FW de Klerk Foundation ignores EFF call for return of Nobel prize
The EFF has called on former apartheid president FW de Klerk to be stripped of his Nobel Peace Prize but the FW de Klerk Foundation isn't paying attention, telling TimesLIVE it "doesn't respond to the EFF".
On the 30th anniversary of De Klerk's historic 1990 speech, when it was announced political parties would be unbanned, EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said the De Klerk government should not be credited for the unbanning of liberation movements and the release of former president Nelson Mandela because it was “responsible for too many massacres”.
“Seeing that God has given him a long life, De Klerk can still repent and admit to his role in the crimes against humanity committed by his regime, under his watch, including the gruesome activities of Vlakplaas.
“We call on De Klerk to return the Nobel Peace Prize because there is blood on his hands. He is not a peacemaker. No one should ever be awarded for asking victims of apartheid to make peace with apartheid. Apartheid is a crime against humanity and its leaders are no peacemakers,” said Ndlozi.
Nldozi said the EFF rejects the notion that De Klerk unbanned political parties and released prisoners willingly.
“It is not him nor his government, but the selfless struggle by the masses, the youth in particular.
“The apartheid regime was in denial, imposing states of emergency that lasted most of the 1980s. However, the mass power of the people collapsed apartheid. Even the governments of the world that imposed sanctions on apartheid did so due to the grassroots and mass-based international solidarity movement.
“There is, therefore, no grounds to imagine that De Klerk unbanned liberation political parties. This also means he does not deserve the Nobel Prize, as his contribution to a peaceful transition in SA is questionable.”
The foundation's response was simple.
“We don’t react to EFF statements," said spokesperson Dave Steward.
The foundation's website says it supports and promotes the constitution, the bill of rights and the rule of law and promotes unity in diversity by working for cordial inter-community relations and national unity.
It's not the first time EFF has said De Klerk was not deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize.
In 2015, Ndlozi said De Klerk’s view on the Oxford University’s Rhodes Must Fall movement showed he did not deserve the award he shares with Mandela.
In a controversial letter in the UK Times newspaper, De Klerk called the student movement against colonialist Cecil John Rhodes “folly”.
“SA’s white Afrikaner population had many reasons to dislike Rhodes, but never thought of removing his name from our history.
“We do not commemorate historic figures for their ability to measure up to current conceptions of political correctness, but because of their actual impact on history.”
At that time Ndlozi said: “De Klerk is not apologetic of apartheid. We call on that prize to be withdrawn and then reissued to Nelson Mandela, who should have never received it alongside De Klerk in the first place.”