Nelson Mandela International Day: Building a Caring World – Nelson Mandela's Vision
The United Nations General Assembly marked Nelson Mandela International Day with an informal meeting, honouring the leader's contributions to democracy, racial justice and reconciliation.
Speakers at the meeting, "Building a Caring World — Nelson Mandela's Vision", included Jeff Radebe, Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development of South Africa; Professor Ibrahim Gambari, last Chair of the United Nations Special Committee against Apartheid; Enuga Reddy, former Principal Secretary of the United Nations Special Committee against Apartheid; and Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand and former member of the anti-apartheid movement. Two South African graduate students of the University of Cape Town Opera School, Thesele Kemane, a bass baritone, and Bongiwe Nakani, a mezzo soprano, performed during the General Assembly meeting. The Opera School, under the direction of the American Kamal Khan, has made major efforts to cultivate gifted singers and introduce them to the international stage. As a result, some of the world's greatest new classical opera talents over the past few years have emerged from the townships of South Africa.