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Date: 27 Apr 2012
Title: Pay tribute to the struggle heroes and heroines
Pretoria - Department of Justice and Constitutional Development Deputy Minister, Andries Nel, says Freedom Day gives people an opportunity to pay tribute to the struggle heroes and heroines who fearlessly sacrificed for a free and democratic South Africa.
"We salute these men and women past and present, for it is through their selfless struggles that South Africans enjoy the benefits of our constitutional democracy," he said.
Addressing the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) yesterday, Nel said South Africa is firmly set on the road to peace and prosperity.
Nel said the country must reflect on the gains that have been achieved and also be mindful of the journey that lies ahead in strengthening the country's democracy.
"As we celebrate freedom day it is necessary to reflect on the history that made our constitutional democracy a reality.
"We have learnt over the first Freedom Year that there is no short-cut to making South Africa the country of our dreams," he said.
Nel said as a country people should take pride in the country's national anthem, national flag, national coat of arms, national orders and the national symbols, as they are all intertwined and linked and each have its own rich and unique story and place in the history of South Africa.
The President awards national orders to deserving citizens and eminent foreign nationals who have contributed meaningfully towards making the country a free, democratic and successful nation, united in its diversity.
This year 31 South Africans, including struggle heroes, will be awarded the highest orders that can be bestowed on a person. -BuaNews