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Icons' stories key to Mandela Day

South Africa

Johannesburg - The importance of stories on our struggle icons in underprivileged schools was identified as a key Mandela Day focus at the launch of the Nelson Mandela foundation’s Mandela Day activities.

The Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) accepted a handover of various books on Madiba from primary school children from Roedean and Saheti schools.

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Launch of the 2014 GDE 'Mandela Day' Activities at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Houghton.
learners from Rodean and Saheti handed over parcels of books as gifts to MEC, Panyaza Lesufi to be distributed amongst learners from less advantaged communities.
Picture: Antoine de Ras, 11/07/2014Women from Afrika Tikkum project in Diepsloot show off their new blankets donated by Bikers for Mandela day as the bikers kicked started their 67 minutes drive. International Mandela Day will be celebrated next Friday. 
Picture: Paballo Thekiso

According to MEC for Education Panyaza Lesufi, the Mandela Day campaign was conceptualised in response to calls that all our children should be exposed to the history of stalwarts of our democracy.

“This helps us send a strong message of our past and we will make sure that every library will contain a book on Mandela,” said Lesufi.

“I thank all who have offered to give – through education we can break the shackles of poverty.” To kick off the week leading up to International Mandela Day, the Department of Education invited donations of books, which will be distributed to school libraries in Gauteng.

LeadSA’s Yusuf Abramjee urged citizens to make this the best Mandela Day ever as it is the first since the statesman’s death.

Speaking at the event at the Nelson Mandela centre of memory, veteran struggle icons George Bizos and Ahmed Kathrada both stressed the importance of education and the role books play in igniting the imagination.

They reminded pupils and guests Mandela felt strongly about education and the responsibility falls to everyone to carry his wishes forward.

“With freedom, came responsibility to serve yourself, to serve others and the country,” said Kathrada.

Saturday Star

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