Online archive to share Mandela memories

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The Nelson Mandela Digital Archive project -- a venture between the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory and the Google Cultural Institute -- was launched in Johannesburg on Tuesday.

Vernon Harris of the Nelson Mandela Foundation said the project allowed public access to, and preservation of the former president's life and times.

The digital archive, on www.archive.nelsonmandela.org, meant that "everyone, everywhere" would be able to access the material free of charge.

Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile said he was encouraged by the use the materials had been put to as it stimulated social justice.

"Through this project, we are sharing (Mandela's) legacy of dedicated service to humanity, reconciliation, freedom... and dignity for all."

He said his department was finalising plans for digitalising national archives.

The project incorporates letters, photographs and audio-visual material of Mandela, the context of these, and other people's memories of the icon of democracy.

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