The Daily Show host Trevor Noah returned to South Africa this past weekend for the Global Citizen Festival, which celebrated the life and legacy of former president Nelson Mandela. The comedian visited his grandmother, Koko, in her home in Soweto, a township of Johannesburg to speak about apartheid.
Noah filmed the discussion in an MTV Cribs-inspired segment for the Comedy Central satire program titled Cribs: Oppression Edition.
Koko shared how hard it was for Black people during the apartheid era noting the brutality of police and the cruel labor conditions, which included “working for no pay.”
“Digging potatoes with your hands, and if one of the workers dies, they are buried, and potatoes are planted right on top of where they were,” 91-year-old recalled.
She said Mandela was the people’s saving grace. “He was just like our god on Earth, really.”
During the height of the racial tension, Noah’s grandmother shared how the TV personality being biracial was an issue.
“When you were here, you gave me a tough time because you wanted to play on the street,” Koko told Noah. “There were kids who never knew what a White man was.”
She added that children would run away from her grandson because they thought he was White.
Koko described Noah as “energetic and naughty” and revealed she doesn’t watch The Daily Show because she has no electricity.
Watch the sentimental moment in the clip below.
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Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.