Giving hope to humanity

A thousand questions we may ask. We, as a people, have evolved and civilization of mankind has evolved to such proportions as to celebrate the lives and times of Ntate Es'kia Mphahlele, the ascendancy to president of the US of Barack Obama and today the celebration of Mama Makeba's life and times.

A thousand questions we may ask. We, as a people, have evolved and civilization of mankind has evolved to such proportions as to celebrate the lives and times of Ntate Es'kia Mphahlele, the ascendancy to president of the US of Barack Obama and today the celebration of Mama Makeba's life and times.

The two, Ntate Mphahlele and Mama Makeba, risked their lives in pursuit of human peace and harmony.

In their own different ways they wrote their epic novels. Mama Makeba touched those who related to her music in a profound way.

The two gave hope to humanity, they understood the condition of the time and hoped for a better country - the South Africa we now celebrate and at times take for granted?

In her song and dance she carried a message of hope; she carried a message of growth and prosperity and the spirit of humanity.

In the same way, Ntate Mphahlele in his writings showered us with courage and an understanding of who we are in the world. What joins them was the need to build a better country.

The ability of Americans to cross the colour line and get to the human reality is a meeting point of their dreams and hopes.

So, as Americans celebrate, we in South Africa celebrate the lives and times of our legends.

We see in the American reality the coming to pass of Martin Luther King Jnr's ground breaking "I have a dream" speech. We see that the problem of the colour line of the 20th century has now passed and so we celebrate their lives.

What Ntate Mphahle hoped for, Mme Makeba read about and witnessed on television screens as she was preparing for her concert in Italy.

Today we say: rest in peace, it is in acknowledgement of their works and what they witnessed.

Sello Madima, e-mail

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