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Alex mural rallies support for team SA at Paris Summer Games

A mural featuring famous South African athletes aims to unite the nation to support team SA at the Paris Summer Games.

A section of London Road, a major arterial road in Alexandra, was a hive of activity on May 6, as Nabil Batenga from 3D Branding and his team brought images to life on a mural depicting some of South Africa’s famous athletes.

The mural in Alexandra is one of 23 painted in several towns across South Africa. It is part of a drive to get South Africans behind national teams, both able-bodied and paralympic teams headed for the summer games in Paris starting on July 26.

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The murals urging South Africans to get behind the team can be found in Gauteng: Alexandra, Protea, Dobsonville, Pimville, Jabulani in Soweto; Limpopo in Bela-Bela and Seshego; North-West at Tlhabane and Mafikeng; KZN at Umlazi and Kwa-Mashu; Eastern Cape at Mdantsane and Motherwell; Western Cape at Khayelitsha, Gugulethu and Nyanga; Northern Cape at Galeshewe and Free State at Mangaung.

This initiative is part of the Bidvest Operation Excellence programme whose aim is to support athletes affiliated with the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) to ensure that they have sufficient resources to train and prepare for major local and global championships.

Nabil Batengas mural painting features famous South African athletes.
Nabil Batengas mural painting features famous South African athletes.

Some athletes depicted in the murals are the 400m world record holders. Those are Wade van Niekerk, and paralympian Ntando Mahlangu.

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Batenga said he and his team are proud to be part of bringing these images to communities such as Alexandra, Soweto, Thembisa, Emalahleni and many more.

“We hope this will help create awareness about the summer games in communities such as Gomora as Alexandra is affectionately called. We trust it will bring excitement about the games and get people to rally around Team South Africa.

“We are proud of our involvement with Team South Africa under the auspices of Sascoc. We believe that supporting our great athletes will help foster a spirit of togetherness as a country and support the team at the games. We believe it will also underline the team’s motto, ‘One Team One Nation’.

Batenga said he has been painting murals for 25 years and has 16 employees. “Whenever I work in an area, I hire a few residents to paint the walls and help with odd jobs, which do not require training,” adding that his company is subcontracted to Owakhe Media.

He said he would love to see more young people get involved in the industry as it is rewarding if you are hard-working, passionate and committed.
Batenga’s love for painting murals has seen him do work in Australia, Tanzania and Dubai.

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