A week that was – Gug’ Othandayo

Department of Social Development 31/10/2019 - 10:11



There is an old saying that with age comes wisdom. This is what we have witnessed when Older Persons across all nine provinces came together to proudly celebrate South Africa's rich and cultural diversity through dance, music and golden games. The mood was out of this world as they interacted, connected and reunited with old friends and they were beaming with excitement and joy.

Active Ageing aims to extend life expectancy and quality of life for all the people as they age. This programme was commemorated in Port Elizabeth from 21-25 October at Nelson Mandela University Indoor Sports Centre.

The National Golden Games 2019 kick started with Parliament for Older Persons which serves as a platform to raise and address all issues concerning safety and security of the senior citizens.

On the second day, senior citizens came out in full force to proudly showcase their identity and showed-off their cultural attires through music and cultural dance. Bright colours were the order of the day as they represented the rainbow nation.

On the third day, a summit was held where senior citizens were cautioned about the risk of gambling addiction. The aim of this presentation was to inform, empower and enhance understanding of excessive gambling. "Older persons are vulnerable and most are victims of gambling," said Limpopo MMC of Social Development Ms Rose Mathukha in her closing remarks. She further urged them to share the information they have received with other fellow friends and families at home.

The African Proverb which says "Kuguga Othandayo" was reiterated by oldies as they geared up for Golden Games which commenced on 24 October 2019 and ended the following day. The spirit of resilience that our senior citizens displayed when they defied age and challenge themselves to be active, is truly commendable. They have set bar very high and led as an example that nobody is ever too old to strive for excellence.

The two-day games were declared officially opened by Deputy Minister of Social Development Ms Hendrietta Bogopane Zulu followed by parade led by the South African Police Services brass band and a procession of participants from each province.

Some of the games they participated on were duck walk, dress up, pegging the washing, jukskei, ruby ball throw, ring the stick goal shooting and female soccer.

"Some people hate it, some people love it but regardless of your feelings, exercise and physical activity are very important if you want to live better and longer." says 71 years old Rostah Duma from KwaZulu Natal.

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