SABC News - Young and old run in memory of Mandela :Saturday 13 February 2016

Young and old run in memory of Mandela

Saturday 13 February 2016 21:06

Chris Mabuya

The late former president was released from the prison, then named Victor Verster, on 11 February 1990.(SABC)

Young and old have commemorated the release of Nelson Mandela during the 27 For Freedom race at the Drakenstein Correctional Facility on Saturday.

The late former president was released from the prison which was then named Victor Verster on the 11 February 1990. He was
incarcerated at the institution for more than a year before his release. On Saturday some race participants covered 27 kilometres in his honour.

Correctional Services Regional commissioner, Delekile Klaas, says, "It has become and iconic house a tourist attraction so we are in discussion with the Departments of Arts and Culture and the Department of Tourism to make sure we open the doors of that house for the public to go and see where the iconic leader was kept, and what exactly took place in that house."

One of Mandela's closest friends and fellow Rivonia trialist, Ahmed Kathrada, used the event to recall his visit to the statesman before his death. "He held my hand my hand tightly and he could just respond by shaking his head, and that was the last I saw him. It was a great honour to be commemorating the great day of his release."

Meanwhile, Siviwe Nkombi - the race winner - described the run as memorable. "I enjoyed the race - the best part of the race was at 12 kilometres, at 12 kilometres I was just cruising."

More than 5 000 people participated in the event which included a 10 km race and a five kilometre fun run.

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