Brian Mulroney pays tribute to the Queen's 'quiet leadership'

Brian Mulroney pays tribute to the “quiet leadership” of the Queen


Former Prime Minister of Canada Brian Mulroney on Thursday paid tribute to the “quiet leadership” of Queen Elizabeth II, who was a strong ally in his fight against the Apartheid, South Africa.  

Mr. Mulroney had the opportunity to rub shoulders with the Queen on several occasions, when he was head of Canada from 1984 to 1993. He was above all marked by his “leadership” and his way of exercising it in the fight against the segregationist regime, from the mid-1980s. 

“She did it very, very discreetly,” he said in an interview with Le Journal de Quebec. 

“I was president of the Commonwealth at that time, I often saw her in these circumstances. There was no doubt in my mind that she was after what we got, which was the release of Nelson Mandela after he imposed brutal sanctions on South Africa, and the end of the apartheid regime. That's what she wanted, without saying a word,” he said. 

His support weighed in the balance, added the former prime minister. “His support made a difference. She had a moral ascendancy over the Commonwealth and her presence was vital.” 

The greatest contribution will be that of longevity, having ruled for 70 years, he added. “The monarchy is a fairly subtle institution. They are there not to govern, but to represent the Crown in British institutions and history. And she did it with great elegance.”