President Jacob Zuma
President Jacob Zuma has called on South Africans to use Mandela Day to take the fight against poverty forward, theming the day #ActionAgainstPoverty.

“Too many of our people live in poverty in spite of progress that government is making in fighting poverty, inequality and unemployment.

“As guided by the National Development Plan’s vision for rural revitalisation, inclusive economic growth and poverty reduction, we must work together to intensify poverty alleviation programmes and initiatives to ensure that our people receive basic human needs, especially food production to ensure access to food,” Zuma said.

“The people of South Africa are also encouraged to be actively involved in various initiatives that would change their lives and uplift their communities out of poverty.”

Zuma has encouraged the promotion of food gardens for households, support for co-operatives, SMMEs and other initiatives that would help alleviate poverty and improve quality of life.

The theme has been carried through government departments, with Brand South Africa hosting Deputy Minister of Communications Tandi Mahambehlala and the South African men's hockey team at the New Jerusalem Children’s Home in Midrand, Gauteng, to commemorate International Mandela Day tomorrow.

“The world remains beset by so much suffering, poverty and deprivation it is in your hands to make of our world a better one for all.” This famous call to action by our former president Nelson Mandela is a continuation of a legacy which calls on all South Africans of all races and creeds to unite against poverty.

In the Eastern Cape, Sport and Recreation Minister Thulas Nxesi, in partnership with the Eastern Cape Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture and Nelson Mandela Bay Metro will embark on a clean-up campaign and refurbishment within the Kuyga Mega Park in the municipality. An outdoor gym would also be officially handed over to the community after the clean-up.

In the same province, the Department of Arts and Culture in partnership with the Nelson Mandela Museum will host a dialogue under the theme: “Critical Reflections on the Legacies of Nelson Mandela and OR Tambo” as part of celebrating the lives of the two human rights activists and ANC presidents.

The Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs, Barbara Thomson, will donate educational toys and books and distribute gifts to the elderly in Pietermaritzburg.

AgriAid SA said as part of celebrating Mandela’s legacy, it would conduct a door-to-door HIV testing campaign at an informal settlement in Phola Park, Sabie, Mpumalanga. It will also distribute over 2000 sanitary pads to young women.