YESTERDAY marked a significant and highly important day in the calendar of the country, continent and global village at large. On that day a hero, a revolutionary and an international icon was born.
As this region, we are particularly humbled and honoured to be named after such a man as Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
Tata Nelson has dedicated his life to the just cause of liberating his people from the shackles and bondage of the evil and unjust apartheid system.
He sacrificed close to three decades of his life being imprisoned for fighting for a better South Africa.
Today as this generation we are able freely to participate in activities that never existed before for a black man. Today we can express ourselves in education, policy formulation, entrepreneurship and economic participation without fear of intimidation or incarceration.
Tata Mandela and his generation sacrificed their private lives, families and professions, and joined the just cause of national liberation. Though we eventually achieved the freedom that Mandela fought for, legacies of the apartheid regime still confront us even today.
The structure of the economy is still unbalanced, and youth is faced with poverty, unemployment and the HIV/Aids pandemic.
As the chamber which is the recognised voice of black business, we pledge to stand on the shoulders of these giants and will continue fighting for the integration of blacks into the mainstream economy.
We still look forward to drawing from that intellectual well of wisdom of Tata Madiba and wish God can preserve him to see that we did not take the struggle for granted.
Tata, we will always love and cherish you!
Luvuyo Ponase, Nafcoc Youth, NMB regional secretary