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Congresswoman Karen Bass

Representing the 37th District of California

House Passes Bass Resolution Honoring Nelson Mandela

December 12, 2013
Press Release
WASHINGTON—The U.S. House of Representatives today unanimously passed House Resolution 434, a bipartisan resolution authored by Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) to honor the life of the late South African President Nelson Mandela, who passed away on Dec. 5.

The resolution recognizes President Mandela’s defiance of injustice and commitment to peace and reconciliation, remembers his many years spent in imprisonment, and honors his presidency during which he established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate gross human rights violations committed during South Africa’s apartheid years.

"President Mandela was so much more than the first fully democratically elected president of South Africa," said Rep. Bass. "He was a global leader who taught the world the meaning of social justice, and he was a teacher who showed the world the power of compassion and reconciliation. He turned the injustice of 27 years in prison and the unforgiving brutality of apartheid into healing for his South Africa."

In the 1980s, Rep. Bass chaired the Southern Africa Support Committee, where she protested outside the South African Embassy to raise awareness about apartheid in South Africa and to advocate for anti-apartheid legislation. Rep. Karen Bass currently serves as the Ranking Member on the Africa Subcommittee on the House Foreign Relations Committee and she traveled to South Africa with a bipartisan congressional delegation to take part in the memorial service celebrating the President Mandela’s life.

The legislation was introduced with House Foreign Relations Committee Chair Ed Royce (R-Calif.) and Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), Chair of the Africa Subcommittee Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio),  Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and was co-sponsored by nearly two-thirds of House members.