University Of Fort Hare Graduation 2017, the University of Fort Hare concluded its 94th graduation ceremony at the Alice sport complex on 12th May 2017 with one of the two surviving treason trialist Dr Dennis Goldberg, who delivering a keynote address and on behalf of Raymond Mhlaba who received a Doctorate of Philosophy in Social Sciences, posthumously. Oom Ray was the first Premier of the Eastern Cape Province and was sentenced to life in the now famous treason trial.
Goldberg referred to Mhlaba as organically intellectual who refused to sit in an ivory tower but understood the relationship of the people and poverty, and that such situations could be turned around by the unity of the people. Mhlaba was influenced by international political trends hence he understood mobilization of workers against structural racism, said Goldberg. He further elaborated that Mhlaba lead from the front and at some point knew that apartheid was living on borrowed time and as such could not allow development of personal ambitions as that would be a betrayal of the greater course.Goldberg called upon South Africans to restore the values of the Freedom Charter which also found expression in the constitution of the Republic of South Africa.
The graduation ceremony was also attended by Zimbabwe’s Minister of information, media and communication, Mr. Chris Mushowe. Being the last day of the graduation and traditionally the biggest due to the faculty of Social Sciences large numbers of grandaunts, and with the now famous University Choir, the occasion was joyful and a happy day with many family and friends filling the sports complex to its capacity.