Although the Father of the Nation has gone, the Madiba magic still lives on in the hearts of South Africans who chose to clean-up the streets of Marabastad, in the City of Tshwane, on Friday.
As part of commemorating International Nelson Mandela Day, today, Deputy Minister in the Presidency, Buti Manamela, led a vigorous clean-up campaign in the area to mitigate the shabbiness of the area, which is plagued with litter and smog.
“The most important thing for us as a nation is to learn from the deeds and to be inspired by the values of our late former President Nelson Mandela and take action to change our own lives. It is also crucial for us to change the cause of our lives by taking full responsibility to ensure that we keep our country clean.
“As government, we are using Mandela Day to launch this massive clean-up campaign to ensure that moving forward; our surroundings are always clean, including Marabastad. This would be the greatest efforts by us to remember Madiba.
“With our clean-up campaign, which is driven by President Jacob Zuma, who urged all of us to ‘demonstrate our love for our beautiful country by cleaning our surroundings together’, this place (Marabastad) will be clean like any other place in our city,” he said.
Member of mayoral committee responsible for Agriculture and Environmental Management at the City of Tshwane, Petunia Mashaba, said: “If we can’t embark on the campaign of ensuring that our city is clean as South Africans, nobody will do it for us, as a city.
“Our view is that the combined 67 minutes of all the people who are taking part in this cleaning activity will make a significant contribution to making the city clean.”
An official in the Presidency, Ndifelani Magadani, said: “I came here with my colleagues to join other South Africans and the international community to keep the Madiba legacy of volunteering to effect change in the world”.
South Africans will for the first time celebrate Mandela Day without the former president Nelson Mandela who passed away last year.
Nelson Mandela International Day (or Mandela Day) is an annual international day celebrated on 18 July (on Mandela’s birthday). The day was officially declared by the United Nations in November 2009, with the first UN Mandela Day held on 18 July 2010.
Mandela Day is not meant as a public holiday, but as a day to honour the legacy of Mandela, and his values, through volunteering and community service.
Mandela Day is a global call to action that celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to transform the world, and the ability to make an impact.