Former President FW de Klerk has retracted and apologised for his statement on the criminality of the apartheid system. In an interview on SABC News, De Klerk said that he does not fully agree with the United Nation’s position that apartheid was a crime against humanity.
Click below to watch the clip in which FW de Klerk says that apartheid was not a crime against humanity:
WATCH | Prior to their walkout at #SONA2020 the EFF made reference to an SABC News interview with the last apartheid president, FW De Klerk denying that apartheid was a crime against humanity. FULL INTERVIEW > https://t.co/Kwhd7YG60N pic.twitter.com/VZBssG3ve4
— SABC News Online (@SABCNewsOnline) February 13, 2020
The De Klerk Foundation later backed his comments in a statement. The statement was released on Friday after the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) demanded that he leave Parliament where he was attending the State of the Nation Address by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
In the video below, EFF leader Julius Malema calls FW de Klerk a murderer and asks for him to leave the house:
The statement elicited huge criticism from political parties with a march being planned to the offices of the FW de Klerk Foundation in Cape Town on Wednesday.
His Foundation has since apologised to the country for the confusion caused by the statement.
“I agree with the Desmond and Leah Tutu Foundation that this is not the time to quibble about the degrees of unacceptability of apartheid. It was totally unacceptable. The FW de Klerk Foundation has accordingly decided to withdraw its statement of 14 February unconditionally and apologises for the confusion, anger and hurt that it has caused,” the statement outlines.
The Foundation says it remains committed to a democratic South Africa.
“ The FW de Klerk Foundation remains deeply committed to national reconciliation and to the achievement of the foundational values on which the Foundation is based – including human dignity, the achievement of equality, the advancement of human rights and freedoms; non-racialism and non-sexism, the supremacy of the Constitution and the Rule of Law and a genuine multi-party system of democratic governance.”
Below is the FW de Klerk Foundation’s full statement :
However, Ahmed Kathrada Foundation’s Neeshan Balton says more action needs to be taken against the Foundation.
“But more importantly the De Klerk Foundation is part of a collective of Foundations called the National Foundation Dialogue Initiative which involves a whole range of struggle stalwart foundations and today I think it’s important for those Foundations to relook at the membership of the De Klerk Foundation as part of that collective.”
Meanwhile, the EFF has said that it will write to the Nobel Peace Committee requesting it to withdraw the Nobel Prize which was awarded to De Klerk in 1993.
In the video below EFF’s Dali Mpofu provides reasons why De Klerk’s Nobel Peace Prize should be revoked: