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Z. Mandela: Address to 2nd Africa Summit

Address to Africa Summit 2018, Cape Town, South Africa, Nov. 21–25, 2018


Your majesties, your Royal Highness, and to our traditional leaders as represented by the National House of Traditional Leaders, the Provincial House of Traditional Leaders, CONTRALESA (The Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa), and traditional leaders from across the landscape and breadth of our continent. Our religious leaders gathered here this morning; to our honorable madam Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of South Africa; honorable members of the Parliament, particularly in the ANC (African National Congress) caucus, who are gathered with us this morning; colleagues; honorable members from the Pan-African Parliament, led by the Honorable President Roger Nkodo Dang, and other pan-African delegates gathered here. The diplomatic corps, all the ambassadors that are with us. The various speakers that have traveled from different countries to be here. Our African brothers and sisters that are gathered with us.

Also the friends that have traveled from the international community—as far as Brazil, Bolivia, Japan, Korea—let me take this opportunity to welcome you and also the UPF leadership, in particular, the Honorable Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, Mother Moon, who has come to pay us a visit in the Mother City.

Your excellencies, elders, mothers and fathers, ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, good morning. We are gathered here at the foot of Table Mountain, a beacon on the tip of the African continent that is millennia older than humanity and a defining feature of this beautiful city of ours. 

For those who were incarcerated on Robben Island [as political prisoners], such as my grandfather, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, Table Mountain stood out as a beacon of hope and a promise that they, too, will rise above the stormy seas of occupation, banishment and suffering.

For many of those who were incarcerated on Robben Island, this enduring symbol was a solace in the darkest hours when they were far removed from their families, comrades and loved ones, as their hearts echoed the divine cry: “I lift up my eyes to the mountain. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.”

Today, we gather here from all over the world to honor the life and legacy of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, a colossal mountain among men. His life and legacy will, like this mountain, continue to inspire us and stand as a symbol of what is best in us–to stand firm for justice, to be relentless in the pursuit of peace, and to be a true champion of human dignity and a voice for the voiceless people in the Western Sahara, in Palestine, in Syria, in Kashmir.

His historic struggle has inspired many to also dedicate their lives to serving the human family and to give hope to the hopeless, to care for the destitute and to build a heavenly highway to a world where we can all live together in peace as one family and as equals before God Almighty.

This gathering in tribute to Madiba, as members of the Mandela family so affectionately used to call him, is also a manifestation of the colossal contribution of two great visionaries of our time: Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, whose work extends over 155 countries and has touched the lives of many in the quest for peace, human development and prosperity. Their work demonstrates that we can and must work for the common good, transcending the barriers of race, culture, gender and class.

The Universal Peace Federation brand has become synonymous with peace as they have [established initiatives bringing together] parliamentarians for peace, tribal leaders for peace, and religious leaders for peace.

A good tree bears good fruits, and just as our global icon and hero has become a symbol for millions around the world, so too has the work of UPF received wide acclaim.  We salute you and are humbled as the Mandela royal family by your contribution and your generosity in upholding the life and legacy of the father of our nation and our global icon.

This Africa Summit, announced by His Excellency President Cyril Ramaphosa, is the highlight of celebrating 100 years of the life and legacy of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.

We dedicate the next 100 years to the youth of our country, of Africa and of the world.

May the memories of Madiba that we recollect, honor and celebrate over the course of this Africa Summit continue to educate and inspire generations to come.

Let us cultivate our youth for peace on this very day. On the 22nd of November 1997, in his address to the Men’s March in Pretoria, my grandfather reminded us that our children and youth, in particular, are “our greatest treasure. They are our future.” Let them tell his story in every city and every village. Let his name echo from their lips in every valley, let his name be heard from every mountaintop.

In welcoming each and every one of you to this Africa Summit, honoring the life and legacy of President Mandela, we do so in the acknowledgement that you, too, are the torchbearers of his legacy and the values he espoused. He was part of the collective in the African National Congress. We, the Mandela family, may regard him to be a member of our family, but it was always clear for him that his political home was the African National Congress.

Madam Speaker, we are truly humbled as a family to welcome the entire ANC caucus here to be part of this Africa Summit. Cape Town extends a warm welcome and a special word of welcome to Mother Moon, to the Mother City, as well as Dr. Young Ho Yun, for his wisdom and inspired leadership. Dr. Thomas Walsh, the UPF International president; Katherine Rigney, the UPF-Africa president; and all in the UPF family who have worked tirelessly over the past few months to stage a world event in honor of Nelson Mandela’s centenary.

Today, you are here to break ground and make honoring the life and legacy of Madiba a reality. God bless Africa, God bless the Africa Summit. I thank you.



To go to the 2018 Africa Summit Schedule page, click here.