Church has role to play in SA: President Zuma

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Pretoria – The faith-based sector, which helped in South Africa’s attainment of freedom, still has an important role to play in society, says President Jacob Zuma.

“As we mark 20 years of freedom, we recall the immense contribution of the faith-based sector in the struggle for liberation. Leaders of various faiths braved apartheid tyranny and prosecution. Now that we have attained our freedom, we still continue to work with the church and indeed all faiths in the struggle for a better life for all.

“The church as a social institution of great significance has a role to play in our society and the same applies to us as individual members,” said the President on Sunday.

President Zuma was speaking at the Twelve Apostles Church in Christ International Thanksgiving Day celebration at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban.

The President said that the religious sector should be relied upon to point out mistakes in a constructive manner as well as recommend solutions without becoming a permanent critic of everything that government does.

“Twenty years later, the struggle for a better life and in particular social development requires the participation of the faith-based sector to improve the lives of our people.”

The church, said the President, must lead the drive towards the restoration of Ubuntu.

“The church must be at the centre of all efforts aimed at the restoration of the age old values of our people which constitute the cornerstone of a caring society,” he said.

16 Days

President Zuma also urged the church to support the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence against Women and Children campaign, which is currently underway.

“We urge the faith-based sector to participate actively in this campaign and spread the message from the churches, temples, synagogues and mosques that South Africa  should be safe for women and children,” he said.

Nelson Mandela

The President also spoke of former President Nelson Mandela, who passed away on 5 December 2013. He urged people to participate in the commemoration of the former statesman.

“We urge all our people to participate in the commemorations of Madiba with the dignity that befits this great national hero as we did when we laid him to rest last year,” said the President. –