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Human chain to remember Madiba

Date Released: Tue, 11 February 2014 15:35 +0200

Thousands of Grahamstown residents are expected to take to the streets on Friday in an effort to unite the city by forming a 5km human chain in memory of Nelson Mandela.

From the poverty-stricken streets of Joza and into the city's affluent business heart, rich and poor have been urged to join hands to try to bridge the class and race divide that is still alive in Grahamstown 20 years into the "new" South Africa. More than 5 000 people are expected to take part in Friday's lunchtime chain that will start in Joza's famous Ncame Street and end in the town's Somerset Street.

"This chain will pass through three areas and through past divides and can serve as a symbol of integration," organiser Roger Domingo said. "We continue to live in very divided societies where past divides and great inequality exist, but these are the things Madiba fought against and we should be conscious of this.

We can still come together and be united and keep striving towards those values of an equal society." He said the event afforded people the opportunity to meaningfully reflect on how the values of democracy, non-racialism and equality exemplified by Mandela could be revived.

Co-organiser and director of Community Engagement at Rhodes University Diana Hornby said: "Madiba brought a divided people into a nation and ... we should reflect on how we move forward. One way is the human chain way, acknowledging our role in building and shaping a new, just society in Grahamstown."

The human chain idea was conceived by Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of the Anglican Church last year and resulted in 5 000 people lining Cape Town's streets.

By: David Macgregor

Article Source: The HERALD (Morning Final)

Source:The Herald