Call to build lasting partnerships to defeat global pandemics, poverty and inequality

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International Relations Minister, Naledi Pandor, has called on leaders across the world to build lasting partnerships  and work towards defeating global pandemics, poverty and inequality.

The coronavirus has affected billions of people around the world and highlighted global inequalities as well as exposed corrupt and inefficient governments.

Pandor was speaking in a virtual media briefing on International Mandela Day.

“The international community can indeed make a difference by building meaningful and lasting partnerships for a developmental agenda to enable the world to stand as one against global pandemics, poverty, inequality and injustices. We believe that the outbreak of this pandemic has forced onto the global agenda the imperative of re-imagining a social contract between nations to reduce inequality and poverty,” she said.

In the video below, DIRCO and Nelson Mandela Foundation special tribute:

Tourism Deputy Minister Fish Mahlalela has honoured Mandela Day by donating dignity help packs to needy girls and blankets to nine wards in Mpuluzi village under Chief Elbert Lithuli Municipality, in Mpumalanga.

Mahlalela says they also donated R10 000 to a family whose house was gutted by fire.

“It’s not just sanitary towels is everything that the girls need. From washing just what the girls need tooth phase, tooth brushes soap, washing racks. Everything is a pack. We then donated blankets to nine wards. Each ward was  given twenty blankets.”

Madiba’s values

Cape Town Mayor,  Dan Plato, says Mandela Day gives South Africans an opportunity to focus on the values Madiba lived by. He says Madiba was the embodiment of discipline, compassion, fairness and hope. Plato has called on South Africans to follow in his footsteps and show compassion, especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Seeing residents and businesses reach out to those in need during this time has been encouraging, displaying the same humanity which Nelson Mandela lived by. His compassion and deep understanding of his fellow South Africans, enabled him to reconcile conflict in the spirit of nation building and healing. This is especially important now  as we grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic which impacts all of our lives.”

KwaZulu-Natal ANC chairperson Sihle Zikalala says South Africans must commemorate Mandela Day by taking care of those who are needy and destitute. Zikalala was speaking at the Mandela Capture Site in Howick outside Pietermaritzburg. He says if Mandela was alive he would have acted against incompetent leaders.

“We must ensure that we support those who are needy, we must ensure that we provide for them but we must continue with the struggle which Madiba represented because Madiba represented a struggle of reconciliation and unity, but more than the struggle for human rights. I am sure that Mandela would not have kept quite as we see the world being dominated by bully leaders,” he says.

In Homevale, in Kimberley volunteers spent Mandela Day educating people about the dangers of Covid 19 and drugs. Homevale is a community gripped by poverty and crime, with drug abuse also rife. A community activist, Gamiem Abrahams says drugs are not what Nelson Mandela stood for…

“Nelson Mandela stood for so many good things. One of which was the development of young people and we want to bring back that, we want to restore our community and in that sense we want to make use of this platform to send out a message to all drug dealers to stop with your operations in our areas, and the young people stop falling prey to substance abuse.”

In the video below, volunteers distribute food and PPEs around Kimberley:

Trek4Mandela climbers have distributed food parcels to 140 staff members at the Cradle of Humankind and neighbouring hotels and reserves who have been negatively affected by COVID-19.

Today the climbers would have been summiting Mount Kilimanjaro as part of Mandela Day celebrations. However the event has been postponed due to COVID-19.

NGO, the Imbumba Foundation, which has been the custodian for Trek4 Mandela for the past 10 years has identified three key areas of need in the current climate which they wish to address: Menstrual Hygiene, Education and Food Security.

The foundation’s Chief Executive Richard Mabaso says: “As part of menstrual health, we looking at collecting more then 10 million sanitary pads to support a minimum of 67 000 new girls across the country. We also looking at the education by enabling the class of 2020 the matriculants whereby we will be assisting them with applications at various universities throughout the country. But we also looking at our exciting sustainable food production initiative.”