Item 1464 - Message by President Mandela to Under 20 Soccer Team : Message by Pres. Mandela to Under-20 Soccer team, 17 June 1997

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ZA COM MR-S-1464


Message by President Mandela to Under 20 Soccer Team : Message by Pres. Mandela to Under-20 Soccer team, 17 June 1997


  • 1997-06-16 (Creation)

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Transcription of speech made by Mr Mandela

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(18 July 1918-5 December 2013)

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Migrated from the Nelson Mandela Speeches Database (Sep-2018).

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  • English

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The date on the SA Government Information is 17 June 1997, whereas the hardcopy on the NMF files states 16 June. Since the message refers to June 16 as the date of the letter,we have decided to date the letter on that day and added 17 June in the sub-title.



Matthew Booth
Captain South African U-20 Soccer Team

Dear Matthew

It is with a deep sense of honour that I once more send a message of encouragement and good wishes to a South African national team. I feel even more honoured that I am directing it to our Under-20 squad.

It is common to say to a team of your calibre that you are the stars and champions of the future, in anticipation of the role all of you should play in Bafana Bafana soon. But you have brought glory to your country already. Your achievements in the Africa Youth Championships are unequalled. You are the first South African team to qualify for a continental championship. Now you are the first to earn a place in a world contest. I am, therefore, very proud of you and I am certain that the South African people share similar feelings about you. You have made it your calling to bring joy and celebration to your country and people.

I am sending this message to you on June 16th, South African Youth Day, a day on which we celebrate the achievements of our youth and honour them for their contributions in reconstructing and developing our country.

The amount of goodwill your achievements generate for our country is invaluable. I consider myself exceptionally fortunate to be blessed with young men and women of your stature as our ambassadors. I am confident that you will acquit yourselves well in the World Youth Soccer Championship.

I wish you luck and success.


Nelson Mandela President Republic of South Africa

Issued by: Office of the President

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Acquisition method: Hardcopy ; Source: Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessioned on 08/02/2010 by Zintle Bambata




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