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Speech delivered by the Executive Mayor Dan Plato at the 30th anniversary of Nelson Mandela's return at City Hall<span><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">His excellency President Cyril Ramaphosa</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">His excellency Former President Kgalema Motlanthe</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Guest of honour, Ms Leymah Gbowee</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">His excellency Minister of Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation, Mr Nathi Mthethwa</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Mrs Graca Machel</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, Members of the Mandela Family</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Trustees of the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the Mandela Rhodes Foundation as well Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, and their CEO’s Ms Judy Sikuza and Ms Sibongile Mkhabela</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Members of the board of the Atlantic Fellowship for Racial Equity</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Members of parliament, government and the diplomatic corps</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Welcome to this very special occasion.</div></li></ul> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:949px;" /> </figure>​​</span><p>The 11th of February marks a day in our country’s history where hope became reality. And we are here at the iconic City Hall, a place where the late first democratic president Nelson Mandela made his first address to the public as a free man. It is a site which has become a heritage and popular tourist location, immortalised by the statue of his likeness, where scores of locals and visitors take photos to mark having visited this significant space. </p><p>It is a site where a museum will soon be opening in remembrance of Tata Madiba. Cape Town also pays its respects to our former leader through a massive image displayed on the outer walls of the Civic Centre as a watchful guardian over the city. A welcoming image of a smiling Madiba greeting those entering the city, and for which a process is underway to renew this image so that it may continue to honour his memory. </p><p>The 11th of February is a day on which all of us should pause and reflect.<br>- On the hope held for a new democratic South Africa.<br>- The hope where a country could one day begin to heal the wounds of its divided past <br>- The hope that every South African could prosper because of opportunity and access<br>One person represented that hope and the sacrifices to bring our country to democracy. It was a difficult journey, characterised by pain and personal loss. Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, our first democratic president – and the many other struggle veterans – endured that journey for millions of people, so all of us would be able to access opportunity and have equal rights. It is a project that continues because there is still work to be done.</p><p>Madiba endured circumstances that would have made most men bitter and vengeful. However, after 27 years in jail, his strength of spirit remained unwavering, as strong as the first day he joined the struggle for liberation. Madiba’s humble and warm nature was one of a true leader and diplomat. He remains an example for all of us. Throughout all Madiba survived, he believed in his vision for the country. </p><p>Today we celebrate the life and achievements of the late Nelson Mandela, the first president of a democratic South Africa. </p><p>While we have many challenges facing us, increasing unemployment, a struggling economy, and building a safe South Africa, now more than ever we need to reclaim the sense of hope that Madiba lived his life by. But this hope needs to be paired with meaningful action. </p><p>Now more than ever we need to live the example of his commitment to non-racialism and peace. This must echo in our hearts and minds. President Mandela’s legacy was the gift of non-racialism, forgiveness and selflessness. It has been more than six years since tata Madiba left us, and if I look at our society today, I think we have somewhat lost our way from these ideals.</p><p>To help our country get back on track, the unemployed need jobs.</p><p>We need accountability for those who have done wrong.</p><p>We need a back-to-basics approach to governance so that more people experience freedom and opportunity.</p><p>We need to make sure our residents feel like they are heard</p><p>So they may believe us when we say, we are in their service and are working to improve their lives. </p><p>This is what is needed to restore the faith that South Africans should have in their leaders. </p><p>On this anniversary of the day that Mandela was released from prison, let us recommit to these values </p><p>Let us speak up for what is right</p><p>Let us live with integrity</p><p>Let us encourage one another to do more for our fellow human beings</p><p>Let us choose kindness over violence</p><p>Let us lift the values of the beloved late Madiba and move closer to the South Africa he dreamed for us. By taking hands and working together, we can do it. <br>Thank you. </p><p><strong>End</strong><br></p>2020-02-10T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#25ac58cc-e33e-4241-aac5-50e54d948741;L0|#025ac58cc-e33e-4241-aac5-50e54d948741|City Hall;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#90b49a62-96e2-436a-9c68-187c9ab33534;L0|#090b49a62-96e2-436a-9c68-187c9ab33534|Mayor;GP0|#7909552d-7094-4a9e-9841-a8188cf93029;L0|#07909552d-7094-4a9e-9841-a8188cf93029|Celebration1

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