Kathrada honours South Africans
Anti-Apartheid icon Ahmed Kathrada has spent his 67 minutes on Nelson Mandela’s 94th birthday by cleaning graves of great South Africans who, like Madiba, devoted their lives to improving the lives of others. Kathrada visited the graves of Yusuf Akhalwaya, Lillian Ngoyi, Barney Molokoane and Helen Joseph. He also went to the graves of Joe Slovo, Zeph Mothopeng, Dr Abu Asvat, Hector Pieterson and Tsietsi Mashanini, who are all buried at Avalon Cemetery, Soweto.
The veteran politician later proceeded to Westpark Cemetary where anti-apartheid activists Neil Aggett and David Webster are buried. The struggle icon told reporters that he chose to visit the graves of these South Africans because they selfless fought in quest for freedom. Kathrada who lived and suffered under apartheid, spending nearly 30 years of his adult life in apartheid jails for resisting oppression started his tour of the graves Wednesday morning from the Foundation’s office in Lenasia. The struggle stalwart also thanked South Africans for honouring and respecting Madiba.
Meanwhile Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille on Wednesday said Nelson Mandela’s 94 years on this earth has shown her what it means to be a servant of the people. De Lille said world leaders can take a leaf out of Madiba’s book with selfless service. The mayor wished the former president a happy birthday. “We love you. May you enjoy the day with your family. Every day, when I think about you I remember the words that ring so true, where you said that you stood before the people, not as a prophet but as a servant to the people.” Mandela’s birthday is celebrated world wide as International Mandela Day.