Anton Lembede (21 January 1914 – 30 July 1947) was a South African activist and founding president of the ANC Youth League. He has been described as "the principal architect of South Africa's first full-fledged ideology of African nationalism." Lembede had a strong influence on Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu and Oliver Tambo and worked with them to reform the ANC, which the Youth League described at the time as "a body of gentlemen with clean hands". He never saw the success of Black activism that enabled Black South Africans to be treated equally – he died in 1947, aged 33. Lembede was regarded as the progenitor of the “Programme of Action” that was adopted as a guiding document by the 1949 meeting of the ANC.