Zuma pays tribute to white activists
Bloemfontein - President Jacob Zuma on Sunday paid special tribute to some white activists who had committed themselves to democratic change in the country.
"The ANC has always and continues to cherish [their] contribution," he told thousands of people who braved the scorching heat at the Free State Stadium.
"This unity across divides has strengthened the ANC."
Zuma said black people had been reduced to subjects until they united in 1912 to fight against the apartheid system. He said it was done with support from the African continent and international community.
Highlighting the party’s journey of 100 years of "selfless" struggle, Zuma said it began with ANC founder Pixley ka Isaka Seme who made a call for African people to unite and bury racism and tribalism.
Zuma described the ANC as a disciplined force of the left with a bias towards the poor. "[The ANC] is also a broad church that is home.”
He said the centenary celebration was an emotional but exciting and moving occasion.
Zuma also payed tribute to 134 South African patriots, most of them Umkhonto We Sizwe soldiers like Solomon Mahlangu, who were executed during the apartheid regime in Pretoria.
"Our freedom was definitely not free. It was achieved through the blood, sweat and tears of many selfless revolutionaries and cadres of our movement."