News / South Africa

Gosebo Mathope
3 minute read
8 Nov 2017
4:50 pm

AfriForum: Afrikaners should be allowed to display old flag privately

Gosebo Mathope

The Mandela Foundation CEO told the AfriForum CEO that stats showed young black, poor South Africans in townships were the most vulnerable to murder.

AfriForum deputy chief executive Ernst Roets with Gawie Stols, whose brother Kyle was murdered on Sunday at a farm in Jagersfontein, in Free State province. PHOTO: ANA

The CEO of AfriForum Kalie Kriel this morning defended Afrikaner people’s right to display the old apartheid flag privately, and said it was okay to do so, as it would not offend anyone.

Kriel also dismissed Nelson Mandela Foundation CEO Sello Hatang’s assertion that the apartheid was declared a crime against humanity by the United Nations, arguing communism was also a crime against humanity.

“It is also crime against humanity. Communism is a crime against humanity because 100 million people were killed, yet it is still practised today,” Kriel said during a debate between himself and Hatang on SABC this morning.

Hatang pressed Kriel and urged him to differentiate between personal opinion and historical facts.

“The United Nations declared apartheid a crime against humanity. There was a research that said 59% of white people agreed that apartheid was a crime against humanity. People should not publicly display the flag.”

“How come young white Afrikaners are openly racist? They learn this at home. I am saying to Kalie, let’s make sure that those things that we find offensive publicly, we should find them offensive privately. Why should you be offensive privately? Be offensive privately then if you are so proud,” Hatang retorted.

READ MORE: #BlackMonday protest divides South Africans

“We should not have double standards … the EFF displayed the Hezbolla flag during their march. We should not focus on the small group. We should have a broader discussion on inappropriate discussion,” Kriel said before being asked by the show’s moderator, Palesa Chuba, to be specific on the nature of the discussions he was suggesting.

Kriel also said all the pictures of Afrikaners burning the new South African flag during the Black Monday protest and days afterwards on social media were meant to distract from the march organised to highlight farm murders.

“Unfortunately, you see people distributing a flag being burnt even thought this happened in 2012 in Delmas. The other photograph was burnt in 2013 in London. You are getting people who are abusing the flag issue to want to discredit. We saying people should not display the flag to the detriment of or hurt people’s feelings.

High commissioner of India in South Africa Ms. Ruchi Ghanashyam poses for pictures with the Nelson Mandela Foundation's CEO Sello Hatang during a R 2 million cheque handover by the commissioner to the foundation on behalf of the Indian government held in Johannesburg, 13 December 2016. Picture: Refilwe Modise

High commissioner of India in South Africa Ms. Ruchi Ghanashyam poses for pictures with the Nelson Mandela Foundation’s CEO Sello Hatang  Johannesburg, 13 December 2016. Picture: Refilwe Modise

“People’s feelings were hurt when the president said all the problems started when Jan van Riebeck arrived in South Africa, Julius Malema also repeated the same statement. We should take all offensive statements and not be offensive.

Asked if perhaps AfriForum lost an opportunity to unite the country as crime is a societal problem, he said “there was no division created, the news distributed were fake news”. He insisted that the march united people.

Hatang concluded until the day all South African acknowledge murder is a problem and that “many young South Africans die everyday”, marches like the Black Monday would always divide the country.

“It was an opportunity to say, everyone dies. We missed an opportunity to say the most vulnerable people to crime and murder are poor people in the townships. [Not] display arrogance that says you are nothing without us, you won’t get food without us. We can’t make our problems sectoral,” Hatang said.


You can follow the author @Gosebo_Mathope.

For more news your way, follow The Citizen on Facebook and Twitter.