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An appraisal of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa: 1652 to 2018. Part 6: Performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes for the period 1795 to 1872 (Cape Colony)

Gabriel P Louw

iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6190-8093

Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa

Corresponding Author:

Prof. Dr. GP Louw; MA (UNISA), PhD (PU for CHE), DPhil (PU for CHE), PhD (NWU)

Email: profgplouw@gmail.com

Keywords: appraisal, black, executive, history, leaders, performance, political, profile, regime, white.

Ensovoort, volume 40 (2019), number 4: 1

1. Background

1.1 Introduction

At the end of 1794, France invaded Holland and in January 1795, they captured Amsterdam. As a result, the monarch, the Prince of Orange, fled to England. In Holland the Patriot Party came to an agreement with the French Republic in May 1795 and took over power to create the Batavian Republic, for all intents and purposes a vassal state of the French. The Prince of Orange, living in exile in England, requested the British government to protect the Cape Colony until he could recover the throne. He wanted to prevent the strategic halfway house falling into the hands of the French. For the British government, this was an excellent opportunity to safeguard their immediate interests in India and they decided to send a fleet of nine vessels. This fleet was under the command of Admiral Sir GK Elphinstone. He was accompanied by a military force sixteen hundred strong under the command of General Sir JH Craig. The fleet reached False Bay in June 1795, and after minimal resistance, the VOC’s force surrendered. Commissioner-General AJ Sluysken, the acting Governor of the Cape, signed the Treaty of Rustenburg on 6 September 1795, handing over the Cape Colony to the British to rule temporarily on behalf of the Prince of Orange. The VOC’s soldiers became prisoners of war, while Sluysken returned to the Netherlands. General Craig acted as governor until May 1797 when he was relieved by the Earl George Macartney.1,2

The total population within the borders of the Cape Colony was as follows at that stage1:37:

  •     White free burghers numbering 16 000, with more or less 11 000 living in the rural areas and 5 000 living in Cape Town.
  •     About 1 500 White officials and 1 200 troops.
  •     Non-White slaves numbering 17 000.
  •     A KhoiKhoi population of 4 000.

Regarding the European population at the Cape in 1797, the proportion was 50% Dutch, 27% German, 17% French, and other elements representing 6%, mostly Scandinavian.1

1.2 The presence of the civilized world in the form of the British Empire as temporary rulers of the Cape, 1795 to 1803

We already saw in Part 5 of the series that the Cape’s inhabitants were exposed to different commanders and governors of the VOC over the period 1652. In general they brought very little that was positive, but they all had one common feature: they were all Dutch and of the same culture and political orientation as most of the White inhabitants living at the Cape. The inhabitants could address their appeals about wrongdoings by the VOC government and the commander and governors, to organizations that were Dutch, although these appeals mostly went unanswered. As a direct result of the VOC’s mismanagement on many terrains, a culture of lawfulness had developed in the Cape Colony, and this had become entrenched among the White frontiersmen. This made them resistant to stricter governance and order and to the change to a more humane attitudes to the non-Whites. The arrival of the British as temporary rulers meant the end of the VOC. The British had often been at war with the Dutch before this and were directly responsible for the downfall of the VOC’s rule at the Cape with their shipping trade embargos.1-5

The free burghers certainly did not see the British as trustworthy comrades and true partners when they came to the Cape in 1795, especially not the unruly White frontiersmen. Most of all, they did not foresee the collapse of the VOC and its partnership with the Netherlands, opening the door for one of their greatest enemies to become their ruler without a shot being fired. The unpreparedness of the free burghers is reflected in the arrogance of the inhabitants of Graaff-Reinet and Swellendam when they declared themselves “independent” from the Cape, seemingly as part of the Batavian Republic.1-3

On the other hand, the British were interested in expanding their Empire and they had little respect and consideration for different from what they considered their “civilized” culture. Their domination of the globe was equally entrenched in their thinking, and they forced many groups around the world to march to a British tune. They came with an aggressive intent to shape and control the indigenous cultures and people under their control. Those who adopted the British culture were always ultimately still the underdogs. The Europeans of the 1800s, like the British at the Cape, were inclined to distinguish themselves from “other” human beings by taking and consuming a growing share of the world’s goods. They skillfully manipulated the environments in their territories. Roberts4 shows this very well in his research. Self-service, self-enrichment and self-empowerment formed the bases of their British thought and behaviour. They tapped other nations’ resources, potential and human energies by overpowering them. In this way, they created a self-perpetuating wealth, opening up and creating new resources and more wealth at the costs of the oppressed.4

