UAE hosts summit on tolerance with great success
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PRETORIA - The UAE Embassy and the University of Pretoria hosted a two day summit last week Friday and Saturday with guest speaker Ndileka Mandela.
The summit addressed the concept of tolerance with the theme being a "Year of Tolerance; Prospects for Peace and Stability in Africa".
His Excellency Mahash Saeed Alhameli, the UAE Ambassador to South Africa opened the colloquium with messages of acceptance and understanding.
The is no doubt that the diversity of religions is beautiful and tolerance is key to allowing religion to flow, Ambassador Alhameli said.
Mandela told delegates also ushered in a message of education.
The granddaughter of Nelson Mandela was not afraid of tackling the topic of patriarchy in South Africa.
She told attendees that in South Africa women have played an active role in allowing men to control women.
"Certain women have definitely played an active role in allowing patriarchy to flourish in South Africa."
We are a country that comes from various cultures and now we are living in a global village and now this lack of tolerance has led to periods of xenophobic attacks".
This is why an event like this on tolerance is so important, Mandela said.
Mandela called on South African leaders to "lead" South Africa in a moment of tolerance. She explained that SA leaders and government need to act with tolerance as a form of leadership. They need to lead by action.
Polygamy was another topic that Mandela discussed. She addressed polygamy in a South African context and posed questions on how the concept will be tackled in the next few years.
In a time when tolerance for one another is so fleeting and acceptance of our many difference seems like a fairy tale, the summit was a breath of fresh air for many delegates.
The main aim of this summit was to promote the idea that we are all the same regardless of our nationalities and cultures and that we need to learn to be more accepting, especially in South Africa.