Mandela’s Stepdaughter Blinded From Boyfriend’s Beating


Josina Machel

According to the New York Daily News, the stepdaughter of Nelson Mandela has become the latest victim of domestic violence as she admitted that her boyfriend reportedly beat her so bad that it left her blind in one eye. The incident stemmed from the boyfriend, who can’t be named under South African law, becoming enraged when Josina Machel wanted to spend the night at her mother’s house for her 70th birthday in October.

“I wanted to be with my mother,” Machel, who is the daughter of Graça Machel, told the publication “We were going to celebrate her birthday the following day and so I just wanted to feel my mum around me. That is why I was so adamant about going home.”

It was then that the boyfriend started to attack Machel verbally

“He expressed his unhappiness about me wanting to go home,” she said. “They are just not words that I expected to hear from anyone. They were demeaning of any woman and of me.”

From there the boyfriend surprised Machel when he began to hit her. So much so that she turned to ask him, “What?”

“That is how I got the second jab that blinded me, which ruptured the eye almost immediately. I felt the third one coming and that’s when I ran out of the car, ran away from him,” Machel said.

While running away from her boyfriend, Machel screamed for help and at some point during the incident , tripped and blacked out. The next thing she remembered was waking up where doctors told her that the boyfriend’s punch ruptured her retina and that her vision may never come back.

“I’m still going through myriad feelings,” Machel told South Africa’s City Press. “To be honest, I have not been able to grieve. I have not been able to cry. I have not been angry. I have not been able to feel all those emotions that happened because I’ve been concentrating on my eye,.”

Regarding her reason for going public with what happened to her, Machel cited a desire to honor her mother and Mandela.

“Papa Madiba has always defended women’s rights, and my mum is the epitome of the significance of fights against injustice against women,” she said. “So at this point, I have no right to be quiet and not to stand up.