Who's your favourite political or historical figure and why?

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 30 May, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 30 May, 2004, 12:00am

Kiran Aswani, 14

The greatest speech in human history was three words long: 'Veni, Vidi, Vici'. The person who said them was one of the greatest political figures in human history: Julius Caesar. I admire Caesar because he rose from humble beginnings to become ruler of much of the then-known world with a combination of determination, political cunning, military genius and brilliant leadership. And he was also a rather sexy man.

Renee Chan, 14

Nelson Mandela is absolutely one of the great moral and political leaders of our time: an international hero whose lifelong dedication to human rights as leader of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa won him the Nobel Peace Prize and the presidency of his country. I admire him for fighting against racial oppression without violence and for his unwavering principles in doing what's 'right' no matter what the consequences are. Nothing could dampen his passion and, even in prison, Mandela never compromised his political beliefs. He symbolises peace, unity and change for the world, especially at this time of so much anger and bloodshed in the Middle East. As Mandela said, 'The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.' A true inspiration for the new generation - our universal idol!