It is with great shock and sadness that we learn of the devastating explosion that took place in Beirut, Lebanon and express our heartfelt condolences with the government and people of Lebanon.
The Royal House of Mandela is committed to ending human suffering all over the world and to create an awareness of our inter-connectedness and common humanity. We strive for upholding justice and building networks that uphold human rights and dignity for all.
The unfortunate event in Beirut has caused much suffering and loss of life and apparently was caused by the explosion of 2750 tonnes of ammonium phosphate that was kept in storage at a facility in Beirut. We convey our sincere condolences to the families of the estimated 100 people who have lost their lives and we wish the more than 4000 injured people a swift recovery.
Whilst the exact cause of the event has not been determined, the devastation was reminiscent of the days when Beirut was engulfed in similar devastation. We appeal to global governments, relief organizations and AID agencies to come to Lebanons aid as the damage is estimated at more than USD 5 billion.
We make a special appeal for assistance from our relief agencies, mosques, temples and churches and other NGO and community based organisations amidst very critical prevailing local economic conditions but the best time to come to other’s assistance is when we ourselves are suffering.
South Africa has a vast and longstanding Lebanese business community and we express our condolences to them and pray for those whom may have lost near and dear one’s in the catastrophe. We trust that they will reach deep into their pockets and support relief and rescue efforts.
We must remain vigilant of the modus operandi of Apartheid Israel and its agents in the region who would benefit from creating such instability, fear and panic especially in the wake of its stated intentions to annex 30 percent of the Jordan Valley and wipe historic Palestine off the map. We hope that we can dismiss this possibility but only time will tell.
May the souls of the deceased rest in peace and may the injured find comfort and relief from their pain and suffering.
Nkosi Zwelivelile “Mandla” Mandela, chief of the Mvezo Traditional Council and grandson of famed South African President Nelson Mandela. Member of Parliament (MP) South Africa National Assembly. All articles by Nkosi Zwelivelile “Mandla” Mandela