The National Heritage Council in collaboration with the Umngeni Municipality marked the 60th anniversary of the capture of our former statesman, Nelson Mandela at the Nelson Mandela Capture Museum in Howick on 27 August 2022. An intergenerational dialogue was hosted at the museum attended by the community, learners from local schools and Umgungundlovu Municipality dignitaries.
Mr Edgar Neluvhalani, handed over a token of appreciation received by Mr Zuma on behalf of the
Nelson Mandela Capture Site Museum. “You will have something great to tell to your children, grand-children and great-grandchildren, that you were there at the 60th commemoration of the capture of uTata Nelson Mandela”, said Neluvhalani.
His Excellency Christopher Pappas, Umngeni Local Municipality Mayor, delivered his welcome address with Rudyard Kipling’s inspirational poem, “IF”. He said “This poem contains values and principles upon which we make our decisions to lead”. He further said, “I’m indebted not only to the legacy and the life of Nelson Mandela but to the honourable guests here today”. “As part of our strategic outcome and informed by our mandate, we have what we call the Community outreach as a way of raising awareness around our liberation heritage and involve the public to reflect collaboratively on our history for resistance and liberation against colonial and apartheid rule”, said Chief Executive of the NHC, Dr Ndivhoniswani Lukhwareni. “We want our youth over and above the popular culture they are entangled in, to know that we are here because some people sacrificed, worked hard and travelled long distances so that we can be where we are today” said Dr Lukhwareni as he concluded his opening remarks.
Dr Abraham Serote, from the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture delivered a key note address and painted a picture of what transpired prior to the statesman’s arrest.“60 years ago Mandela set out on a journey from Johannesburg to Natal. The purpose of the journey at the time was for Mandela to meet President of the ANC, Chief Albert Luthuli. The business trip was really about to brief Chief Luthuli on the business trips that Mandela had undertaken to East and North Africa” said Dr Serote. Dr Graham Dominy, NHC Council member, shared his experiences of working with President Mandela and hislegacy in the Archives and heritage space.
Dr Dorcus Ettang, Political Science Senior Lecture at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal reminded audience in the room about the values that make up our heritage when
she asked, “What is our heritage? Ubuntu”. The potential of the Nelson Mandela Capture Site was
evident to all who took a tour to know more about its heritage. Many, including the community believe that it can become a global tourist attraction which educates the world about the anti-colonial history in Africa, in general and South Africa in particular.