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.
In his remarks to the ANC’s National General Council on 9 October 2015 President Zuma provided some crucial insights into how he views his Alliance partners and how he foresees their future relationship after the goals of the National Democratic Revolution (NDR) have been achieved. (President Zuma’s comments in isiZulu are indicated by italics.)
President Zuma spelled out the ANC’s role as follows:
“The ANC, the leader of the Alliance, is a multiclass national liberation movement advancing the NDR, the primary objective of which is the establishment of the National Democratic Society, which is united, non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous. That is the objective of the ANC.”
President Zuma is understandably unhappy with the treatment he receives from the media - and particularly from the print media. He is regularly depicted with a shower emerging from his head. Artists paint him with his genitals exposed. He is castigated for corruption and the media continue to hound him over the expenditure of R246 million on his retirement home.
So, it is not surprising that when he went off text during his recent address to mark Media Freedom Day, the President expressed some emotion.
In his address on 15 October 2015 to the Higher Education Transformation Summit in Durban, Deputy President Ramaphosa made the following statement:
“Though we have made a decisive shift from the fragmented, inefficient and inequitable higher education system of the apartheid era, we still feel its effects. Had the apartheid rulers not been so thorough, so methodical, so malevolent in the denial of education to the black majority, then South Africa would today be on a completely different developmental trajectory. We would be a more equitable nation, a more prosperous nation. We would have an advanced, diversified, more inclusive economy.”
Almost all South Africans agree that our country is in a crisis. Most government departments are paralysed by incompetence, corruption and a culture of entitlement.
The state of the economy, education, health services, infrastructure and safety are at a low point. The evil triplets of poverty, unemployment and inequality are thriving.
Moreover, a well thought-out plan to “Africanise” society in the name of transformation is being applied relentlessly.
It is a great honour for me to address you on the role of leadership in a rapidly changing world.
It is also most appropriate that this lecture series should be dedicated to President Clinton - because - in his approach to Northern Ireland during his presidency - he showed exactly the kind of leadership that you wish to promote.
Former President FW de Klerk and the staff of the FW de Klerk Foundation and its Centre for Constitutional Rights (CFCR) would like to extend their congratulations and best wishes to Archbishop Desmond Tutu as he celebrates his 84th birthday.
The ANC must be congratulated for the care with which it prepares its members for important policy discussions of the kind that will soon be taking place at its 2015 National General Council. The NGC is the most important ANC meeting between National Conferences. It gives the organisation an opportunity to consider progress made with the implementation of policy since the preceding National Conference and to develop proposals for new policies at the next National Conference - which will take place at the end of 2017.
Twenty-one years after the establishment of our new constitutional democracy minorities have very little to celebrate on Heritage Day. The vision of a vibrant multi-cultural society with a mosaic of cultures and languages coexisting harmoniously in mutual toleration and respect has not been realised.
The Constitution makes full provision for such a society. It recognises our 11 national languages and accords them parity of esteem. It enjoins the state to develop our indigenous languages and requires government to be conducted in at least two languages at national and provincial level. It recognises the right of everyone to practise their cultures and use their languages. It accepts the right of everyone to education in the language or languages of their choice at public educational institutions.