Academics and international communities gather to reflect on Africa Day

Acting MEC for Sport Arts and Culture Mavhungu Lerule-Ramakhanya directs the programme for Africa Day Celebration at the University of Venda

Since its formation on the 25 May 1963 by thirty-two heads of independent African States who met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Africa Day commemoration has been observed yearly for sixty years.

The commemoration of Africa Day is a celebration of independence for Africans from colonialism, celebration of African Identity and peace across the continent including the importance of African heritage.

Despite the challenges in the continent, Africa Day brings all Africans to acknowledge miles stones achieved with economic emancipation and priding themselves in being Africans under the theme “Building a Better Africa and a Better World “African opportunities in challenging times.

The partnership between the Limpopo Provincial government, University of Limpopo and University of Venda with international communities held hands to commemorate this year’s event at the University of Venda.

The sixtieth commemoration was attended by academics who shared their views on what Africa Day means and how best can it remain relevant in the next century during evolution of culture.

The main celebration was preceded by a Gala ceremonial dinner hosted by the university of Venda where professor Madimabe Mapaya gave a lecture about seeing, hearing and remembering our African selves focusing on the evolution of African culture and how best Africa month can be utilized to instill African culture and maintain the origin teachings to younger generation.

Professor Somadoda Fikeni believes that Africa still experience socio economic challenges and racial prejudice across the world because Africa was never on the table of discussions but on the menu and, that led to geo political shift.

“Africa has the most youth with the fast middle-class growth yet remains the poorest in the world and that needs to change because Africa has made its contribution to humanity with scientific discovery in technology. Africa has given the world its legendary icons such as Kofi Annan Muhammad Ali and Barack Obama to mention the few”. Said Fikeni

University of Venda represented by the Vice Chancellor and Principal Dr Bernard Nthabeleni said to overcome African challenges, Africa needs to invest in education, innovation and technology and the recently grant awarded to the university by the Medical Research Council to establish the extramural unit for the Antimicrobial Resistance and Global health will improve the wellbeing of African People.

Giving keynote address on behalf of the Premier, MEC for Treasury Mr Seaparo Sekwati said the Africa Day celebrations are aligned with the African continent vision of free trade areas to boost the provincial economy.

“We are the gateway to the South African Development Community. Our strategic geographic location presents socio economic benefits to SADC. We draw our inspiration from the aspirations that Africa is pursuing the African Continental Free Trade by eliminating all trade barriers in the continent resulting in boosting of intra Africa trade.”

By: Emmaculate Cindi

Chairperson of Public Service Commission Dr Somadoda Fikeni gives a presentation during the Africa Day Celebration at University of Venda