Today was a surprise day…sort of. The night before Marit came up to our rooms and talked about our exciting day plans. We were to meet Ahmed Kathrada, a political activist/prisoner during Apartheid, and Nelson Mandela’s close friend/mentee.
We all arrived at the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation around noon. We had a chance to ask questions about his unique past and his feelings about the current South African government. We also met and spoke to another important figure of the Apartheid resistance movement, Laloo Chiba, another political prisoner, and close friend of Kathrada and Mandela.
Both of them discussed their future goals for the foundation: turning South Africa into a non-racist society. To accomplish that goal, the foundation is creating more anti-racism programs and tools/research for youth to handle racism and strive to be future leaders. Ahmed discussed hatred within the society and the limits to that resentment,”We can’t rebuild our nation with bitterness, only forgiveness.”
We listened to their experiences as activists and prisoners. We heard about their troubling times in prison and their encounters hiding from the government (Kathrada was imprisoned 25 years and Chiba 18 years).
After our talk, we stopped by a few galleries on the north side of Johannesburg for to browse and shop.
We ended off our day with going to our daily stop, Woolworths, to prepare for our Kruger weekend.