to be authentic and stick to his own story, what relevance does his grandfather’s life have to his?

“I don’t believe he or Meghan knew their grandfather properly, perhaps when Harry was young at Buckingham Palace, but they are using his quotes in the documentary to attract people and make millions without the Mandela family benefiting.”

MailOnline asked a spokesman for the Sussexes for comment.

It is not the couple’s first encounter with the Mandelas. Questions were raised in August over the Duchess of Sussex’s suggestion that her marriage to Prince Harry sparked jubilant celebrations in South Africa.

Meghan, 41, told a US magazine that a South African actor told her that her country “rejoiced in the streets the same way we did when [Nelson] Mandela was released from prison’.

The interview with Meghan sparked outrage in South Africa, where Mandela’s grandson said his release from prison should not be compared to a royal wedding.

South African President Nelson Mandela and Princess Diana at the Mandela House in Cape Town, South Africa on March 17, 1997

South African President Nelson Mandela and Princess Diana at the Mandela House in Cape Town, South Africa on March 17, 1997

Nelson Mandela and his wife Winnie, walking hand in hand, raise their clenched fists after their release from Victor Prison, Cape Town, Sunday, February 11, 1990

Extract from Meghan’s interview on The Cut about Mandela and his wedding day

Is it over there [Meghan] recalls a moment from the 2019 London premiere of the live-action version of The Lion King. ‘I only had Archie. It was such a cruel chapter. I was afraid to go out.’ A cast member from South Africa pulled her aside. ‘He looked at me, and he is like light. He said: “I just need you to know: when you married into this family, we rejoiced in the streets the same way we did when Mandela was released from prison.” ‘

Of course, she knows she’s no Mandela, but maybe even telling me that story is a defense, because if you’re a symbol of all that’s good and charitable, how can anyone find you objectionable, how can anyone hate you. it?

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Zwelivelile Mandela said: ‘Madiba [Mandela’s] The celebration was based on overcoming 350 years of colonialism with 60 years of a brutal apartheid regime in South Africa. Therefore, it cannot be equated with the same.’

The hashtag VoetsekMeghan trended on social media. Voetsek is an offensive Afrikaans word meaning ‘go away’ or ‘get lost’.

Meghan insisted the meeting took place when she attended the London premiere of the live-action version of The Lion King in 2019.

But an actor who says he is the only South African cast member in the film told MailOnline he was “bewildered” as he had never met the duchess.

John Kani said Meghan’s marriage to Prince Harry was “no big deal” in South Africa and could not be compared to the anti-apartheid activist’s historic release after 27 years in prison.

The former Royal Shakespeare Company actor told MailOnline: ‘It was a worldwide event. Certainly Miss Meghan or whatever marries the royals cannot, by any means, be spoken of in the same breath or even the same sentence as that moment.’

The Duchess faced an international backlash for her interview with The Cut magazine in New York, in which she said she and Prince Harry were treated differently from other royals and felt forced to leave Britain.

She told the interviewer that she was turned away by a South African cast member at the 2019 premiere, a year after her lavish royal wedding.

Meghan said the unnamed actor told her: ‘I just need you to know. When you married into this family, we rejoiced in the streets just as we did when Mandela was released from prison.’

Zwelivelile 'Mandla' Mandela told MailOnline he was 'surprised' by her comments in The Cut magazine

Meghan claimed that three years ago, a Lion King cast member told her that 'we rejoiced in the streets the same way we did when Mandela was released from prison'

Zwelivelile ‘Mandla’ Mandela told MailOnline he was ‘surprised’ by her comments in The Cut magazine, when she claimed that three years ago a cast member of The Lion King told her that ‘we rejoice in the streets the same way we we did when Mandela was released from prison’

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the premiere of The Lion King at the Odeon Leicester Square in London on July 14, 2019

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the premiere of The Lion King at the Odeon Leicester Square in London on July 14, 2019

Kani, 79, said he was the only South African in the film’s cast and did not attend the London premiere.

He said the only other South African involved was Lebo M, a songwriter who was not in the cast.

He said: ‘I never met Meghan Markle. This seems like some kind of faux pas on her part.

‘I’m the only South African cast member and I didn’t attend the London premiere… It could just be a memory error on her part.’

Kani, who voiced the monkey shaman Rafiki in the film, said he was in Hollywood when the film opened in the US and then had to travel to shoot another film in Paris, so he was unable to attend the London premiere.

The actor, who is a friend of Mandela, said the moment the anti-apartheid activist walked out of prison could not be compared to a royal wedding.

He said: ‘He lives on in our memories forever for the world. Is it a “Where were you when JFK was shot… where were you when Nelson Mandela was released” kind of thing?

“You can’t really say where you were when Meghan married Harry. I’m confused about this. She is an important person in her own life.

“I can’t even tell you what month she got married or what year.

Kani said he was “truly taken aback” by Meghan’s account of her encounter with a South African actor at the London premiere.

He told MailOnline: ‘This is baffling me. I’m the only South African in the cast. I play Rafiki, Seth Rogen plays Pumbaa, Donald Glover plays Simba and Beyoncé plays Nala.’

He added: ‘I’m really surprised by this. For me it’s a non-event, the whole thing.’

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