HEALTH / FITNESS NEWS
July 18, 2012 12:00:00 AM
  Follow @ Twitter

South Africa's 12 million schoolchildren sang happy birthday to Nelson Mandela as he turned 94 on Wednesday, at the start of events to honour the country's first black president.

At 8:00 am (0600 GMT), children began their day at school with a special birthday song ringing with the line: "We love you father".

"This is a very important day for all of us," said Paul Ramela, principal at a primary school in Soweto.

"We are here to celebrate the birthday of a very important person, a person who has liberated us from apartheid," he told his students. "Mandela spent 67 years of his life to improve the lives of other people. He has done so much for all of us."

Mandela himself was unlikely to make any public appearance, but rather to celebrate quietly with his family in his village home of Qunu.

His granddaughter Ndileka Mandela told the Sowetan newspaper that his family would celebrate with a traditional meal of tripe and samp, a corn dish popular in his region of the Eastern Cape.

"We will probably have food like samp and tripe, his favourite food," she told the paper. "The big lunch will be at 4:00 pm (1400 GMT) where we will present him with a cake."

Former US president Bill Clinton met with Mandela at his village home on Tuesday. A photograph released after the meeting showed Mandela seated in an armchair, his lap covered by a blanket, as he held Clinton's hand.

Images of the Nobel Peace Prize winner have become rare in recent years as he has retired to Qunu. He was last seen in public at the closing ceremony of the 2010 World Cup in Johannesburg.

AFP




 


PREVIOUS STORY
Physical inactivity kills 5 million a year
NEXT STORY
'First superstar' of Bollywood dies

Bookmark and Share
   




FIJI NEWS
Civil servants trained to write good submissionsAgency Desktop Submission writers from various government ministries and departments as well as several statutory bodies are being trained to write good submissions for their respective agencies.
SPORTS
Ryan confident of a good outing in last legVodafone Fiji 7s coach Ben Ryan is confident his team can deliver the best of results for the final two tournaments of the HSBC Sevens World Series in Glasgow and London.
LIFESTYLE/FASHION
Sigatoka resort to close for renovationYatule Beach Resort along the Coral Coast will be closed from next week for renovations as its management seeks to increase the resort's profitability.
ENTERTAINMENT
Kiesza scores UK number 1 with HideawayCalgary-born 25-year-old Kiesza has her first UK number 1 single with Hideaway.
OFFBEAT
Mercury 'took Princess Diana to gay barQueen singer Freddie Mercury disguised the late Princess Diana as a male model and smuggled her into a notorious gay bar, according to a memoir serialised in Britain's Sunday Times.
NEWS SPORTS INFOTAINMENT SERVICES MOBILE EXTRA HOT TOPICS