Reliving South Africa’s first Freedom Day

first_img25 April 2012 Ahead of Freedom Day on 27 April – this year marking the 18th anniversary of South Africa’s first post-apartheid election – political activist and women’s rights campaigner Amina Cachalia shares her memories of Nelson Mandela’s inauguration as the country’s first democratically elected president.Memories of a special day Cachalia has vivid memories of that day, 10 May 1994, when she saw a friend of many years become president of the country. “It was a moment that I don’t think I will ever forget – when Mandela stood up and took that oath,” she says. “In my wildest dreams I never thought I would be party to that day.” Cachalia and her late husband Yusuf were invited to the inauguration as VIP veterans. Both were prominent political activists in the struggle against apartheid. He was a leading figure in the South African Indian Congress in the 1940s and 1950s and played a key role in bringing about African-Indian cooperation during the 1952 Defiance Campaign. Cachalia is well known for the role she played in promoting rights for women during apartheid. In 1948, she was instrumental in launching the Women’s Progressive Union, an organisation with the aim of making women financially independent. The union, which functioned for about six years, offered classes in literacy, shorthand and typing, baby care, dress-making and music. In 1954, she also took the lead in launching the Federation of South African Women. The organisation’s goal was to oppose the proposed extension of pass laws to black women, which culminated in the 1956 Women’s March to the Union Buildings to protest against apartheid pass laws.‘Every Freedom Day, I cast my mind back’ Cachalia enjoys sharing her experiences of the inauguration ceremony. Eighteen years have passed since then, but she recalls the smallest details as if it happened just the other day. When Cachalia talks about the inauguration, she shifts in her chair and leans forward, eager to tell a good story. “Every Freedom Day, I cast my mind back to relive the day,” she says. “We received a printed invitation for the ceremony and instructions about how to get there. It was all beautifully spelt out for us,” she says. She smiles as she recalls how she went about deciding what to wear for the important occasion. “I looked for a sari with the colours of the ANC, but I couldn’t find one. “I settled for another one in my cupboard, it was a deep reddish colour.”Fidel Castro, Benazir Bhutto It was a beautiful sunny morning and the couple was seated in the amphitheatre, two or three rows behind Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Among the many prominent dignitaries she saw at the ceremony, two stood out: Cuban politician Fidel Castro and Benazir Bhutto, who served as the 11th prime minister of Pakistan from 1988 until 1990, and 1993 until 1996. “She was quite a striking woman,” she adds. Cachalia pauses for a while. A myriad of thoughts came to mind when she arrived at the Union Buildings. “I had been at the Union Buildings before, for the Women’s March and about my banning orders – usually to demonstrate or show my disapproval about something,” she says. But this time was different. “I was here on a different wicket altogether. I could see that everything we fought for was not in vain,” she says.Appreciating freedom For Cachalia, the inauguration gave new meaning to all the years she lived under banning orders. After the 1956 Treason Trial, activists were all regarded as threats to the government and in 1963 a number were banned. Cachalia wasn’t exempt and in November 1963 she was banned for a period of five years. She remembers the day she was handed her first banning order. “I was on the phone to Helen Joseph when the police delivered the order,” she says. And this was just the first of three banning orders – when her first ban was about to expire, she was served with another, and then another. She remained under banning orders for fifteen years. The banning orders restricted her movements, her ability to associate freely with people and put a stop to her political work. She couldn’t attend social and political gatherings, couldn’t leave the magisterial district of Johannesburg, and couldn’t enter any publishing house or educational premises. “It was a disgusting restriction on one’s life in general,” she says. Amid the hardships of apartheid, Cachalia says that they had to create their own fun. She laughs when she remembers the many parties that took place. “We carried on with life and we made the best of what we had,” she says. She picks up a photograph displayed on the bookshelf in her lounge, taken many years ago at a party hosted by Madikizela-Mandela at her home for friends and comrades. “This is the only photo of me and Chris Hani together,” she says. It was taken just before he was assassinated in 1993.Telling South Africa’s story Her life today is a world apart from what she experienced for so many years under apartheid, but although things have changed, some things are forever with her. Sometimes she still gets that strange feeling that someone is listening in on her conversations, or that her phone is tapped. After years of living under banning orders, “freedom” took on a different meaning for Cachalia – it is a sacred treasure. “I can do as I please and read what I want to. I am enjoying my freedom, I am enjoying my life,” she says. She often thinks back to the struggle years. “It was such unbelievable times we lived through,” she says. Cachalia says it is important to ensure that the memories of the struggle years are kept alive, otherwise future generations won’t understand South Africa’s hard-won freedom. “The inauguration was a special time for South Africa and the world,” she says. “It was absolute euphoria, and the excitement never left us.” First published by MediaClubSouthAfrica.com – get free high-resolution photos and professional feature articles from Brand South Africa’s media service.last_img read more

