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.
Friday, November 16, will mark exactly nine months since President Ramaphosa delivered his maiden speech in Parliament. Amid non-stop news, it is perhaps good to take a quiet moment and to evaluate how the “new dawn” looks after nine months (and it was perhaps just as exhausting as a difficult pregnancy!).
On 16 February, the new President made a number of commitments to the representatives of South Africa's people (and thereby to all of us). Some of these were commitments that were already in the works under former Cabinet members, and others were clearly his own. In many cases, he placed his own stamp on these commitments.
The FW de Klerk Foundation welcomes the decision by Minister of Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba, to resign with immediate effect (as we have argued on 2 November). Amid mounting charges of having lied under oath, violating the Constitution and being found to be in contravention of the Executive Members’ Ethics Act by the Public Protector, Minister Gigaba leaves Cabinet under a very dark cloud.
The FW de Klerk Foundation is delighted to announce that former President FW de Klerk was discharged from Panorama Mediclinic in Cape Town this afternoon, following a successful procedure on Saturday to treat pneumothorax.
Mr and Mrs De Klerk, as well as the Foundation, would like to express their sincere thanks for all the good wishes and messages of support they have received over the past few days.
FW de Klerk was hospitalised yesterday at the Panorama Hospital with a condition known as pneumothorax - which is an abnormal collection of air in the pleural space between the lung and the chest wall. He underwent a successful procedure this morning and it is expected that he will be discharged from hospital some time next week.
The FW de Klerk Foundation will today, Friday 26 October 2018, appear before the Constitutional Review Committee to make a presentation on its earlier submission on the possible amendment to section 25 of the Constitution. The Foundation regards this question as being of central importance to the future of South Africa - not only for successful land reform, but also for the future of property rights, the future of the economy, and the future of race relations in South Africa.
Together with numerous respected jurists, including the late Arthur Chaskalson CJ, as well as the High Level Panel appointed by Parliament and led by former President Kgalema Motlanthe, the Foundation believes that it is not necessary to change section 25 of the Constitution to achieve land reform and extend property rights to all South Africans.
The FW de Klerk Foundation welcomes, with cautious optimism, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s appointment of a Commission of Inquiry into alleged impropriety at the Public Investment Corporation (PIC). The appointment of the Commission is an important affirmation of the President’s powers, as granted by the Constitution. The wide-ranging terms of reference include the investigation into various allegations of improprieties linked to PIC investments. It also extends to the conduct of past and present office-bearers and staff, including the functioning of its Board. Of concern though, is the limited temporal scope of the work of the Commission - from 1 January 2015 to 31 August 2018, which excludes from scrutiny, any questionable deals conducted in that period.
It is a great pleasure for me to address you today on the topic of South Africa’s transition to democracy. This is now my ninth visit to Taiwan and with each visit I have admired the manner in which your country has progressively consolidated and deepened your own democratic system.
Our progress in South Africa was different. In our country the challenge was not so much a transition to democracy but an extension of democracy to all our people.
The country we today call South Africa was created by the British Empire only 108 years ago. As was the case with many other African countries, the British drew borders on the map of the continent that arbitrarily included a great variety of peoples with different languages, cultures and levels of economic development.
I have learned with great sadness of the death of Pik Botha.
He was one of the leading personalities in South African politics from 1970 until his retirement from active politics in 1996. He served with great distinction as South Africa’s Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1977 until 1994 - and was one of the world’s longest-serving foreign ministers. During this period, he resolutely defended South Africa against growing international isolation.