South Africa Winnie Mandela to get her own opera Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the former wife of Nelson Mandela and South Africa's 'mother of the nation' is to have her own opera. The life story of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is to be made into an opera Photo: AFP/GETTY IMAGES 10:03PM GMT 27 Dec 2010 Mrs Madikizela-Mandela separated from Mandela in 1992 after an infidelity scandal. She was convicted of over 40 charges of fraud in 2003, was allegedly involved in several human rights abuses and has always been a controversial figure. However, for many South Africans, she remains a symbol of the anti-apartheid movement. "She gave voice to a time. She gave voice to a place. She gave voice to a people. Love her or hate her ... but come and hear her," the opera's campaign material states, calling her "the woman who personified South Africa's struggle for freedom". Winnie The Opera by the South Africa State theatre will open in April in Pretoria. It will be sung in English and Xhosa, with both western and traditional African music.