Roberts writes4:761:

The profits of Congo rubber, Burmese teak or Persian oil would not for a long time be reinvested in those countries. The poor European and American benefited from the low prices of raw materials, and improving morality rates tell the story of an industrial civilization finding it possible to give its peoples a richer life. Even the European peasant could buy cheap manufactured clothes and tools while his contemporaries in Africa and India still lived in the Stone Age.

In the minds of the British, the inhabitants of the Cape Colony were uncivilized. A later reference after the British final occupation of the Cape Colony in the 1800s reveals that the felt obliged to make the people of the backwards Cape Colony acceptable and functional so that they could become part of the mighty British Empire.

Compared to what the British knew as civilized, the Cape Colony indeed did not hold to this standard Roberts writes4:761:

When they looked for it, they tended to see only heathen, backward, benighted people or a few striving to join the civilized. Such an attitude was an important part of the story of European success; what were taken to be demonstrations of the inherent superiority of European ideas and values nerved men to fresh assaults on the word and inspired fresh incomprehension of it. The progressive values of the eighteenth century provided new arguments for superiority to reinforce those originally stemming from religion. By 1800, Europeans had lost almost all of their former respect for other civilizations. Their own social practice seemed obviously superior to the unintelligible barbarities found elsewhere.

It was in this “uncivilized” Cape Colony that the British arrived in 1795. Up to 1872, they ruled the area without disturbance by means of a series of autocratic governors. The period 1795 to 1872 can be divided in four: the first British occupation as caretaker of the Cape Colony (1797–1803); the Cape as a colony of the Batavian Republic (1803–1806); the second British occupation of the Cape Colony by conquest (1806–1814); and the British occupation of the Cape Colony by treaty (1814–1872). A total of twenty-nine governors served between 1795 and 1872 (2 Dutch and 27 British).

1.3 Overview of this study

This article (Part 6) is part of the second project (Project 2) on the executive leadership and regimes of South Africa. The two projects cover the period 1652 to 2018. The first series (Project 1) of five articles (Part 1 to 5) have been published in Ensovoort. The first five articles evaluated and described the performance profiles of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa (previously the Cape Colony) for the period 1652 to 1795. These five articles, published under the main title: An appraisal of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa: 1652 to 2018, are titled as follows:

  •     Part 1: Leadership characteristics in perspective;
  •     Part 2: The entities in government and society that executive political leaders use to aid     their political behaviour;
  •     Part 3: Factors that influence the development of executive political leaders;
  •     Part 4: A basic checklist for the appraisal of executive political leaders and regimes;
  •     Part 5: The performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes for the period     1652 to 1795.

The reader is referred to this first project for the theoretical basis of this endeavour. The five articles that constitute Project 2 cover the remaining period of 1796 to 2018. In this project, the focus is on the performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes in five timeframes: 1796 to 1872 (Part 6), 1873 to 1909 (Part 7), 1910 to 1948 (Part 8), 1949 to 1994 (Part 9) and 1995 to 2018 (Part 10).

2. Method

The research was done by means of a literature review. This method has the aim of building a viewpoint from the available evidence as the research develops. This approach is used in modern historical research where there is not an established body of research, like with the functioning of executive political leaders and their regimes of governance for the period 1795 to 1909 in South Africa. The sources included articles for 2018, books for the period 1945 to 2018 and newspapers for the period 2016. These sources were consulted to evaluate the functioning of executive political leaders and to put thoughts, views and opinions on the South African political leadership for the period 1795 to 1909 in perspective.6-8

The research findings are presented in narrative format.

2.1 Problem statement

The research question asks whether the executive political leaders of South Africa (Cape Colony) during the period 1795 to 1872 made any extraordinary contributions to the country and its people and whether their behaviour as leaders and individuals was above reproach.

  •     People refers to all the South African groups – the various races, cultural groups, tribes, etc. It includes the minorities and the majorities – it does not refer to any sole grouping in terms of dominant political party, etc. In the above reference would it be more correct to refer to     “peoples”.
  •     Country refers to today’s greater South Africa as represented by the Republic of South Africa. It also refers to the Cape Settlement and Cape Colony, etc.

