On 18 July 2013, the international community will unite in celebration of the life one of the legendary icons of our time, former President Nelson Mandela. The day marks Madiba’s 95rd birthday this year. The 18th of July was declared by the UN General Assembly as an annual Nelson Mandela Day in 2009. The celebration of this day recognises and gives credence to Mandela’s commitment to human rights, conflict resolution and reconciliation.
Nelson Mandela by Marco Cianfanelli (r)
Created by South African artist Marco Cianfanelli, “Release” is a gorgeous monument to a true icon of peace: Nelson Mandela. To mark the 50th anniversary of Mandela’s capture by apartheid police in 1962, Cianfanelli created 50 columns of painted laser-cut steel in the South African town of Howick
It recognises his outstanding contribution to the creation of a non-racial, non-sexist democratic South Africa.
On this day and indeed the entire month, citizens of the world are encouraged to dedicate at least 67 minutes of their time to do community work in celebration of the values and principles that our first democratic President epitomises. The 67 minutes symbolise Mandela’s 67 years of selfless service to the people of South Africa and the world in the course of his extraordinary life.
Nelson Mandela Day should serve as a catalyst to foster social cohesion, nation building, economic development and inclusive citizenship. This year’s celebrations will take place under the theme “Mobilising the society in community development”. The focus will be on community development and a call to everyone to use their energies, wisdom and skills to contribute towards eradicating poverty, addressing food security and reducing hunger.
18 July 2013
• Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture Dr Joe Phaahla will host Mandela Day event at Nelson Mandela Museum on Thursday, 18 July 2013 in Qunu, Eastern Cape. The Deputy Minister will donate books at Qunu Junior Secondary School. He will also install a flag, clean and “beautify” the school through public art. The historical significance of the school is that Madiba attended the school in his early life. Some of the activities will also spread to the surrounding school.
• Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture will respectively visit the Nelson Mandela Museum “construction site” in Mthatha, Eastern Cape. The museum has been temporarily closed for refurbishments to improve preservation standards and create more exhibition space. The political principals will be taken for a tour of the museum and be briefed on progress of the refurbishments.
• The Republic of Congo has also dedicated 18 July 2013 as “South Africa Day” during FESPAM, when the world will be celebrating Nelson Mandela’s 95th birthday. The highlight of the day will be a concert featuring the best of South African music to celebrate Madiba’s legacy.
These activities are also held in tribute to Mandela and to ensure that even while his health has suffered setbacks recently, the people of South Africa, the African continent and the world carry forward his good work every single day.
Enquiries: Teresa Shabalala 012 441 3626/082 933 9156
Mack Lewele 012 441