Nelson Mandela Bay Freedom Day celebrations attendees set and smash world records

APRIL 28, 2015

Over 1 170 residents from Nelson Mandela Bay set two new world records and smashed another on Freedom Day at the Wolfson Stadium, KwaNobuhle.

Set against the backdrop of celebrating the 21st anniversary of freedom and democracy in South Africa, the Bay - branding itself as the City of Champions - set the record for the most number of people doing the Macarena dance, as well as the famous SA "bus" dance, whilst smashing the record for the largest human wrist-clasping chain, the previous record having been about 500 people.

Executive Mayor Benson "Oom Ben" Fihla reminded everyone that unity was the value that the city's namesake and SA's first President, Nelson Mandela, stood for, and that "this unity is the legacy that we should strive to protect." Oom Ben said that it was particularly poignant that these records were broken on Freedom Day, which is the ultimate expression of unity in our city among all our communities.

Portfolio Chairperson for Sport, Recreation, Arts & Culture (SRAC), Nomamerica Soul, said that it was important that we use sports, arts and culture as unifying endeavours as they transcended race, ethnicity and gender.

An excited event organiser and City of Champions brand owner, Mazizi Msutu, said that he was thrilled at the turnout and the diversity of the group.

"During the wrist-clasping world record, there stood side by side the Mayor of our city, the chairperson of the SA Council of Churches, young and old men and women, educated and uneducated, businessmen and workers, employed and unemployed, united behind the legacy of Madiba, saying that as Nelson Mandela Bay we unite."

"Through this display of unity and show of force we have sent out a resounding message that says: 'never in a city names after our icon shall we ever allow xenophobia or crime to retard our freedoms'. The people have spoken today as they did on 27 April 1994!"

According to Msutu, the records would be confirmed by independent adjudicators and a portfolio of evidence will be submitted to the Golden Book of World Records, the World Record Association, Record Setter, as well as the Guinness Book of Records.