-Former president of South Africa, Kgalema Motlanthe spoke at St Mary’s Cathedral at commemoration service for late Winnie Madikizela Mandela
-He warned government of the repercussions of overindulging in celebrations of past victories
-Motlanthe called on government to focus on current challenges and invest in the youth of South Africa
At a service commemorating the late struggle icon, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, former president Kgalema Motlanthe addressed the audience, calling for the government and the ANC to invest in the youth of South Africa if they were to avoid suffering a similar demise to those of past imperial systems.
“Far mightier systems, the system of apartheid, the Roman empire, the Mongolian empire, the British empire, came and fell,” he said.
Briefly.co.za learnt that Motlanthe cautioned the government that focusing on celebrating the victories and achievements of the past takes the focus off of the challenges of today.
“Then, of course, the statue is mounted. We come back to unveil the statue, it’s another occasion for celebration, so you roll out the red carpet for celebration of the past.
"The net effect of that is that the younger people who were not born in that past get cut off.”
The struggle stalwart pointed out that the past, present and the future were a continuum and emphasised the importance of drawing lessons from the past to confront present challenges as a solid foundation for the future is laid down.
“Young people bring with them energy and radical perspectives, because the older we become, the easier it becomes for us to adapt to circumstances.”
The church service at St. Mary's Cathedral in Johannesburg was held in commemoration of the life of Madikizela-Mandela, who died in a Johannesburg hospital last week at the age of 81 after a long illness.
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