‘What can you do for your country ?’
“What will you do with your education in your country at Nelson Mandela University to change the world, for your family, your community, your profession, your future, which will contribute to the growth and development of Africa that leads to a better life for you? everyone?”
This question from Chancellor Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi calls on graduates to go out into the world and change it by doing whatever it takes to strengthen democracy, equality, and justice in their respective careers.
The chancellor was addressing more than 650 graduates from the country when she opened the morning and afternoon sessions on Friday.
“It is up to you to ask yourself this question, to commit to strengthening democracy, equality and justice in whatever life path you pursue, to keep making difficult things happen, including, and very importantly, making sure that you do your job of doing “Society is a safe space for women and men in this era of intolerable gender violence that we are seeing on our campuses and in our society, and in doing so, play its role in changing the world,” said Fraser-Moleketi.
“We are all aware of the growing cynicism about democracy and equality, but the achievement of a more egalitarian society is not lost, you are the new leaders and shapers of our society, our country, and it is in your hands to respond to this challenge and reconsider how each of you, with your excellent qualifications, can play your role in reforming society to improve, change negative mentality, face fear, boldly embrace life beyond college, dream of bold dreams. ”
Friday’s graduation sessions saw four notable South African people, Vuyo Mahlati, Sibongile Mkhabela, Frank Chikane and Morgan Chetty, whose work resonates with the university’s decision to serve society, awarded honorary doctorates in recognition of their contributions to the search for Democracy and society in the country. to defend justice.
COUNTRY INCLUSIVE GROWTH
Mahlati, a social entrepreneur and change agent born in the Eastern Cape, was honored for his work in intensifying the global call for inclusive economic growth, and his erudition and pr-axis of entrepreneurship and economic development, particularly in rural economies marginal.
Having grown up in rural areas, obtaining his primary education in an agricultural school where his mother taught him and attending a missionary boarding school, Mahlati’s passion for seeking alternatives to the oppressive education system of the time arose at an early age.
His life as an activist was enabled by education. She began her career as a researcher on disability issues, children and women, and later became a mentor for business links in the Small Business Development Agency.
This led her to participate in the South African process to draft a Constitution after the release of Nelson Mandela from prison.
Mahlati also participated in the first report of the United Nations Children’s Fund on the first state of women and children in South Africa.
At the graduation ceremony, he said: “Inclusive growth is not assimilation or forcing others into spaces with which they do not identify,” he said. “It implies the reconfiguration of the ecosystem in one that respects and recognizes the reality of all and allows the effectiveness, the contribution of all, requires the development of support systems and new instruments, which learn from each other.
“It also pushes us to create new innovative, inclusive and sustainable institutions that are owned by everyone with pride and that serves everyone equally.”
COUNTRY CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
A social worker by profession, Mkhabela’s career has been driven by tireless social activism. She was among the 11 student leaders arrested in connection with the student uprisings of 1976 and went on to live a life dedicated to the cause of social justice.
In charge of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, he focused his efforts on converting it into an independent and self-sufficient organization that prioritizes the rights and welfare of children. The fund now goes beyond the borders of South Africa and supports institutions that improve the lives of children on the continent.
Mkhabela was honored for her role in promoting the establishment of a children’s hospital in South Africa, with its educational aspect focused on improving the quality of pediatric care and research and training in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as her work on development issues. through the United Nations Educational Program in South Africa.
By accepting his honorary doctorate, Mkhabela spoke about the role of education in the liberation of people.
“When the poor educate their children,” he said. “It is true that education helps the individual to earn better and obtain perspectives through exposure to the world in general, but the real meaning of” education “resides in his capacity for liberation, it must be that for each one of us who ends up the school, our communities are richer for that “.
THE RESOLUTION OF CONFLICTS IN THE COUNTRY
Chikane was honored for her contribution to the development and promotion of the African Renaissance and her participation in the conflict resolution processes in South Africa.
His political activism emerged at the beginning of his education in the 1970s, when he became involved in the activities of the South African Student Organization. This led to his repeated detention, which interrupted his education and forced him to leave the university in 1974.
The following year, I joined the evangelistic organization, Christ for all nations, convinced of God’s call in his life. He continued to serve the country in several ways, including his role in the political transition talks and in the first democratically elected government.
In her acceptance speech, Chikane expressed her gratitude for the recognition of her lifelong work and her contribution to establishing a just, non-racial, non-racial society.
“My generation and those who came before us ‘discovered’ their ‘mission’ and did not betray it, however imperfect and risky they are, we did everything possible to fulfill it, today we have a rights-based constitution that saved us from capture of our state to serve the few at the expense of the masses of our people, “he said.
“This congregation of scholars and related achievements gives me the hope that you have the capacity to seize the moment and fulfill your mission.”
COUNTRY QUALITY HEALTH
Chatty has been in charge of family medicine for approximately 40 years, dedicating His Life to Promoting access to quality health care through a patient-centered approach with a focus on the poor and marginalized.
In 1998, I raised funds and gathered doctors to start the first truly democratic medical organization, the South African Managed Care Coalition, to which I was elected president. The goal was to bring the doctors together to be profitable and provide comprehensive and quality medical care.
He was also instrumental in establishing one of the first post-apartheid black-owned hospitals in Durban, Mount Edgecombe Hospital.
“We have a world level characterized by a level of economic development, a technological advance, an increase in financial resources and millions of people living in extreme poverty,” he said, before describing the effects of poverty. and inequality in the provision of quality. Health for all.