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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.

Coronavirus

Globally and in South Africa the pandemic crisis of 2020 continues to test the solidity of the foundations of many aspects of 21st Century society. This is particularly evident in the economy, communications and culture, but it also raises many legal questions, especially concerning the extent of the powers of the state and the government in exceptional circumstances.

The South African government received praise, for instance from the World Health Organization, for the manner in which it had responded to the crisis, and it would be churlish to deny that South Africans generally have much to be grateful for, given the relatively positive results that may be ascribed to some of the drastic measures taken by the government to curb the spread of the virus.

200131 FWDK

It is once again a great pleasure for me to address the Cape Town Press Club.

I shall spend a little more time today on the past than on the future ‐ because, at the age of 84, I have much more past than future ‐ and also because the past has become an increasingly contentious issue, not only for the present ‐ but also for the future.

Heritage Day

This Heritage Day we are slowly emerging from the most immediate aftermath of Covid-19 and its devastating effect on our country, economy and people.

On this day -and in a country belonging to all its’ people - South Africans are encouraged to celebrate their culture, the diversity of their beliefs and traditions.

One of the most important aspects recognised in the Constitution of South Africa, is the importance of our collective heritage and the rich cultural, linguistic and historical landscape painting the canvas of our people’s diversity. The South African Constitution unambiguously speaks to this in its’ preamble: South Africa belongs to all who live in it - united in our diversity - in the wider context of a nation and country recognising the injustices of our past; honouring those who suffered for justice and freedom in our land as well as respecting those who have worked to build and develop our country.

Heritage Day

In his dystopian novel “1984” George Orwell introduced us to the concept of “doublethink” - which he described as -

“…the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them... To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies - all this is indispensably necessary.”

We saw examples of doublethink in President Ramaphosa’s statement on Heritage Day last week.

Heritage Day

The long-simmering crisis of farm murders has come to a head following the murder on 1 October of a 21-year-old farm manager Brendin Horner at a farm outside Paul Roux in the Free State.

Horner’s body was found tied to a pole and the 21-year-old had injuries to the face and neck.

Only two days later police arrested two suspects, Sekola Piet Matlaletsa and Sekwetje Isaiah Mahlamba, in a township near Paul Roux. Blood-stained clothes and shoes were found in their possession.

Lee Teng hui

PROPOSED ONLINE CENSORSHIP OF SOUTH AFRICA: DRAFT FILMS AND PUBLICATIONS AMENDMENT REGULATIONS

The South African Film and Publication Board (SAFPB) recently published the Draft Films and Publications Amendment Regulations for public comment. The Regulations - which would be promulgated under the Films and Publications Amendment Act 11 of 2019 (the FPAA) - will be administered by the Board - and apply to the sale, hiring and streaming of content on the internet and various other digital platforms in South Africa.

Adv J du Preez

The Board of Trustees of the FW de Klerk Foundation is pleased to announce the appointment of Adv Jacques du Preez as the Foundation’s new Chief Executive Officer with effect from 1 September 2020. Adv Du Preez succeeds Dr Dayne Morkel - who left the Foundation in March to take up career opportunities in the United States.

Adv Du Preez (39) was educated at Centurion High School and holds an LLB degree from the University of Pretoria and a Master’s Degree (LLM) in Public Law from the University of Stellenbosch. He practised as an advocate and member of the Cape Bar from June 2007 until May 2011 - when he joined the Foundation’s Centre for Constitutional Rights as Operational Officer. During the following three years he made a valuable contribution to the CFCR’s activities - particularly in the areas of human rights monitoring, reporting and advocacy and in preparing submissions to Parliament and human rights bodies on draft legislation and human rights violations.

race

The FW de Klerk Foundation condemns the racist attack and intimidation of innocent bystanders by EFF members at N1 City Shopping Centre on 9 September 2020.

In an incident yesterday, which was captured on video by bystanders and subsequently substantiated by media reports, protesting members of the EFF made racist statements and jostled white bystanders after they were evicted by security personnel from a shopping centre near Cape Town. Upon their exit from the shopping centre the EFF members shouted at bystanders “F**k you white people”. This was followed by numerous further racial outbursts - that included shouting at the bystanders that they were “white racists” and that they must “go back to Europe, you are here to steal our land”.

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