The Club gave its backing to the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety in a ‘Mandela Day’ initiative on Monday.
Our players joined relatives of Zenani Mandela and her classmates, to raise awareness for road safety on Mandela Day – honouring Nelson Mandela’s 93rd birthday.
In memory of Zenani, who was killed in a road crash on the eve of the 2010 World Cup, both Spurs and Orlando Pirates will wear the UN’s yellow road safety symbol on armbands during the next evening’s Vodacom Challenge match.
In South Africa and worldwide, road crashes are already the biggest killer of young people over the age of 10. And by 2015, in developing countries road traffic injuries will also be the biggest health burden for children over five years old.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), during the course of the Decade, five million lives could be saved and fifty million serious injuries prevented if road safety programmes are implemented worldwide.
Midfielder and South Africa national captain Steven Pienaar said: “Children and young people are too often the victims of road crashes. We are supporting the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety in Zenani’s memory – other families should not have to suffer as the Mandelas have done. We hope that during this Decade of Action, lives can be saved both in South Africa and around the world.”
Zenani’s mother, Zoleka Mandela said: “On the same day of our dearest Zenani's passing, three and a half thousand other families also lost a loved one in a road traffic crash.
“This is the reality of the global road death epidemic, a remorseless taking of life day after day, 25,000 every week, 100,000 every month. This is why the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety is so important. The world has come together and decided that enough is enough. Together, we will work to save millions of lives.”
At a separate event, alongside our initiative to raise awareness for the UN Decade of Action, Zenani’s uncles Zwelabo Mandela and Karabo Lushaba, together with the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the South African Department of Transport and the FIA Foundation, an independent charity, presented the award of the Zenani Mandela Scholarship for Road Safety on Mandela Day.
The Zenani Mandela Scholarship was set up in support of the UN Decade of Action and is a Mandela Day initiative. It serves to help build expertise and capacity to train road safety practitioners in South Africa.