KZN kicks off 20 years of freedom celebrations

Monday, March 10, 2014

Pretoria – KwaZulu-Natal has kick started the provincial leg of celebrations of the country’s 20 years of freedom and democracy.

Premier Senzo Mchunu, members of Cabinet, district mayors and leaders from various communities released doves as a symbol of peace at the Mandela Capture Site in Howick today.

The major symbol of these celebrations is the 20 Years of Freedom Flame. The Freedom Flame will criss-cross the 11 districts, including eThekwini Metro, symbolising light prevailing over darkness.

A series of activities led by MECs and mayors in various districts have been lined up for when the flame arrives and communities are urged to participate in these historic celebrations.

Speaking at the launch, Premier Mchunu said: "Itis impossible to talk about Tata Madiba’s vote in the first ever democratic elections in his lifetime without referring to KwaZulu-Natal.

“The unpleasant fact is that any mention of apartheid, the people of KwaZulu-Natal remember a period of great cruelty, the torture and killing of political activists, the break-up of families and the suffering of orphans and widows.”

“In sharp contrast, any mention of Tata Nelson Mandela, the faces of the people of KwaZulu-Natal lighten up, as he represents the end of suffering and hope for a better future.”

He said Mandela understood the suffering and the plight of the people of KwaZulu-Natal during apartheid, and would often travel to the then Natal to meet with ordinary community members, political activists and leaders of the ANC.

Premier Mchunu urged the province to “hold each other’s hands and embrace this freedom, reconciliation, acceptance and respect for all communities”.

“Respect for human rights must be the new culture of our new South African nation. Let no one take away your right to be free and enjoy the fruit of this democracy. Let us work hard together to create this positive future for our children.” – SAnews.gov.za

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