Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attacked for 'using Nelson Mandela's name to make millions' by his furious granddaughter

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Netflix series was released in December 2022
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Netflix series was released in December 2022

Ndileka Mandela warned the Duke of Sussex to stick to his own story rather than creating links to her grandfather

Published

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have been attacked by Nelson Mandela's granddaughter who accused the couple of exploiting his story to "make millions".

Prince Harry told Netflix that his and Meghan Markle’s series Live to Lead was inspired by the South African icon.

However, Ndileka Mandela has attacked the couple for mentioning her grandfather, describing it as “deeply upsetting and tedious”.

She said: “Harry needs to be authentic and stick to his own story, what relevance does grandad’s life have with his?

“I don’t believe he nor Meghan have ever properly met granddad, maybe when Harry was young at Buckingham Palace, but they are using his quotations in the documentary to draw in people and make millions without the Mandela family benefiting.

“I know the Nelson Mandela Foundation has supported the initiative, but people have stolen grandfather’s quotes for years and have used his legacy because they know his name sells - Harry and Meghan are no different from them.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are not working members of the Royal Family
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are not working members of the Royal Family

She continued: “I admire Harry for having the confidence to break away from an institution as iconic as the Royal family. Grandad rebelled against an arranged marriage to find his own path in life.

“But it comes at a price, you have to then fund your own life, I’ve made peace with people using granddad’s name but it’s still deeply upsetting and tedious every time it happens.”

This is not the first time the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have drew criticism for making comparisons to Nelson Mandela.

Meghan Markle suffered a backlash after claiming during an interview with The Cut a South African cast member of the Lion King told her in 2019: “I just need you to know: When you married into this family, we rejoiced in the streets the same we did when Mandela was freed from prison’.”

Zwelivelile 'Mandla' Mandela said regarding the 1990 release of his grandfather from prison: “(It was) based on overcoming 350 years of colonialism with 60 years of a brutal apartheid regime in South Africa”.

He added regarding Meghan Markle’s claim: “So it cannot be equated to as the same.

“It can never be compared to the celebration of someone's wedding.”

During a visit in 2015 the Duke of Sussex told the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory that he did meet Mr Mandela: “I was fortunate enough to meet Madiba a number of years ago and I have treasured that memory ever since.”

Prince Harry’s mother Princess Diana met Mandela just months before her death in 1997.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry met Graca Machel, widow of the late Nelson Mandela, in 2019
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry met Graca Machel, widow of the late Nelson Mandela, in 2019

Last year Harry revealed he treasures a picture of the meeting: “On my wall and in my heart every day is an image of my mother and Mandela meeting in Cape Town in 1997.

“The photo was presented to me by the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu. When I first looked at the photo straight away what jumped out was the joy on my mother's face, the playfulness, cheekiness even.

“The pure delight to be in communion with another soul so committed to serving humanity.

“And then I looked at Mandela, here was a man with the weight of the world on his shoulders.

“Yet in that photo and so many others he's still beaming, still able to see the goodness in humanity, still buoyant with a beautiful spirit that lifted everyone around him.”