Twelve million students sing for Mandela at 93
Some 12 million students in South Africa on Monday rendered a special “Happy Birthday” song in unison nationwide before they started their lessons as a mark of honour for the man that has been described as the greatest African.
Also, a group called “Bikers for Mandela” rode around the country for eight days doing volunteer service, including painting playgrounds and planting trees. Their trip was scheduled to end in Pretoria on Mandela Day.
Under South Africa’s apartheid regime, Mandela spent 27 years in prison after being convicted of sabotage and attempts to overthrow the government. He was released in 1990 and became president in 1994.
The United Nations joined his foundation in urging the world to perform 67 minutes of public service.
“Together, the best way we can thank Nelson Mandela for his work is by taking action for others and inspiring change,” U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon said last week.
“Tutor a child. Feed someone less fortunate. Care for your environment. Volunteer at a hospital or community center. Be a part of a global movement to make the world a better place,” Ban said.
U.S. President Barack Obama, whose wife, Michelle, met Mandela last month, said the icon is “a beacon for the global community” and for those who fight for justice.
Nelson Mandela turned 93 on Monday surrounded by family, as South Africans paid tribute to his legacy by performing at least 67 minutes of public service. He spent 67 of those years for public service.