Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the South African anti-apartheid activist formerly married to South Africa’s first black president, Nelson Mandela, has died at age 81 after a long illness.

Here are some facts about her life:

Known among her supporters as “the Mother of the Nation,” Madikizela-Mandela was one of South Africa’s first black female social workers and a key (and contentious) figure in the fight for South African liberation.

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