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In Remembrance: Madiba

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The Trustees and Staff of ACCORD record our sincere condolences to the Chair of our Board, Mrs Graça Machel and to the entire Mandela family for the sad loss of their dear husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. We are eternally grateful for his life and for the sacrifices they endured to give us an inspiring leader of liberation, peace and reconciliation!

It is with pride that we at ACCORD recall these words of Madiba, ‘the principles underpinning ACCORD’s operations are the very ideals for which humanity has striven for centuries – peaceful resolution of conflict, human rights and good governance’. These were his words when he delivered his acceptance of ACCORD’s Africa Peace Award given to him in 1995, in recognition of the same ideals … and Madiba did us proud by sticking steadfastly to these ideals until his death. As we pen these remembrances of this great man, our nation, and nations all across the world, are in mourning over his passing away … and in these moments of contemplation, when we reflect on the life of this great man, we must ask ourselves how we will honour his legacy. He leaves us with lessons of fearlessness and conviction, sacrifice and endurance, patience and principle, and forgiveness and reconciliation. He departs us in a time that is troubled and in dire need of the very lessons his life epitomised. He also leaves a world that knows no equivalent of his remarkable leadership … a leadership that was transformed, through action, into statesmanship and evolved into becoming the conscience of our humanity.

It is true that few who walk this earth will have lived such a life as his … but if each of us remember the energy he invested in the struggle to free us, and the years he endured in prison, resisting his freedom, until we were all free, then we will appreciate that a little time and energy from us to practice his lessons will ensure that his sacrifices were not in vain…this is how we can honour his legacy!

Hamba Kahle Tata … go in peace … know that we at ACCORD shall strive to live up to your ideals … for they too are the ideals for which humanity has striven for centuries!

ACCORD, Durban, South Africa
December 2013

In Remembrance: Billy Modise

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H.E. Ambassador Billy Modise was the former South African Chief of State Protocol. He was also the former South African High Commissioner to Canada. Ambassador Modise servered on a number of boards, including those of South African Airways and Kgodiso Investments.

In 2008 Ambassador Modise received the Order of Luthuli – Silver Class from former President Thabo Mbeki for excellent contribution in the achievement of a South Africa free of racial oppression and contributing to the building of a non-racial, non-sexist and democratic South Africa. He also received the Premier’s Excellence Award from the Premier of the Free State for his contribution towards the liberation struggle and South Africa in general. In 2017, Ambassador Modise was bestowed the Swedish Order of the Polar Star by the Swedish Ambassador to South Africa. Ambassador Modise was a member of ACCORD’s Board of Trustees from 2007 until his passing in June 2018.

It was with great sadness that ACCORD announced the death of ACCORD Trustee H.E. Ambassador Billy Modise. H.E. Ambassador Modise passed away on the evening of June 20th 2018 after a long illness. He was 87 years old.

H.E. Ambassador Billy Modise was the former South African Chief of State Protocol and the former South African High Commissioner to Canada. Ambassador Modise served on a number of boards, including those of South African Airways and Kgodiso Investments. In 2008 Ambassador Modise received the Order of Luthuli – Silver Class from former President Thabo Mbeki for excellent contribution in the achievement of a South Africa free of racial oppression and contributing to the building of a non-racial, non-sexist and democratic South Africa. He also received the Premier’s Excellence Award from the Premier of the Free State for his contribution towards the liberation struggle and South Africa in general. In November 2017 the Swedish Ambassador to South Africa, H.E. Ambassador Cecilia Julin, at the decision of His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, bestowed the Order of the Polar Star on H.E. Ambassador Billy Modise. Ambassador Modise joined ACCORD’s Board of Trustees in 2007.

A true gentleman who represented the kindness, humility and humanity we would all aspire to emulate, respected and admired by all who met him, he will be sadly missed by his ACCORD family.

The Trustees and Staff extend their deepest condolences to Mrs Modise, his daughter Thandi and the rest of the Modise family.

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