Zuma bestows national orders on Madikizela-Mandela, Maharaj

By Drum Digital
28 April 2016

President Jacob Zuma on Thursday bestowed national orders on men and women who had "demonstrated exceptional service to humanity", including ANC stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela and his former adviser Mac Maharaj.

Pretoria -

The two were awarded the Order of Luthuli.

This order is given to South Africans who have made a meaningful contribution in the struggle for freedom, democracy, human rights, nation-building, justice, peace and conflict resolution.

"The award also goes to a struggle veteran who served a long prison term in Robben Island, many years of service in exile and in underground operations in the country, Mr Mac Maharaj," Zuma in his address prepared fro delivery at the ceremony held in Pretoria.

"He has also served in the post-apartheid government as minister and also as presidential advisor in the fourth and fifth administrations, until his retirement in 2015."

Maharaj, resigned as Zuma's special advisor on communications at the end of April last year, a position he had since January 2009.

He was also diagnosed with lung cancer last year and underwent surgery in August.

Conferring the order on Madikizela-Mandela on Thursday, Zuma called her a "courageous woman who became a symbol of the struggle against apartheid".

'A formidable force'

Madikizela-Mandela endured periods of prison detention and banning orders by the apartheid government from 1958 and through subsequent years. This included a nine-year banishment period in Brandfort, in the Free State, the president said.

"She was not deterred by the persecution. She became a formidable force, facing the enemy head on, in the pursuit of freedom. Our people salute her."

Madikizela-Mandela was not at the ceremony because of her health. She was recovering after undergoing back surgery.

Earlier this month, Neeran Naidoo of the Nelson Mandela Foundation, issued a statement at the request of the Mandela family, confirming that Madikizela-Mandela was in a Johannesburg hospital.

"Her first surgery, for compression of the spinal nerve and pain relief, took place on March 8. It was followed by a second procedure on April 14 to assist with her recovery," Naidoo said.

Zuma wished Madikizela-Mandela a speedy recovery.

Other people awarded national orders were:

The Order of Mendi for bravery

- Hermanus Gabriel Loots aka James Stuart (Posthumous)

- Maqashu Leonard Mdingi

- Ulysses Modise (Posthumous)

- Peter Sello Motau aka Paul Dikeledi (Posthumous)

- Wilson Ndaliso Boy Ngcayiya aka Bogart Soze (Posthumous)

- Joseph “Mpisi” Nduli (Posthumous)

- Sam Ntuli (Posthumous)

- Major General Jackie Refiloe Sedibe

- Dr Sizakele Sigxashe (Posthumous)

- Major General Peter Lesego Tshikare (Posthumous)

The Order of Ikhamanga - South Africans who have excelled in the fields of arts, culture, literature, music, journalism and sport

- Order was bestowed in bronze on Laurika Rauch

Order was bestowed in silver on: Thomas Hasani Chauke; Sylvia “Magogo” Glasser; and Marguerite Poland

- Order was bestowed in gold on: Benedict Wallet Vilakazi (Posthumous) and Professor Rosina Mamokgethi Phakeng

The Order of the Baobab - South Africans who have contributed to community service, business and economy, science, medicine and technological innovation

- Order bestowed in silver on Professor Helen Rees

- Order bestowed in gold on Marina Nompinti Maponya (Posthumous)

The Order of Luthuli 

- Order bestowed in bronze on Suliman "Babla" Saloojee (Posthumous)

- Order bestowed in silver on: Brian Francis Bishop (Posthumous); Msizi Harrison Dube (Posthumous); Rev Dr Simon Gqubule; Mary Thipe (Posthumous); Amy Rietstein Thornton; and John Zikhali (Posthumous).

- Order bestowed in gold on Cleopas Madoda Nsibande.

The Order of Mapungubwe - South Africans with achievements that have impacted internationally and served the interests of the country

Order bestowed in Gold to Zwelakhe Sisulu.

The Order of the Companions on OR Tambo - eminent foreign nationals for friendship shown to South Africa

- Order bestowed in silver to Noureddine Djoudi (Algeria) and Maria Petronella Adriana Kint (The Netherlands).

- Order bestowed in gold on Chilean President Michelle Bachelet Jeria.

Source: News24

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