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Commemorating the 27th Anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison

The 11th of February 2017 marks the 27th anniversary of Madiba’s release from prison. It reminds us of the 27 years he spent in prison. These 27 years signify the selflessness of Madiba and his comrades, sacrificing their own freedom for the emancipation of our people from the shackles of apartheid.

For those of us who have experienced the past 27 years, it allows us to reflect on how massive their commitment was, especially when one considers the time they spent in prison and the hardship and torture they had to endure, but coming out of prison as loving and forgiving human beings.

As we celebrate this historic occasion, we fondly reminisce on the mood of our people 27 years ago – we were filled with hope, dreams of a bright future, and the dawn of a new era. Today, 27 years later, there is a stark contrast as the mood is of despair and uncertainty.

The events at the State Of The Nation Address in Parliament last night would have been unimaginable in Madiba’s eyes. What an embarrassment it is for our people, particularly as the global media broadcast the unimaginable !

As a nation, we need to reflect on the principles of our democracy and the foundations on which it was built. The Freedom Charter and the Constitution are the guiding lights.

We need to take inspiration from the principled and ethical leadership of Madiba, Cde OR Tambo and their fellow freedom fighters. To come together in the spirit of Ubuntu. To chart the destiny of our nation and build a prosperous country for our children and future generations.

Madiba, in his final State Of The Nation Address on 5th February 1999, made this prophetic statement, “Our hope for the future depends on our resolution as a nation in dealing with the scourge of corruption. Success will require an acceptance that, in many respects, we are a sick society.”

Anant Singh
10 February 2017

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