We thank those who changed our world
SOUTH Africa is free. Thank you to all those Robben Islanders and those who went into exile to drive the apartheid system out of our country.
As the political sidelines were busy re-reading and reminding each other of the painful past in the process of uniting the country, where the group areas act and other segregational laws were being abolished for a better South Africa, sport was positioned critically, taking its cue to help the country in this healing process.
The national reconciliation process needed sport, which was divided along racial lines, to also unite be admitted to and participate in international organisations.
That process saw us celebrate the success of the Springboks winning the World Cup in 1995. We celebrated the likes of Francois Pienaar, Joel Stransky and Chester Williams Williams. We celebrated Bafana Bafana's Africa Cup of Nations victory in 1996.
We announced our arrival on the world stage with these magnificent victories in the two major sporting codes in the country.
Those victories on the world and African stages represented our country to the global political sphere.
Siyabonga, re a leboga, thank you, dankie to all those sport administrators who sacrificed so much for our sporting codes to prosper. Who can forget our netball and cricket teams who continued to shine as we moved to transform the sport in general.
We celebrate the story of the sports journalists of that time. When those Sowetan sport journalists sat down and influenced the name of the football team, it showed what pen and paper can achieve in society.
We celebrate the role each one of us played to transform our society.
That is why we celebrate when the likes of Sam Ramsamy, Molefi Oliphant, Oregan Hoskins, Irvin Khoza, Gideon Sam, Danny Jordaan and many more of our administrators keep making names for themselves and the country by contributing to the world of sport. We gain from their expertise by serving in these important international boards.
Sport is a strategic vehicle to transform our society and March 21 is an important calendar date in the country.
Today, in celebrating international women's month and commemorating Human Rights Day, we thank all those who supported Banyana Banyana and the Smoothies (women's hockey team) during the running of coaching clinics in Mamelodi and Soweto.
Let's always commemorate Human Rights Day using sport as a tool to unite our people.