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Prudence Nobantu Mabele
(1971 - living) South Africa

Prudence Mabele

AIDS activist, healer


Prudence, the first black lesbian to disclose her HIV+ status in South Africa, since August 2003 is a trained sangoma, that is a traditional healer in "ubungoma". She is the director of Positive Women's Network.

In July 2003, Prudence, particularly famous for being the first black lesbian to disclose her HIV status in South Africa, graduated as a trained sangoma. It all started with some minor sicknesses when she was young. Her grandmother took her to doctors who could not figure out exactly what was 'wrong' with her. Finally it is clear that she is one of those individuals who are fortunate to have healing powers.

When she was born her grandmother called her Nobantu (which means 'a people's person'). Prudence has a tendency to help other people. She does this by giving them advice and sometimes refer them to other sources. Apparently this does not just come from nowhere, but most people get it from their ancestors, it is been said. Her grandmother was also a sangoma and one member of the family had to take over her and fortunately Prudence became the successor.

Prudence, a Centre for Development and Population Activities alumna and board member, carried the Olympic torch June 12, 2004, as part of an international torch relay for the 2004 Olympics being held this summer in Athens, Greece. As part of the South African relay team, Prudence ran with the torch through the streets of Cape Town.


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