In commemoration of the life and achievements of political activist, Dr Chota Motala, Mancosa [GSB] hosted the 2nd annual Dr Chota Motala Memorial lecture on Friday 27th November 2015. According to the principal of MANCOSA, Prof Yusuf Karodia, this lecture celebrates Dr Motala as an intellectual and caring medical professional who selflessly served communities of activists and countless struggle heroes. He added that these values of courage, intellect and commitment to the development of the less privileged are virtues that MANCOSA aims to embody through its value systems, its students and staff.
Members of Dr Motala’s family, including his wife and children and dignitaries such as the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Pravin Gordhan and the speaker of eThekwini Municipality, Councillor Logie Naidoo, graced the occasion. Mr Irshad Motala, son of the late Dr Chota Motala, said that it was an honour and privilege for his father to be celebrated. He expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation to MANCOSA for initiating and hosting the lecture. Irshad said that his father was a man of the people and that he interacted with all people regardless of their background or identity. Mr. Irshad Motala further stated that his father’s political philosophy was truth, honesty and service to others and that he actively defended the truth and fought fearlessly for what was right. The memorial lecture, he said, was not just to remember a good man but also an opportunity for people to remind themselves that the struggle for social justice must continue.
In his address, the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Pravin Gordhan said that Dr Motala was first and foremost a great humanist who effortlessly fought for social justice. He added that Dr Motala worked with disadvantaged South Africans and that their plight created a determination in him to fight for a just society. According to the Minister, Dr Motala was passionate about non-racialism and non-discrimination and that he worked hard to bring people together and turn them into an effective movement. He further stated that Dr Motala was instrumental in the reconciliation of all groups in South Africa after the release of former President Mandela in 1990 and that he helped to pave the way forward for a democratic society. Dr Motala, he said, participated in actively changing the world and a number of political activists were mentored and inspired by him. The minister finally challenged the present generation of South Africans to aspire to some of Dr Chota Motala’s values such as non-racialism and to take the initiative to effect positive changes in the South African landscape.
The programme ended with an acknowledgement by the principal of MANCOSA and a vote of the thanks delivered by a MANCOSA staff member. |At dinner the Motala family, dignitaries and guests had the opportunity to meet and socialise.