Businessman fulfils dream with Mandela statue

2012-12-14 00:00

ANOTHER honour was bestowed on former president Nelson Mandela when a statue was unveiled in Bloemfontein yesterday.

The seven-metre tall statue is perched on the Naval Hill and overlooks the City of Mangaung.

President Jacob Zuma unveiled the statue just three days before the ANC’s elective congress starts, at the town where the ANC was formed in 1912, after several postponements.

Businessman Freddie Kenney sponsored the statue to say thank you to Mandela and those who were in the liberation struggle.

Speaking at the event, Zuma said he was honoured to unveil the statue in honour of Mandela. “It is so befitting that we unveil this statue just days before the 53rd national conference of the organisation he loves so dearly,” he said.

Zuma noted that the statue was being unveiled when Madiba was recuperating at a hospital in Pretoria. “We assured him of the love and support of all South Africans during his hospitalisation,” he said.

The president said the statue was paying tribute to the stalwart and drew lessons from his life and conduct.

“We know Tata as a humble person, a principled leader whose life and dedication continues to be a source of inspiration to South Africans and humanity.”

He added that the statue reminded the country of the path it went through to attain freedom. “It also reminds us of the birth of the ANC in Mangaung in 1912, the democratic elections and now the centenary of the ANC.”

Zuma thanked Kenney for his generous donation to the people of Mangaung, Free State and the ANC.

Kenney said it was common for people not to know how to say thank you, which was why he came up with the idea of the statue.

“I had this dream to put up this statue in my time,” he said.

Premier Ace Magashule sang praises to Mandela, saying he was a great leader who had been part of the ANC.

“He emerged out of the struggle led by the ANC. We were not to have Nelson Mandela, if there was no ANC. We were not to have President Jacob Zuma, if there was no ANC.”

Magashule said Zuma had also emerged out of the struggle.

“You have not been made by the media. We see in you a product of the struggle. In you we see hope,” he said, adding that Zuma was an intellectual.


Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.