News24

Vets to honour Mandela

2009-12-24 15:49

Johannesburg - The SA National Military Veterans Association (SANMVA) will call on all African countries at war to lay down arms for five days next year in honour of former president Nelson Mandela.

The organisation would invite military veterans of African nations to South Africa for an event on Human Rights day on March 21 next year, SANMVA president Kebby Maphotsoe told a news conference in Johannesburg on Thursday.

"The event will take five days and we would call on our African brothers who are at war at the moment to lay down their arms in honour of former president Mandela."

He said Mandela had helped the peace processes of many countries, including the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The event was still in the planning phases and Maphotsoe said the SANMVA still had to approach the Nelson Mandela Foundation, as well as the government to endorse the event.

The SANMVA further called on the South African Football Association and the Local Organising Committee of the 2010 world cup to use the services of military veterans.

"It is not only active servicemen that can be used by our nation, hence we will raise the issue to say we must learn from experiences of other nations in utilising the skills that have been invested in military veterans, and not throw them into nothingness when they are a huge investment of the nation."