The Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation will on Sunday unveil a statue in Bloemfontein in honour of Dr. Leabua Jonathan.
This is part of the department’s efforts to transform the heritage landscape in the Free State province.
In a press statement, the department said the historical role played by the late Jonathan in the liberation struggle of South Africa is well documented, therefore honouring him becomes imperative. Jonathan was Lesotho’s first prime minister.
The post-apartheid democratic government of South Africa honoured Jonathan by awarding him “The Order of the Supreme Companion of OR Tambo” in 2007 to appreciate this role that he played in the freedom struggle of this country.
In the statement, MEC Mathabo Leeto said the Free State was proud to honour those who have contributed enormously to the democracy and freedom South Africans enjoys today.
She noted that building monuments and statues of iconic role players who played an imperative role in the liberation of South Africans during dark days was the historical mission that the government has set for itself and embarked upon. Leeto said the unveiling of the statue follows on the footsteps of the unveiling of statues of struggle icon Oliver Tambo as well as Cubas former president Fidel Castro.
“Unveiling these statues contributes towards efforts to transform our heritage landscape to ensure that part of our history which deals with the anti-apartheid liberation struggle is preserved and celebrated,“ said Leeto.
Dignitaries and communities from both Lesotho and South Africa are expected to the historical event.