Don Mattera Lecture

Former President Kgalema Motlanthe To Speak At The 2nd Annual Don Mattera Lecture

Former President of South Africa, Kgalema Motlanthe will deliver the keynote address at the Annual Don Mattera Lecture to be held at the Radisson Blu Gautrain Hotel in Sandton on Saturday, 27 May 2023.


  • The lecture reflects on the life of the world acclaimed poet and author, orator, community activist, struggle icon Dr Donato Francesco Mattera, commonly known as Don Mattera.
  • The theme for the second lecture is ‘The Child’.
  • The lecture will coincide with the launch of the book ‘The Child’, together with the National Heritage Council (NHC) and the Department of Arts and Culture (DSAC).
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In honour of the late Dr Don Mattera, acclaimed international author, journalist, poet, humanitarian and children’s rights advocate who sadly passed away in July 2022, the Annual Don Mattera Lecture is proud to present the former President Kgalema Motlanthe as its keynote speaker.


The lecture will also feature the celebrated Poet & Author Lebo Mashile, who as a respondent, will reflect on her memory of Don and a poem in honour of the doyen of poetry and seasoned broadcaster Iman Rappetti as the Program Director.


The theme is a continuation of the Inaugural lecture theme which is a cause Dr Mattera ferociously championed throughout his life in his quest to uphold the dignity and rights of all children.


A key focus of the lecture will be ‘Creating a Compassionate Adult’ leaning towards the UNICEF expression of focusing on the psycho-social health and wellbeing of ‘The Child’, so that every child is ready to develop and learn.

We are absolutely thrilled to host the former President Kgalema Motlanthe together with acclaimed poet and author Lebo Mashile at the lecture. Compassion is a tenet that was central to Dr Don Mattera and is the thread that runs throughout the work of the Foundation. This lecture will unpack Don Mattera’s lifelong mission to show ‘Compassion for the Child’ and reflect on his life as an activist struggle stalwart, poet, writer, editor and journalist. Simultaneously we will the launch the Foundation’s second book, ‘The Child’, an anthology of poems about children, in partnership with the National Heritage Council and the Department of Arts and Culture.

// Chairperson of the Don Mattera Legacy Foundation, Jenny Jeftha


The Foundation says it is fitting to launch the book, ‘The Child’ given the synergies between the book and the theme of the lecture. The Annual Don Mattera Lecture in partnership with the Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) will be held at Radisson Blu Gautrain Hotel, Sandton from 3pm to 6pm.


The 2nd Annual Don Mattera Lecture will also be live-streamed on YouTube.


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Sandton Times Correspondent

Sandton Times Correspondent

Curated content from The Sandton Times newsroom desks.


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