Religion: celebrated scholar to address symposium in city

2011-04-14 00:00

ONE of South Africa’s most celebrated scholars on African religion and the ANC chief whip in the National Assembly, Dr Mathole Motshekga, will deliver a keynote address at a one-day interfaith symposium in Pietermaritzburg tomorrow.

The event is organised by the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature and is scheduled for the Legislature’s Main Chamber at 9 am.

Spokesperson for the legislature Wonder Hlongwa said the symposium will aim to engage religious leaders to participate actively in the governance of the province.

“More than 200 delegates from different religious groupings, including Christians, Hindus and indigenous African religions, will discuss various issues under the theme ‘The role of interfaith groupings in strengthening and deepening democracy in South Africa’,”

Hlongwa said the church has an important role to play in helping the government realise its five priorities — the improvement of access to quality healthcare and education, the fight against crime, creation of decent jobs and rural development and land reform.

In a separate function, Premier Zweli Mkhize will lead a march with religious and community leaders from across KwaZulu-Natal in the streets of Pietermaritzburg on Saturday to call for peace in the province during the local government elections on May 18.

Mkhize’s spokesperson, Ndabezinhle Sibiya, said the march will culminate in the unveiling of the historic four-ton granite Peace Pillar that will tower 3,5 metres high and be inscribed with prayers from the world’s major religions.

The event marks the launch of the KZN Peace Awards, with the initiative driven by KZN business and community leader Ishwar Ramlutchman together with the provincial government.

The unveiling of the Peace Pillar will take place at the Carbineers’ Heritage Garden outside the Pietermaritzburg City Hall.

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