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23. May 2016

South Africa's Minister Pandor Awarded Germany's Grand Cross of Merit

naledi pandor

"With the Grand Cross of Merit, we recognise Naledi Pandor's continuous efforts to deepen cooperation between our two countries," said German Ambassador to South Africa, Walter Lindner, at a ceremony last month.

Germany has awarded South African Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, with the Grand Cross of Merit.

"Pandor is for us a symbol of the new South Africa: modern, innovative, dedicated to scientific progress and also outstanding female leadership," he said.

The minister said she was humbled and honoured by the privilege.

"In particular, I am pleased that we have been able to benefit from very strong relations with the science community from Germany," she said.

According to the German Embassy in South Africa, the minister has been actively promoting the bilateral partnership between the two countries. She was key in the design and orientation of the German-South African Year of Science.

"Together, we launched the 2012/13 German-South African Year of Science to celebrate the scientific collaboration and partnership between our countries," Pandor said in her speech.

"During the year-long series of events, joint ventures between institutions in our countries were expanded, science and technology among the young people of German and South Africa popularised, and South Africa and Germany were promoted as key locations for strong research-based companies."

Theodor Heuss, the first president of the Federal Republic of Germany, introduced the Federal Cross of Merit in 1951 to "visibly express recognition and gratitude to deserving men and women of the German people and of foreign countries", the embassy said.

It is given for achievements which serve to improve the country in the political, socio-economic and intellectual fields – "an award to all those whose work contributes to the peaceful rise of the Federal Republic of Germany".

Sources: Department of Science and Technology and the German Embassy in South Africa

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