ANC centenary flame to cross city tomorrow

2012-12-29 00:00

ROADS will be closed in the Pietermaritzburg city centre and in Raisethorpe tomorrow when the ANC holds a massive interfaith prayer service to commemorate President Jacob Zuma’s re-election as ANC leader.

The event will also see the return of the ANC centenary flame to the province. KZN was Zuma’s staunchest backer in Mangaung and led a precision-planned campaign for his return to power.

The prayer service will be held from 8 am to 11 am in the city hall. Church Street, between Chief Albert Luthuli and Otto streets, will be closed during this time to accommodate the crowds expected to attend. There are plans for a large television screen to relay proceedings from within the city hall to the crowd outside.

Carol Tarr, of the Msunduzi Traffic Department, said that after the service a cavalcade would leave from the city hall to take the flame to the Raisethorpe CBD, where it would be placed at the site of the old Taj Hotel on Chota Motala Road (currently the Nedbank offices). From 11.30 am Chota Motala Road, between Mysore and Naidoo roads, will be expected to close for a short while.

The flame will then be taken to the Umvoti (Greytown) Inkosi Bhambatha region.

On New Year’s Eve, the flame will be at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban from 6 pm to midnight, when prayer services will usher in 2013.

On New Year’s Day, the eThekwini region will hold a parade in the city centre along AB Xuma Street. The flame will be taken to various regions including Stanger and Groutville, the home towns of the late ANC stalwart, Kader Asmal, and the party’s former president, Chief Albert Luthuli.

The flame will continue its tour around the province until it is taken to the next major event on the ANC’s calendar — the party’s annual “January 8” rally. This year’s event will take place on January 12 at Durban’s Absa stadium. On this occasion the party releases its “January 8” statement, which sets out the strategic tasks and priorities of the ANC for the year ahead.

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