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City to mark Nelson Mandela's 90th birthday

Nelson Mandela will be 90 on 18 July 2008 Well-wishers in Edinburgh are to get the chance to record a personal message to Nelson Mandela for his 90th birthday.

Edinburgh City Council has commissioned a special birthday book to be kept in the City Chambers over the next month.

It will then be sent to the former South African President.

Lord Provost George Grubb said: "Nelson Mandela is a force for good in our world and his many achievements have had a huge impact across the globe."

He added: "Mandela's inspiration extends to Edinburgh and I am sure that many citizens of our city will take the opportunity to visit the City Chambers to record their sentiments."

Unique opportunity

Jenny Dawe, Edinburgh City Council leader, said: "Nelson Mandela has a long association with Edinburgh and his passion for freedom and equality is an inspiration to us all.

"This book will be sent directly to the great man for him to read so this is a unique opportunity for the people of Edinburgh to send their personal message."

On Mr Mandela's 90th birthday, 18 July, the South African flag will be flown above Edinburgh's City Chambers and a floral display in Princes Street Gardens designed around the colours and themes of the flag is planned.

Nelson Mandela's birthday book will be in City Chambers reception for members of the public to sign weekdays from 3 July to Friday, 1 August between 0900 and 1600.

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