ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS
By: Bliss Ndapasowa
Many South African heroes have remained unsung despite their immense contribution in the betterment of South Africa and the world at large.
This was witnessed at the 6th Annual eThekwini Living Legends Awards 2013 Gala Dinner hosted by the Department of Parks, Recreation and Culture yesterday at the Durban International Conference Centre.
The ceremony sought to appreciate the city’s selfless individuals that showcased the best in human endeavour and the spirit of Ubuntu within the country’s diverse and multicultural society.
In his welcoming remarks, the head of eThekwini Municipalitys Parks,Recreation and Culture Unit, Thembinkosi Ngcobo, described the 10 activists that were being awarded as people that have made a great contribution to society for the benefit of their communities.
“These people have spoken less and acted more,” he said.
Amongst the living legends that were honoured this year was Reverend Sue Britton, an individual who fought tirelessly for non-violence and reconciliation during the apartheid era.
On receipt of her accolade, Rev. Britton described legends as people who remind the society of the positive values of human beings. She mentioned Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jnr as her personal inspiration and referred to them as legends of all time.
Sportsman and activist, Tich Smith was also celebrated this year for his selfless work in conducting feeding schemes, accommodating orphans in KwaZulu-Natal and educating them through his Lungisani Indlela Trust.
“It is my wish that everyone who steps at King Shaka Airport will say to eThekwini that is the city that looks after its children,” said Smith as he ended off his speech in tears.
Other award receipients included celebrated historian Desmond Makhanya, traditional healer Mkhuluwe Cele, member of the ANC’s Veterans League Mary Mkhwanazi, founder of Ladysmith Black Mambazo Albert Mazibuko, founder of the Durban Boys Brigade Samuel Draai, chartered accountant Sizwe Nxasana, Ranjith Kallya a photographer, and vice chancellor of the University of KwaZulu-Natal Professor Malegapuru Makgoba.
Inanda Seminary received a special award as the oldest boarding school for African girls in KwaZulu-Natal with 144 years of existence and was described as the beacon of light for education during apartheid. Ladysmith Black Mambazo was recognised with an award of the same kind for placing the province on both national and international scale musically.
The event was graced with magnificent music from the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra and guests were swept off their feet by music from songstress, Gloria Bosman and the Clairmont Community Choir.