Deputy President Paul Mashatile has called on South Africans to unite and safeguard the future of the country. He was addressing the national celebration of Heritage Day in Durban, today.
He emphasised government’s efforts in eradicating poverty, fighting crime, ending gender-based violence and boosting the country’s dwindling economy.
Mashatile says, “We are cognisant of the impact that COVID-19 has had on people’s livelihood. Some of the interventions that we have been making include the following: a temporary relief scheme, the R350 social relief grant, benefiting nearly 10 million unemployed people. The Presidential employment stimulus has benefitted over 1.2 million people, especially women and youth.”
The Deputy President also paid tribute to the late Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi’s mother, Princess Magogo kaDinuzulu, whom the stadium is named after.
She was a composer of traditional Zulu music and poetry.
“We must first appreciate Princess Magogo who in her own right has been a key player in shaping and promoting traditional arts and culture both in the country and abroad. In building on the legacy and contributions of Princess Magogo and other icons of our history, government through various initiatives aimed at artist development and strengthening partnerships to use culture as a tool for urban regeneration social cohesion and nation building.”
Mashatile says Heritage Day is a reminder for all South Africans to be united in diversity.
He says arts and culture continue to play a vital role in driving social cohesion as they did pre-democracy.
“I believe that arts and culture have an important role to play in the social transformation agenda of our country. We must remember that this sector played a key role in the anti-apartheid struggle, uniting us under a shared course and globally rallying support for the end of an oppressive system anchored in the philosophies of racial segregation,” he adds.
Meanwhile, Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Zizi Kodwa says Heritage Day is about celebrating the cultural diversity of South Africa.
“Our identity is not just language … but it’s who we are. [It’s about] language, culture, music and geographical space. Today is about celebrating diversity. Language is identity and it’s important that we talk about diversity and the rainbow nation but what identifies that nation is a recognition that we are different people,” says Kodwa.
Below is the live stream of the celebrations in Durban: