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Nation builders understand that working for people's good humanises them - Thabo Mbeki

By unknown | May 21, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

"When Sowetan started the nation building initiative some 12 years ago, we were still not free.

"When Sowetan started the nation building initiative some 12 years ago, we were still not free.

"This initiative has, therefore, attained its maturity during our years of struggle and freedom, national reconciliation and social transformation.

"This has shaped our community builders and they have also helped shape the new society being born through their hard work, their selflessness and their commitment to helping their neighbours.

"Our community builders of the decade are people with perspective and vision, humanists who have understood not only the legacy of our past and the realities of our present, but also what kind of life the future should hold for all of us.

"I believe it is a profoundly humane impulse that inspires our community builders, our nation builders to embrace the idea that to participate in activities targeted at achieving the greater good of all is in itself a humanising vocation.

"In a country where apartheid sought to destroy our very humanity and reduce people to the status of being less than human, what generations of community builders and freedom fighters have done is to assert the nobility of each and every human being.

"Our responsibility remains to overcome that which dehumanises us and to build a just world, a South Africa that belongs to all who live in it, and an Africa which belongs, as an equal, in the world community of nations and continents."

l This is an excerpt from an speech by President Thabo Mbeki at the Sowetan, SABC and Old Mutual Community Builder of the Years Awards in Midrand, Gauteng, on November 16 2000.


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