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The FW de Klerk Foundation writes regular articles on topical issues, supports language and cultural rights and participates in the national debate on racial and cultural issues. The Foundation also promotes communication by holding conferences and workshops.

ARTICLE: BLADE - AS SHARP AS EVER, AND JUST AS DANGEROUS

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In a recent memorial lecture to Oliver Tambo, the now former Minister of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande, lifted the veil on how the SACP sees and understands the source of the current state capture. The news headlines claim that at its core, his speech speaks of a country in the early phase of a securocracy. However, that is not at the heart of his speech. It is Nzimande's first speech after being dismissed by Zuma, and he is doing his analysis of what went wrong, holding Tambo up as an example. This analysis brings some interesting, and some troubling, issues to the fore.

It is important to remember that the SACP leadership was instrumental in Polokwane in 2007 in toppling Mbeki and voting Zuma in. Zuma rewarded them for this with a disproportionate number of Cabinet posts. This allowed them to further the SACP and ANC's National Democratic Revolution (NDR), among others by smuggling socialist elements into policy (such as the draft legislation on property rights).

ARTICLE: FARM ATTACKS, FARM MURDERS AND THE PEOPLE’S PROTESTS*

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The recent “Black Monday” protests have again highlighted how emotional the issues of farm attacks and farm murders are. There was both support for and criticism against the protests, the latter fuelled by some protesters making a political statement by waving the old South African flag.

Some historical background may be instructive. The Mandela government did a great deal to classify the phenomenon of farm attacks as a special category of crime, and to confront it. Among other initiatives, there was a national conference on the matter, a Rural Protection Plan, and establishing committees to implement the Plan. This was done in the early 2000s, in cooperation with the established commando system, which most farmers were part of.

ARTICLE: ANC LEADERSHIP BATTLE: TO DEAL OR NOT TO DEAL?

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While the outgoing ANC president is heading in his own direction, outside the control of the ANC, the government, and Parliament, the battle for a new ANC president is continuing. There are still three main scenarios for a winner (in alphabetical order): Dlamini-Zuma, Mkhize and Ramaphosa.

According to the numbers of delegates from the various provinces that have now been determined, it is clear that there has been strong growth in Mpumalanga (736 delegates), and only KwaZulu-Natal has more (870).  The Eastern Cape and Limpopo come in at three and four (648 and 643 respectively). North West and Gauteng are in the middle group (538 and 508), with the Free State (409), Northern Cape (197) and Western Cape (182) at the lower end. The branches make up 90% of the 5 300 delegates, with the rest coming from the Leagues and the Provincial Executive Committees (PECs).

SPEECH: EDUCATION – THE CRITICAL SUCCESS FACTOR FOR HUMANITY

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It is a great pleasure for me to be able to address you this evening during this - my first - visit to Panama.

Panama City is one of the great crossroads of the world - between the two largest oceans - the Atlantic and Pacific, and between the two continents of the new world, North and South America.

It is also quite a new and welcome experience for me to be able to speak on the crucially important question of education - as a critical success factor for humanity.

ARTICLE: LACK OF MAINTENANCE IS SLOWLY KILLING US

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In the midst of the ongoing sensational revelations about state capture and corruption, and the developing struggle for the leadership of the ANC, other important news often goes almost unnoticed. An example of this is the report card on infrastructure that the South African Institution for Civil Engineers (SAICE) recently published, with the help of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

They pinpoint a festering sore that is not only costing the country huge amounts of money, but which also could also kill us (literally and figuratively). SAICE has done intensive research into all kinds of infrastructure: water, sanitation, solid waste, roads, airports, railways, electricity, health and education. Based on their findings, they graded these categories (and subcategories). The ratings range from “world class” (A) to “unfit for purpose” (E). Between these are “fit for the future” (B), “satisfactory for now” (C) and “at risk of failure” (D). Their overall rating of South Africa's infrastructure is D+, down from a C- in 2011, just after the Soccer World Cup's infrastructure upgrades. This means that SA's infrastructure, according to the civil engineers (including those that work for the state), is “at risk of failure”.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ARCHBISHOP TUTU

Tutu and FWDK

The FW de Klerk Foundation team would like to convey their warmest birthday wishes and congratulations to Archbishop Emeritus, Desmond Tutu, who is celebrating his 86th Birthday on Saturday, 7 October 2017.

The Foundation would like to wish the Arch the very best of health for the year ahead, and give recognition to his lifelong efforts towards fostering a peaceful, non-racial, democratic South Africa. The Foundation applauds the Arch for speaking out for the constitutional values and rights upon which our democracy is built.

Happy Birthday Arch!

SPEECH: CONSTITUTIONS, DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS - THE RIGHT SIDE OF HISTORY

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It is a great pleasure for me to visit Quinnipiac University.

I first met Professor David Ives several years ago at one of the annual Summits of Nobel Peace Prize Laureates.  Over the years we became firm friends.  Each time I met David he told me about Quinnipiac - and each time I listened to him I told him how much I would like to visit his university.

And now at last I am here.

I want to share with you tonight not only the story about how my country, South Africa, has become a much better place during the past 27 years - but also about how developments in my country have been rooted in a global process that has resulted in a world that, since the end of the Second World War, has also become an immeasurably better for billions of people.

ARTICLE: BUSINESS, RADICAL ECONOMIC TRANSFORMATION AND THE ANC - THE HOUR IS LATE

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Johann Rupert, Executive Chairman of Remgro and CEO of Richemont, said recently in London at a shareholders meeting that “radical economic transformation" was just a codeword for theft.

The ANC responded within hours with a blistering statement and a torrent of comments, straight from the socialist-Marxist economic textbook. They warned Rupert to remain silent because he is a “beneficiary of apartheid's exclusionary policies” with “ill-begotten privilege”. The insinuation is that he opposes economic empowerment and change, and that he does not act in the interests of a democratic system.

Even though no comments have been forthcoming from other South African business leaders, it can be assumed that a substantial number of them agree with him on this point and say exactly the same in private conversations and in board meetings.

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