Unite4Mandela, a non-violent South Africa

Saturday, November 22, 2014

By More Matshediso

Pretoria – Minister in the Presidency for Women, Susan Shabangu, has urged all South Africans to commit themselves in creating a non-violent South Africa.

“We need to unite against violence of women and children… we need to all be active and be counted in a fight against abuse of women and children during this 16 Days of Activism,” Minister Shabangu said.

The Minister was addressing more than 25 000 people who gathered at the Union Buildings for the Nelson Mandela (Unite4Mandela) Sports and Cultural Day on Saturday.

Minister Shabangu pleaded with men to pledge that they will not abuse and violate the rights of women and children. She also encouraged men to financially provide for their families.

The Minister also pleaded with South Africans not to discriminate and violate the rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender/Transsexual and Intersex (LGBTI) community.

“Let us unite for a non-violent, non-sexist, non-racial, a prosperous and equal South Africa,” Minister Shabangu added.

The majority of the number of attendants and participants were South Africans, but there were runners, cyclists and those who walked in various categories from abroad, including Ethiopia and Netherlands.

Sports and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula reiterated Minister Shabangu’s words saying it is time to put an end to women and child abuse.

“Only boys abuse women. Real men do not abuse,” said the Minister.

The Minister thanked everyone who participated in the races and encouraged them to sustain a healthy lifestyle.

Minister Mbalula said although many citizens of the country did not take part in the Unite4Mandela challenge, all South Africans are today united in good spirit.

Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa was also amongst the dignitaries who took part in the five kilometre run. He said he would love to see the number of participants doubled or tripled next year.

“We want more people to come from all walks of life,” he said.

For 67 kilometres cycling, the top three for women elite category were Cherise Stander of South Africa at third place, Marianne Vos from Netherlands at second place, and Ashleigh Pasio of South Africa as the winner.

Male elite top three for 67 kilometre cycling were HB Kruger at third place, Hanco Kachelhoffer at second place and Rein van Rensburg as the winner.

The 67 kilometres cycling race winners, in both male and female categories, received an unprecedented R250 000, second place riders received R150 000, while third-place riders walked away with R100 000.

For the main running event, which was 27 kilometres road race, the winners of the race walked away with R150 000, with second place getting R100 000 and third place R50 000.

The male top three for 27 kilometre road race were Phillip Bariche at third place, Desmond Mobomoi at second place, and Elroy Gelant as the winner. While women top three were Mapaseka Makhanya at third place, Mamaroka tjoka at second place, and Mesert Biru as the winner.

There was also a 9.4 kilometres road race and walk, as well as five kilometres walk. The winners of the 9.4km run received R40 000, and the 9.4km walk winners received R20 000.

All citizens of South Africa were represented at the Unite4Mandela sports and cultural day activities, with people of various races, ages, gender and also people with disabilities. - SAnews.gov.za

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