The Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, is a 2016 eThekwini Living Legend.

One of 13 awardees, she received the award at a glittering gala dinner function, held at the Chief Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre (ICC) in Durban over the weekend.

They were nominated in various fields, including academia, human rights, sports and arts and culture. The other 2016 Living Legends are DrSazi Dlamini, Tu Nokwe, Professor Kate Wells, Cedric Nunn,Obed "3" Gumede, Dawn "Maduma" Leppan, Mac Maharaj, Lt Gen Vejay Ramlaka,Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, Alzina Zondi, the KwaZulu-Natal Society for the Blindand Gift of the Givers.

According to the organisers, the 9th Annual Living Legends Awards provided a platform to reflect on the rich legacies that societal leaders from various sectors have created. The 2016 awardees were selected through a public nomination process, where citizens submitted the nominees' names and biographies, in both English and Zulu, to the eThekwini Municipality. A further selection process was undertaken by the Municipality’s researchers to identify the people who were selected to be this year's Living Legend Awardees.

The eThekwini Mayor, Councillor Zandile Gumede, said that having evolved into a fully-fledged social upliftment programme, from what was previously a one-day annual event, the eThekwini Living Legends Awards now forms part of the eThekwini Legacy Project.

"It is important for us to honour our living legends for their distinct achievements and contribution to the people of eThekwini and country. Their achievements serve as an inspiration to the younger generations. The municipality is in the process of building a multi-million rand central library that will house the Living Legends Museum. We want to ensure that this project becomes a lasting legacy so that generations to come can read about these extraordinary men and women of our City," said the Mayor.

Minister Pandor said she was deeply humbled by the award. "I think it is wonderful that people from the city in which I was born nominated me for an award of this nature."

She said the award had encouraged her to redouble her efforts in working for the people of South Africa.

The eThekwini Living Legends Awards honours past and present eThekwini citizens who have diligently dedicated their time and skills to uplift communities and contributed immensely to developing society at large.

It aims to salute the inspirational and continuous contribution that these individuals have made to local communities and South Africa as a whole.