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Ms. Madikizela-Mandela could not immediately be reached for comment. She had been openly contemptuous of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission when she made an appearance 15 years ago. She has said that the commission, headed by Nobel laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu, had wrongfully sacrificed justice for reconciliation. She said Archbishop Tutu never once asked her about all the years of torture, assault, death threats, banishment and 18 months of solitary confinement that she suffered while her husband was imprisoned and she became a leading symbol of the struggle in South Africa.

Archbishop Tutu had begged her for the truth.

“If you are able to bring yourself to say something went wrong, I beg you, I beg you, I beg you,” he said. “You are a great person, and you don’t know how your greatness would be enhanced if you were to say: ‘Sorry, things went wrong. Forgive me.’”

The commission noted her contempt “not only for the commission but for the notion of accountability.” She had been incensed that the commission treated victims and perpetrators of apartheid equally.

“They have a nerve to suggest that freedom fighters who fought for freedom must account for their actions while the perpetrators of the worst atrocities are walking the streets laughing at the efforts of our struggle,” she said at the time.

The final report said: “The commission finds that those who opposed Mrs. Madikizela-Mandela and the Mandela United Football Club, or dissented from them, were branded as informers, and killed. … The commission finds further that Mrs. Madikizela-Mandela herself was responsible for committing such gross violations of human rights.”

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela was separated from Mr. Mandela in 1992, two years after he was released from 27 years of incarceration. Their divorce was finalized in 1996. In 1994 he was elected president of South Africa, with the all-race vote marking the final blow to apartheid, the cruel system of white rule.