On 2 December, 2018, Global Citizen brought together its largest contingency of heads of state, dignitaries, a group of the world’s most talented artists and influencers, and thousands of global citizens to celebrate the centenary of Nelson Mandela.
Bonang Matheba, Trevor Noah and Naomi Campbell, took to the stage at FNB Stadium, to host the Global Citizen Nelson Mandela Centenary festival.
Other world icons included none other than Oprah Winfrey, Gayle King and Tyler Perry while the global line-up of music artists was nothing short of stellar – from SA’s own Cassper Nyovest and Sho Madjozi to Nigeria’s D’Banj, WizKid, Tiwa Savage and Femi Kuti to international stars including Ed Sheeran, Pharrel Williams, Usher, Coldplay’s Chris Martin and a show-stopping performance by Beyonce and Jay Z.
The December event was the culmination of international advocacy group, Global Citizen’s Mandela 100 campaign; a series of global events honouring the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela.
A poignant series of drawings by Nelson Mandela, called the Struggle Series, served as an inspiration for the festival. The drawings which feature Mandela’s hands represent not only the story of his life but also the story of his country. They depict his hands in five positions representing: struggle, imprisonment, freedom, unity and the future. They also depict the motivation behind actions that Global Citizens have been taking this year to see the end to extreme poverty in our lifetime.
The festival also culminated a six-months long campaign engaging Global Citizens around the world on seven global goals: ending poverty and hunger, promote global well-being, equal access to quality education, ending all forms of discrimination against women and girls everywhere, universal access to clean water and sanitation and addressing the threat plastic pollution poses to the oceans.
Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 set a historic stage for not only donor countries but also for African countries standing up for his hope for the future, making sure that Africa was standing up and getting its voice heard.