President Cyril Ramaphosa has lauded the Global Citizen Festival for its work, calling on South Africans and people of the world to be the generation that ends poverty.
“We are united in Madiba’s vision of a world where every human being lives in freedom and prosperity. His spirit is the driving force behind the Global Citizen movement.
“By your mere presence here, you have declared that poverty is a stain on the conscience of humanity and that we will all work together to end poverty.
“Let us be part of this mission. Let us be the generation that ends poverty,” said the President.
The Global Citizen Festival which is an annual music festival organised by the Global Poverty Project took place at the FNB Stadium on Sunday.
The project is a movement that seeks to bring an end to extreme poverty by 2030 as part of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Global Citizen works across the 17 global goals including food and nutrition, water and sanitation, girls and women, the environment, health and finance and innovation.
This year, the movement saw several South Africans take part in actions and activities that seek to bring an end to the global challenges.
Through the actions taken, R98 billion was raised for various causes. President Ramaphosa topped it up, bringing the figure to R100 billion.
“R98 billion has been made tonight and we as South Africans will top it up to R100 billion,” said President Ramaphosa.
The R100 billion coupled with 57 major commitments on education, sanitation and health is set to affect the lives of 137 368 628 people.
The festival formed part of the centenary celebrations of the late former statesman and global icon, former President Nelson Mandela.
Renowned talk-show host Oprah Winfrey, who was tasked with introducing the President, called on people to embody Madiba’s values of humanity.
“Every one of us has the ability to comfort and strengthen somebody through small acts of kindness and in doing so we create a much deeper faith in humanity,” she said.
Presenting the headline acts at the Global Citizen Festival, American comedian Dave Chapelle described Beyoncé and Jay-Z as representatives of the black movement.
And they lived up to the description by putting on a show celebrating black culture and encouraging the theme of love as an emotion that transcends all challenges.
The couple gave the scores of people in attendance a show to remember with electric performances that saw them pair up with both international and local artists.
Donning a leather jacket embroidered “Madiba” on his back, rapper JayZ and Beyoncé with several costume changes paid homage to the late icon and statesman Nelson Mandela’s legacy.
Partner and host of the Global Citizen Movement, Patrice Motsepe of the Motsepe Foundation pledged billions towards the sustainable development goals.
Motsepe announced that his family, under his charity foundation, will donate R3.5 billion to assist with the sustainable development goals and the issue of land reform in the country.
On this, he was joined by, among others, Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini, leader of the Zion Christian Church Bishop Barnabas Lekganyane, and leaders of AgriSA, the Black Farmers’ Association, African Farmers Association of South Africa, and the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu).