Ricardo Mackenzie MPP
DA Western Cape Spokesperson for Cultural Affairs and Sport:
With great pride, the DA congratulates Kenneth Terence Solomon from Mitchell’s Plain who will be awarded the title of International Grandmaster. Other than world champion, the International Grandmaster title is the highest official title bestowed for over the board play in the sport of Chess.
Kenny has played more than 100 times in international competitions as he has represented South Africa at every Chess Olympiad since 1998. He has also won the South African Championship on four occasions.
We are heartened that one of the world’s strongest chess players was born and bred in the Western Cape, in the City of Cape Town, in Lentegeur, Mitchell’s Plain. We honour Kenny Solomon as a true role model and an inspiration to our youth in the province. Undoubtedly, Kenny is a real life example of rising above the challenges with which one is faced.
The DA welcomes the honour bestowed upon Grandmaster Kenny as sport contributes to social cohesion in the province. It is important to encourage the youth and communities to engage in positive sporting activities. This engagement has proven to be a powerful mechanism in combatting social ills within our communities and affords youth opportunities to excel, despite the many challenges they face on a daily basis. This, in turn sparks a sense of achievement and optimizes social behaviour and in effect promotes social cohesion, which is indeed lacking in some parts of our country.
I was privileged to have invited Grandmaster Kenny Solomon to the official opening of the Western Cape Provincial Parliament on Friday, 20 February 2015. I have also been afforded the opportunity of accompanying him as he visits several places across Cape Town, including his hometown of Mitchell’s Plain. He is certainly a role model for the youth of our generation and I hope he will inspire them as much as he has me.