Use of old apartheid flag condemned

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa has condemned the display of the old apartheid flag during the Black Monday protests, which took place in various parts of the country yesterday. 

“During the Black Monday protest, the democratic values enshrined in the Constitution were severely undermined by the shameful brandishing of a symbol of the biggest crime against humanity – apartheid,” Minister Mthethwa said. 

He said while the department is unreservedly sympathetic to the plight of farming communities, they are deeply disturbed by some of the symbolism that characterised the protest action. 

“It is important to note that the event of burning the new flag and flying of the old flag did not advance the cause for social cohesion and nation building, and we condemn this action with the strongest contempt it deserves,” the Minister said. 

The Minister said the department has a mandate to lead South African society in bridging persistent socio-historical divisions, mainly entrenched along racial, cultural and ethnic identities. 

He said there are various platforms, some in the form of community conversations, that are being used across the country to encourage robust conversations to bridge existing divisions, especially along the racial lines. 

“We remain committed to working with all communities in ensuring that we live up to the vision of our Constitution and the National Development Plan and by extension, we hereby issue a call to all communities to join us in forging this common future together, for ourselves and for posterity,” Minister Mthethwa said. 

The Minister said the department sympathises with the many families that have lost their loved ones as a result of farm attacks. He called on the law enforcement agencies to act decisively without fear or favour. 

“In South Africa, the rule of law is the foundation on which our constitutional democracy finds its strength. Killings and attacks of any kind on South African citizens are unacceptable and conflicting to the kind of society that we seek to build – a truly non-racial, non-sexist, and democratic society,” Minister Mthethwa said. –

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