AU commission chair urges unity with other African states

Dlamini-Zuma has urged South Africans to remember the role other African states played in the struggle.

African Union Commission Chairperson Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma speaks during a joint press alongside the African Union and Mauritania President, the European Union Council president, and EU Commission President on the second day of 4th EU-Africa summit on 3 April, 2014, at the EU Headquarters in Brussels. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - African Union (AU) Commission Chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has urged South Africans to remember the role other African states played in the country's liberation.

Dlamini-Zuma was speaking at this year's Africa day celebrations in Pretoria this afternoon.

The official Africa day celebrations will be held tomorrow on a day that commemorates the formation of the African Organisation of Unity in 1963.

The organisation is now known as the African Union.

Dlamini-Zuma says it was painful to witness the recent flare up of xenophobic violence.

"Sitting where I was sitting, it was painful. But what warmed us is when we saw the South Africans coming out to say no, we are South Africans, we are Africans."

While Africa Day celebrations continue in parts of the country, Doctors Without Borders (MSF) say over 500 foreign nationals remain at refugee camps in KwaZulu-Natal, still too afraid to return to their homes after last month's xenophobic clashes.

Seven people were killed in xenophobic violence in parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Refugee camps were set up to provide safety to foreign nationals displaced by the unrest.

MSF's Borrie le Grange says they continue to provide medical care, focussing on mental therapy.

"At this stage people are in good health in the camps but at this stage we are focussing more on preparing them mentally for reintegrating into a community which they may have fled earlier and doing so it's very important that people feel they can regain trust."