King attends unveiling
Busts, peace pillar represent and honour unity among all the people of Kwazulu-natal
PRAISES of “Bayede, Wena wendlovu” greeted the arrival of King Goodwill Zwelithini kabhekuzulu at Mitchell Park on Thursday. The occasion was the unveiling of bronze busts of the king, former president Nelson Mandela and the Sivananda Peace Pillar. The celebration of South African heritage was hosted by the Sivananda World Peace Foundation (SWPF).
Sivananda Peace Pillars contain the essential teachings of Indian sage Swami Sivananda. It displays the key doctrines of all the main religions of the world, a list of 20 of Swami Sivananda’s spiritual instructions, the universal prayer and a short summary of the religious leader’s life and mission.
The busts on either side of the pillar were erected to honour King Zwelithini and Madiba’s contribution to serving the people of South Africa through nation building, peace building, non-violence and efforts towards eliminating poverty.
Kwazulu-natal businessman Ishwar Ramlutchman Mabheka Zulu, founder of the SWPF, committed himself to the installation of eight Sivananda Peace Pillars across South Africa in devotion to the late Sri Swami Sahajananda.
This project was initially started by Sivananda in India.
Sahajananda was the spiritual head of the Divine Life Society of South Africa and had a close relationship with the Zulu monarch and Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.
The movement has contributed in the field of education by building over 300 schools in rural areas when the apartheid government provided limited schooling for black children.
Ramlutchman explained to the audience that included members of the royal house, community leaders, school children and members of the Mitchell Park Trust: “We the people of South Africa feel fulfilled that humanity has taken us back into the bosom. We who were oppressed will continue to aspire to have a better society.
“Let us accept each other as a brother, sister or child of God. Together we stand united and let peace prevail on our sacred soil, South Africa and Kwazulu-natal in particular.”
Traditional prime minister of the monarch, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, paid tribute to Ramlutchman as the project’s benefactor.
Buthelezi said it was fitting that the pillar was flanked by the statues of the two peace builders.
Human Settlements and Public Works MEC Ravi Pillay, deputising for Premier Willies Mchunu and the provincial government, said: “Any fool can make war but it takes great wisdom to build peace.
“When the children visit here, we hope they will learn the lessons of Madiba’s life and we hope that they will learn about it in their schools as well.
“For me it is a principle of sacrifice, discipline and leadership that was demonstrated throughout his life.”
About King Zwelithini, Pillay said: “He has been a custodian of unity, culture, heritage and social cohesion. At the time of xenophobic outbreaks, not too long ago, only when the king stood up and said, ‘Not in my name, not in our province,’ was it brought to a halt.”
In his keynote address, the king placed emphasis on social cohesion. He said that he had a constitutional duty to promote unity among people of all origins in Kwazulu-natal. A FREE convention, where various Islamic organisations will interrogate societal contemporary issues by using the teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, is planned for Durban.
The Universal Messenger of Mercy and Hope (Ummah) Convention will take place at Overport Secondary School grounds on December 1 and 2.
The convention, which is being hosted by the Sunni Jamiatul Ulema (SJUSA), is a first for the city.
Chief executive of the SJUSA, Nazir Malek, said the purpose of their twoday event was to educate the general public through structured presentations on everyday issues.
Malek said there would also be stalls showcasing various civil service organisations that have adopted the prophetic model in achieving their aims of uplifting communities in various sectors, such as welfare, education, women and child abuse, medical assistance, drug rehabilitation and other forms of social responsibility.
“Each of these organisations will also have representatives available to engage with and provide assistance, and a bookshop with relevant literature will also be available.
“There will be high-profile government, religious and civic leaders who will address the convention,” said Malek.
Salaah facilities, a food court and entertainment for the children will be available, and the programme will end with a lucky draw for a free Umrah ticket, Malek added.