THIS year marks the 50th anniversary of the Sharpeville massacre in which 69 people were gunned down by apartheid security police.
To commemorate the anniversary, the Sedibeng municipality is going all out to keep the legacy of the victims alive.
The guest list includes President Jacob Zuma, former presidents Thabo Mbeki and FW de Klerk, and Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe. Former president Nelson Mandela will send a video message.
Now called Human Rights Day, it was on this day in 1960 that 69 people were killed by police while peacefully protesting against pass laws in Sharpeville on the Vaal.
Mayor Mahole Mofokeng said: "We have declared March human rights month. We have a three-day programme to celebrate the heroes of 1960 and keep their legacy alive by improving the lives of the community."
Mofokeng said the commemoration would start with a night vigil on March 19 in Sharpeville. "People will march from Sharpeville nightclub on Seiso Street to a church wearing white and carrying candles in memory of the fallen heroes and heroines," he said.
A gala dinner is planned for the following day. The dinner will also be used to launch the Sedibeng Reconstruction and Development Agency and strengthen the relationship between business and the municipality.
"On March 21, we will lay wreaths at Phelindaba Cemetery and the Sharpeville Memorial Precinct and have a religious service before going to the stadium."
Premier Nomvula Mokonyane and Zuma will be among the main guests. Zuma will be honoured with the Freedom of the City, making him the second person to receive it after Mandela.
"First Lady MaKhumalo-Zuma will be honoured as the patron of the SRDA as she is a symbol of strength, courage, hope and commitment," said Mofokeng.