In what may be a high-profile illustration of worsening race relations in South Africa, the former president of the country F.W. De Klerk, has launched a scathing attack on the policies and behavior of current holder of that seat, Jacob Zuma, according to South African media reports.
De Klerk, the last white leader of South Africa who negotiated Nelson Mandela to end of Apartheid, has alleged that the ruling African National Congress (ANC) is seeking to establish and enforce black domination over racial minorities by chipping away at the constitution.
He also claimed that the ANC regime is replete with corruption, cronyism and practices divisive racial politics.”
I believe that we are approaching a pivotal point in our history where all South Africans of goodwill, regardless of their race, circumstances or political affiliation will have to rally around the constitutional rights, values and vision upon which our new non-racial democracy has been established, De Klerk told the South African press.
De Klerk has also focused on Zuma’s friendship with Julius Malema, a top youth official of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party who has reportedly made racialist statements against whites.
It is unacceptable to sing songs that ask that somebody gets shot, De Klerk said, according to the Beeld newspaper, referring to Malema singing a song entitled “Shoot the Boer” in a public forum.
The historical context is irrelevant. It will be equally unacceptable if Afrikaners started singing songs from the Anglo Boer war that ask that English people be shot or for Americans to sing World War II songs about killing Japanese people.
De Klerk also rebuked Malema for stating that white people in South Africa are “criminals” for having stolen the land from the native black Africans.
Malema, who has defended the song as a “legitimate struggle anthem, is facing hate speech charges in the country’s Equality Court.
Zuma himself did not castigate Malema for such remarks, although other ANC officials have said Malema’s opinion did not reflect the party’s position.
It is unacceptable for Malema to call white people criminals,” De Klerk declared.
It is even more unacceptable for Zuma to sit smilingly on the same stage while Malema, an important ANC official, makes such racist comments. Malema's conduct is irreconcilable with the Constitution, which Zuma promised in an oath to protect.
Malema’s accusations of land theft raises fear among white South African famers that what happened in Zimbabwe years ago could happen here – the large-scale forcible seizure of farm property from whites.
De Klerk even went so far as to claim that the ANC is seeking massive and forced redistribution of property and wealth from the white minority to the black majority. Whites, Coloureds and Asians would be corralled into demographic pens in all aspects of their economic and professional lives according to the percentage of the population they represent.”
He added: The prospects of South African citizens would once again be determined by the colour of their skins - and not by their skills, their contribution.
Zizi Kodwa, a spokesman for Zuma, gently criticized De Klerk.
Mr Zuma takes former president de Klerk very seriously but for him to just respond to headlines without checking the facts is very unfortunate, he said.