Millions of South African children sing for Mandela Day

15:07, July 19, 2011      

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Millions of schoolchildren throughout South Africa sang a special rendition of "Happy Birthday Madiba" on Monday morning to mark Nelson Mandela International Day.

Madiba is the clan name of Mandela, South Africa's iconic founding president who celebrated his 93rd birthday on Monday. Thousands of South Africans from all walks of life pledged to devote 67 minutes doing good works in recognition of the 67 years Mandela spent striving for a free South Africa.

Released in 1990 after spending 27 years in prison for anti-apartheid activities, Mandela was South Africa's first democratically elected president from 1994-1999.

Talk Radio 702 in Johannesburg reported that South Africa's minister of basic education, Angie Motshekga, said "I am deeply humbled by the response from our learners and from educators.

The extra support from the broader community and the media to jointly play and sing the song will go down in history as one of the most memorable events in South Africa since the dawn of democracy."

In statement, the minister said the campaign received overwhelming feedback from all corners of the country. All provinces reported that the South African national flag was hoisted, the national Anthem was sung and children stood side by side in their millions and sang happy birthday with pride.

Source: Xinhua
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