The Diplomatic Society

 
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

National Orders bring back memories

8 December 2015, Pretoria

A woman who was one of the five international members of South Africa’s 16- member Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) that organised the first democratic elections in 1994 was honoured for her work on Tuesday.

She also assisted the late former President and struggle icon, Nelson Mandela, cast his ballot paper during the democratic elections.

Professor Gay McDougall from the United States, was amongst recipients of National Orders bestowed by President Jacob Zuma to deserving local citizens and eminent foreign nationals at the Sefako Makgatho Presidential Guesthouse, in Pretoria.

The ceremony took place for the 21st time, honouring people who have contributed immensely towards the advancement of democracy, excelled in various endeavours as well as those who have made a significant impact on improving South Africans lives.

Through the ceremony, government recognises the contributions they have made towards building a non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous South Africa.

McDougall was awarded a National Order of the Companions of Oliver Tambo. This order is bestowed on those who actively promoted freedom, justice, human rights and democracy, through active support and expression of solidarity for the struggle against apartheid colonialism, beyond the country’s shores.

Speaking to SAnews shortly after receiving the award, she said receiving the order had brought back numerous memories about the history of South Africa, the liberation struggle and the political transition from apartheid to democracy.

“I am so thrilled to get this honour today, especially in the name of OR Tambo who was one of the true heroes of my life. I first met Tambo in London in the late 1970s… that was the door opener for me and the African National Congress (ANC),” said McDougall.

She said she was thrilled to have been part of the turmoil and transition the country has gone through.

She also remembered being in Lusaka with OR Tambo and liberation movement stalwarts. “I remember walking to get thousands of South Africans out of jail, [those] who were detained on political charges… I remember being here for the country’s first democratic elections… there are so many memories brought by this,” she said.

President Jacob Zuma referred to McDougall as a renowned legal scholar who was one of the international members of the 16-member IEC that organised the democratic elections.

“She also played an immense role in dismantling the maze of apartheid laws, thereby helping the birth of a new dispensation and a new nation,” said President Zuma.

McDougall said, during that period, she and other IEC members were frightened that they would not be able to pull off the elections.

“The stress that we felt as a commission, it was a very difficult time. I remember most of all the 27 April 1994, when the sun came up and all the problems faded away, and long lines of people waiting to vote peacefully and quietly.

“I remember standing next to Nelson Mandela as he voted for the first time… a great, tremendous honour for me,” she said.

Looking toward the future, McDougall said she had put her faith in South Africa’s youth to take the baton and move the country forward.

The National Orders are the highest awards that the country bestows on its citizens and eminent foreign nationals.

President Jacob Zuma said for all the immeasurable efforts and gestures of solidarity by recipients, the country remains eternally grateful.

“We salute all our recipients. All have contributed to building a better South Africa, a better Africa and a better world,” he said.

The Order of Mendi for Bravery was bestowed on Jetro Ndlovu, Joe Morolong posthumously, Caleb Motshabi posthumously, Eric Mtshali and Mpumelelo Washington Bongco posthumously.

The Order of Ikhamanga, which recognises South African citizens who have excelled in the fields of arts, culture, literature, music, journalism and sport, was bestowed on Themba Patrick Magaisa, Mbulaeni Mulaudzi posthumously, Darius Mfana Dhlomo posthumously, Winnie Mahlangu, Ramakgobotla John Mekoa and Mbulelo Vizikhungo Mzamane posthumously.

The Order of the Baobab, which recognises South African citizens who have contributed to community service, business and economy, science, medicine and technological innovation, was bestowed on Yvonne Mokgoro, Douglas John Anderson, Mary Makobatjatji Malahlela posthumously, Andrew Ross, Otto Stehlik and James David Lewis-Williams.

The Order of Luthuli recognises South African citizens who have contributed to the struggle for democracy, nation-building, building democracy and human rights, justice and peace as well as for the resolution of conflict. The order was bestowed on Kay Moonsamy, William Frankel, Johnson Malcomess Mgabela posthumously, Petros Nyawose posthumously, Jabulile Nyawose posthumously and Mohammed Tikly. – SAnews.gov.za

Photo: GCIS

 

 

 

More News

 



Commemorating the 160th anniversary of Joseph Conrad Korzeniowski20/11/2017
article thumbnail

Commemorating the 160th anniversary of Joseph Conrad Korzeniowski 20 November 2017 The Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Pretoria organized a special screening of the Polish – British film “S [ ... ]


Action packed Wolf Warrior II20/11/2017
article thumbnail

Action packed Wolf Warrior II 20 November 2017 The Embassy of China in South Africa hosted a reception for the screening of the Chinese movie Wolf Warrior II in Pretoria. Welcoming guests Ambassado [ ... ]


Zambia Independence Day16/11/2017
article thumbnail

Zambia Independence Day 25 October, 2017 Zambia says her democratic credentials have remained admirable since the introduction of multi-party democracy. Zambia’s High Commissioner to South Afric [ ... ]


Algeria National Day 201716/11/2017
article thumbnail

Algeria National Day 1 November 2017 Ambassador Abd-El-Naceur Belaid of Algeria hosted a reception to celebrate the 63rd Anniversary of the launching of the Algerian Revolution. He said that it was  [ ... ]



 

 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
_________________________________________________

October 2017 Edition

 
 
_________________________________________________

Translater


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Baz-Art graffiti exhibition at the French Residence in Pretoria On Wednesday 4 October 2017, Ambassador of France to South Africa, H.E. Mr. Christophe Farnaud, and NGO BAZ-ART hosted an exhibition... <|> African Union and Germany agree on further cooperation Addis Ababa, 5 October 2017 The annual bilateral consultations on the development Cooperation between the African Union (AU) and Government of... <|> South Africa and Turkey commit to grow trade and investment 6 October 2017 South Africa and Turkey have committed to strengthening trade and economic relations to increase two-way bilateral trade... <|> Tango Spectacular Rodolfo Mederos Trio in South Africa 10 October 2017 Tango legend Rodolfo Mederos from Argentina will be delighting South African music lovers with his trio this month. Mederos... <|> Easing travel regulations between South Africa and Kenya 3 May 2016 South Africa and Kenya have announced measures that will make travelling between the two countries easier. South African Home... <|> AU needs active participation to advance Africa 10 October 2017 The African Union (AU) needs solid support from its member states and organs to help the continent achieve political and economic... <|> Building Bridges between Europe and Asia: Dr Kiril Avramov   2017-10-12 The New Bulgarian University (NBU) is one of Bulgaria’s top-ranked universities at the heart of Bulgaria’s capital,... <|> Russian heroes honoured 12 October 2017 At a ceremony to hand over names of Russians who lost their lives in the pursuit of freedom for South Africa, Ambassador of Russia, HE Mikhael Ivanovich... <|> GHANAFEST SA 2017 - A resounding success 20 October 2017 A bird's eye view of the Magnolia Dell Park in Pretoria, South Africa, on Saturday, 7th October 2017, was characterized by the colorful... <|>   Diversity – what? 17 November 2017 I bump into a lot of industry initiatives. Not many of them are noteworthy. This one is! Two years ago, I was invited by a friend to a small... <|>
© copyright 2011-2017| The Diplomatic Society| All Rights Reserved.