Former President F.W de Klerk has called for an end to racial divisions in the country, saying South Africans should reflect on Madiba’s memory as a guideline to defeating racism.

De Klerk’s video message was played at Mvezo, where the Nelson Mandela centenary birthday celebrations are taking place.

People from across the world are also taking part in the Mandela Day initiative in honour of the late President.

De Klerk says he hopes Wednesday’s events to honour Madiba will trigger some action to defeat racism.

“I sincerely hope that the commemoration of his hundredth birthday will lead to a re-evaluation within South Africa and will bring us back to those values. The need to say what he said in his famous words that ‘never and never and never again should any one group oppress another group in SA’. Let the memory of Nelson Mandela become a firm guideline for us as to how to deal with our racially divided society.”