Rev Jesse Jackson impressed with South African growth and progress
“More people have houses now, drinkable water and can work in high places,” he said at Zwide Cemetry in Port Elizabeth yesterday, 20 October, where he laid a wreath at the grave of ANC struggle hero, Govan Mbeki. “People are free today to do what they want without fear. However they are free but not equal.
“Equality is the next dimension of our struggle as Apartheid has many layers. We still have Apartheid of our minds and our bodies,” he said.
Jackson who was on a tour of the city with members invited member of the Eastern Province media and councillors of the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro, including Metro’s Executive Mayor, Benson Fihla.
He reminded the gathering that during the dark days of Apartheid many men and women fought for the liberation of South Africa and its people facing racial degradation and even death at the hands of evil men. “Evil men crucified these leaders but God resurrected them. There are those who can still tell us their story.
“Nelson Mandela is recognised as the face of the struggle but there are leaders like your Mayor that deserves praise for their role. It seems like people are not aware of his role,” Jackson said.
“There are those who can still tell us their story. Your Mayor Benson Fihla] spent 14 years on Robben Island and under house arrest and it was not for a traffic stop. To have someone with the legacy of the anti-Apartheid struggle like him leading this city is a great blessing.”
Jackson is in Nelson Mandela Bay to deliver the annual Govan Mbeki lecture at the Feathermarket Hall this evening. Jackson was last in Port Elizabeth in 1979 but he has been in other parts of South Africa a few times since thenandela Bay.
Jackson is known for his anti-Apartheid and anti Segregation in America stance. He negotiated the release of 47 Americans and other nationalities after the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq in August 1990 among many other achievements.
See related article… and photos of Jackswon at various stops in the city of Port Elizabeth yesterday during a tour with media and Nelson Mandela Bay Metro councillors:
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