President to lead nation in cleaning up for Madiba

Friday, July 18, 2014

Pretoria – South Africans have heeded the call to dedicate 67 minutes of their time to clean their communities on Mandela Day on Friday.

President Jacob Zuma, who called on citizens to commemorate Mandela Day by participating in clean-up campaigns across the country, will lead by example when he embarks on a massive clean-up campaign at the Nelson Mandela School of Science and Technology, in Mvezo, in the Eastern Cape.

He is then expected to open the Mvezo Komkhulu Museum and unveil a statue of Madiba.

Mvezo is former President Nelson Mandela’s birthplace. This is the first Mandela Day since the struggle icon passed away in December last year. The father of the nation would have turned 96 today, 18 July.

Far from the sombre mood of the ten days of mourning the country experienced at the end of last year, today South Africans are wearing their Mandela Day shirts and excitedly rolling up their sleeves to play their part in improving their communities in various ways and celebrating the legacy of Madiba.

The Mandela family have said they will be commemorating the day by hosting a high-tea for elderly people in Soweto, before having a birthday lunch at their home in Houghton.

Numerous imbizos have been planned across the country, with Cabinet ministers swapping their formal suites with Mandela Day T-shirts.

The Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa, is in Mahikeng where he will clean up a local hospital.

International Relations and Cooperation Minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Deputy Minister, Nomaindia Mfeketo, and members of the diplomatic community will take part in a clean-up campaign at the Bloed Street Taxi Rank in Pretoria.

The Deputy Minister for Social Development, Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, will spend the day at Re Hloka Eng Drop in Centre for Orphans and Vulnerable Children at Titibe Village Ga Dikgale, Limpopo Province.

In partnership with the MTN Foundation South Africa, Rand Water, and Transnet the centre will be handed over complete with kitchen and toilet structures, a palisade fence, as well as school uniforms to 205 children registered at the centre.

The Department of Communications will commemorate Mandela Day in Hammanskraal outside of Pretoria. The Minister of Communications Faith Muthambi and the department’s staff will spend the day at Tender Loving Care Old Age Home and Tshwaraganang Orphanage, cleaning up, cooking and gardening.

The staff will further interact with the children at Tshwaraganang Orphanage and donate toys and food supplies.

The Basic Education Department will be launching a Book Flood Campaign in Pretoria today. The campaign is aimed at “putting a book in every child’s hand” and making reading a habit among youngsters.

The public is invited to donate story books suitable for children between the ages of 5 and 12 years to the department during Mandela Month.

The Deputy Minister of Basic Education Enver Surty will mark Mandela Day by handing over the Nginza Senior Primary School in the Nginza Village in the Eastern Cape. Through it’s ASIDI programme, the department has identified 496 mud/inappropriate structures that are set to be replaced.

To date the department has seen more than 60 schools reach practical completion and in excess of 45 have been handed over by the department since the birth of ASIDI in 2011.

The Ministry for Women will be at the Porter’s House for Women and Children and the Rivoningo Care Centre in Pretoria to not only clean up the premises but empower the women with sewing and gardening skills that will enable them to be economically active.

The Minister of Justice and Correctional Service, Michael Masutha, accompanied by his deputies, John Jeffery and Thabang Makwetla will dedicate their 67 minutes to community work in Mamelodi West.

The minister is set to hand over maintenance cheques to beneficiaries who have reached a successful resolution of their cases. The imbizo will afford the residents of Mamelodi and surrounding areas an opportunity to engage the minister on justice related services.

In another move to commemorate Madiba, Video Vision Entertainment, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and Ster Kinekor have teamed up screen Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom to the public at no cost. 

The screenings will start at 9:45am at selected Ster Kinekor cinemas across South Africa.  Members of the public will be admitted on a first-come-first-serve basis.

The film which celebrates Nelson Mandela’s extraordinary life journey from his childhood in a rural village through to his election as President of South Africa is an inspirational film which will motivate people to make a difference in the lives of the less fortunate. –

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