Pretoria – Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe has called on African scholars and academics to harness scientific knowledge to tackle the continent’s problems.
Education, he said, has the immense power to transform and is a foundation for freedom, democracy and sustainable human development.
“In this regard, our duty as leaders, intellectuals, academics, and educationists is to commit ourselves to equip the African child from birth to retirement with the cognitive and education tools that encompass a life-long commitment to learning and to generating knowledge within the context of abiding loyalty to the African interests,” said Motlanthe.
He was speaking in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, during the 20th anniversary of the Solomon Mahlangu Freedom College (SOMAFCO).
Motlanthe also used his speech to call for the same spirit of solidarity against apartheid to be used to address Africa’s developmental challenges.
“No single African nation will be able to transcend these strangulating challenges, including the current global economic crisis, all on its own,” said the Deputy President.
He emphasized the need for African countries to be self-reliant.
Relying on ourselves, Motlanthe said, presupposes observing particular irreducible principles and an adherence to norms and values that underpin any striving for self-development.
“…Values that guarantee self-development include democracy, rule of law, good governance, education, health, and the desire to empower ordinary Africans to fend for themselves in their daily lives in conditions congenial to the fulfilment of human development,” he added.
Motlanthe was in Tanzania to participate in the O.R Tambo Annual Educational Tour aimed at carrying forward the legacy of SOMAFCO.
SOMAFCO was established by the African National Congress to cater for the educational needs of South Africa’s young people who were forced to live in exile in the years of the liberation struggle.
The college represents a monument of the solidarity between Tanzanian and South African people.
Motlanthe was accompanied by International Relations and Cooperation Deputy Minister Marius Fransman; Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture Dr. Joe Phaahla; Deputy Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Thabang Makwetla and Public Enterprises Deputy Minister Gratitude Magwanishe.
Source: SA News – Press Release – 10 July 2012