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Total Force Fitness and Military Families Learning Network: Network Literacy

first_imgIn this week’s Friday Field Notes, we will continue our exploration of the resources and programming that Military Families Learning Network provides to support Total Force Fitness with our Network Literacy team.Network Literacy and Total Force FitnessNetwork Literacy’s work directly supports social and psychological fitness in their efforts to increase resilience through relationships and networks. Through their programming, Network Literacy helps individuals build the skills they need to grow and maintain their own supportive network. Supportive networks are a key piece of the puzzle when it comes to maintaining social and psychological fitness.The Resilience Series, a collaboration between Network Literacy, Family Development, and Family Transitions, is a three-part series that examines factors promoting individual, family, and community resilience. The series begins next week, on Tuesday, August 20th, at 11am Eastern Time, with Nurturing Individual Resilience from a Multi-System Developmental Perspective.As a part of the Building Networks for Resilience learning experience, Network Literacy produced a five-part Working Out Loud for Resilience podcast. In addition to providing more information on Working Out Loud and ways to improve one’s own resilience, in each podcast, listeners are given specific strategies they can incorporate into their daily lives to improve their networks and build resilience.Finally, keep an eye out this fall for an exciting new podcast series produced by Network Literacy. The podcast will focus on themes that tie together the work of military family service providers across disciplines. It will be a catalyst for conversations that connect us, help us collaborate, and lead to greater impacts for the people we serve.Additional Resources from Network LiteracyNetwork Literacy provides programming aimed at increasing relationship building, personal growth, and shared work to help individuals build resilience. Network Literacy provides webinars, podcasts, and timely blog posts as a part of their programming. And make sure to keep up with Network Literacy on twitter!last_img read more

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Demolition drive sparks a row in Tripura

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Perlas spikers rally past BaliPure to keep semifinal hopes burning

first_imgIn the darkest moments of the match Saturday night, Perlas-BanKo found a way to shine.ADVERTISEMENT Perlas BangKo worked its way to a rousing 24-26, 13-25, 25-13, 25-22, 15-11 win over BaliPure and remain in contention for a semifinals berth in the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference at FilOil Flying V Center.“We really held tight. We didn’t want to give up that third set because we know that if we lose it, it’s goodbye to the semis,” said Kathy Bersola, who exploded with 20 points for Perlas-BanKo.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsRefusing to yield that easily, Perlas-BanKo capitalized on an error-prone BaliPure in the third frame. In an instant, the Perlas Spikers were clutching a 20-11 lead that extended the match.But the fourth frame didn’t start well for the Perlas Spikers as they trailed, 7-14, after Grethcel Soltones, who fired 17 points, clustered back-to-back markers. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Church, environmentalists ask DENR to revoke ECC of Quezon province coal plant Trump strips away truth with hunky topless photo tweet View comments Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ FEU Auditorium’s 70th year celebrated with FEU Theater Guild’s ‘The Dreamweavers’ Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’center_img MOST READ But the Water Defenders soon fell into complacency and committed easy errors, which the Perlas Spikers gamely pounced on through Bersola, Tiamzon and Ella de Jesus.“We have become one solid team and we proved that we can rely on each other,” said Nicole Tiamzon.At 3-3, Perlas-BanKo can make it outright to the next round with another victory.BaliPure is also still in contention but its fate will also depend on the results of other squads.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Thy kingdom come his best is yet to come National Coffee Research Development and Extension Center brews the 2nd National Coffee Education Congress LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

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West Indies vs England 1st Test: I can bowl on most pitches, says Anderson after 4-wicket haul

first_imgEngland picked up four late wickets with the second new ball to turn the first Test against West Indies in their favour, leaving the hosts reeling at 264 for eight at stumps on the first day in Barbados on Wednesday.James Anderson tore through West Indies’ middle order in a devastating late spell, while Ben Stokes chimed in to claim tailender Kemar Roach for a duck with the final ball of the day at Kensington Oval in Bridgetown.While England selected two spinners in Mooen Ali and Adil Rashid, raising eyebrows by leaving out Stuart Broad, it was Stokes and Anderson who did the damage.Stokes collected two scalps with the old ball, before Anderson struck three times with stumps looming.The veteran first had Roston Chase caught at first slip for 54, before Shane Dowrich (0) spooned a catch to second slip.Anderson then snaffled all-rounder Jason Holder caught-and-bowled for five as the large contingent of English fans in the crowd finally found their collective voice.Anderson finished the day with 4-33 off 24 miserly overs, including 12 maidens, while Stokes had 3-47.Anderson’s excellent harvest was a welcome change from a barren visit to Sri Lanka, where he took one wicket in two Tests.”I’ve always enjoyed the challenge away from home but it’s often been difficult to get to grips with conditions,” he said in quotes published by the Guardian newspaper.”I guess it’s getting to know my game and getting my skills and confidence up.”Now I feel I can bowl on most pitches, though you could probably take Sri Lanka out of that.advertisement”Tours like that make you appreciate when there’s a bit of something for you. There was a bit of swing here even though the wicket was pretty flat.”While it was a promising day for the hosts until the final hour, they could pay the price for the inability of any of their top order to convert good starts into big scores.Five of their batsmen made at least 40, but none reached 60.Openers John Campbell (44) and Kraigg Brathwaite (40) got the innings underway before Shai Hope (57) and Chase (54) managed half-centuries, while Shimron Hetmyer was 56 not out.West Indies could have been in an even more dire situation had not Hetmyer been let off on three when dropped at extra cover by Jos Buttler.The 22-year-old was then rarely troubled again as he took to the England attack, before the visitors’ dragged themselves back in the final hour.Also Read | West Indies vs England, 1st Test Day 1 Bridgetown | As it happenedlast_img read more

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