2.2 Research aims

  •     The first aim of the research is to determine if the South African executive political leaders and regimes of the period 1795 to 1872 made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time of rule.
  •     The second aim of the research is to determine if the behaviours of the South African     executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 were above reproach.

In light of above, two research questions must be asked and answered to discover the truth about the South African executive political leaders. This then leads to two objectives, as well as two hypotheses and two alternative hypotheses.

2.3 Research questions

The following two research questions focus the research intentions:

RQ1: Did the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 make any extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their times in office?

RQ2: Were the behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 as leaders and as individuals above reproach?

2.4 Objectives of the study

The following two objectives guide the study:

RO1: To determine if the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 made any extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time in office;

RO2: To determine if the behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 as leaders and as persons were above reproach.

2.5 Hypotheses

The following two hypotheses and two alternative hypotheses are tested:

H1: The South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time in office.

H1A: The South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 did not make extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time in office.

H2: The behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 as leaders and as persons were above reproach.

H2A: The behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 as leaders and as persons were not above reproach.

3. Results

3.1 First British occupation as caretakers of the Cape Colony (1797–1803)

3.1.1 Autocratic governors

During the British government’s acting as care-taker of the Cape Colony on behalves of the Prince of Orange, the following four British governors’ served1,2,9:

1797–1798: George Macartney

1798–1799: Francis Dundas

1799–1801: Sir George Yonge

1801–1803: Francis Dundas

The British temporary military management under General Craig started well and he attracted positive input from many pro-colonists. The colonists were required to take an oath of allegiance to the British king for as long the Cape stays British property. The rights and property of the VOC were transferred to the new authority, but the laws, rights and customs of the colonists stayed the same. The Cape, Stellenbosch and Swellendam accepted the new regime, but Graaff-Reinet stayed aloof until November 1796 after the defeat of the Dutch fleet at Saldanha Bay. Many of the Cape inhabitants, even those took the oath of allegiance, remained hostile to the British.1-3,5 George Macartney (1797–1798)9        

On 5 May 1797 with the take-over by governor, Duke Macartney, political management suddenly changed to a strict form of Crown colony management. He introduced Imperial Authority immediately at the Cape and over the Colony, a system that remained valid until 1872. All civil and military powers were now vested in the hands of the Governor, he abolished the Political Council and soon after that the other bodies. He also created a strong official management, excluding the colonists. Any form of direct representation was absent and a further loss of political freedom followed. Strict action was taken against colonists who refused to take the oath of allegiance to the British king. A new High Court of Justice replaced the Council of Justice, while the Appeals Court consisted of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor (the commander of the military forces) with the right of higher appeal to the Privy Council in Britain. Most of the other administrative and judicial bodies of the VOC remained. The Roman-Dutch Law was retained.1-3,5

Improvements included the abolishment of corrupt monopolies, overdue land tax were written off, there was freedom of conscience and religious freedom, and torture and the barbaric execution of the death penalty on slaves were abolished. He also made the benefits of the two English Navigation Acts of 1651 and 1660 applicable on the Cape colonists.1,2,5

However, the British love for material gain emerged in the benefits and salaries paid to the British top executives and their officials, undoubtedly to detriment of the colonists. In this sense, the British were no improvement. British officials like Frans Bresler and John Barrow who were placed at Graaff-Reinet to oversee the eastern border of the colony were responsible for much of the hostility towards the British. Macartney favoured and promoted Anglo-orientated colonists, which damaged his relationship with the White inhabitants.1,2,5

The biggest challenge for Macartney was to solve of the conflict between the races, especially keeping the Xhosas within in the confines of their territories with promises and smart talk. More or less the same approach of “termination” was followed that the VOC took. The colonist-commandos received orders to keep them in their place and if needed, to drive them to the Kalahari. He tried to solve conflict by separating White and Black along the borders where the different groups started to come into contact more and more. The Macartney apartheid of 1798 failed in the end, as did the grand Apartheid of the NP a hundred and fifty years later.1,2,5

Although the temporary British government’s executive leader created a better administrative environment, Macartney failed to establish a balanced government to benefit all the inhabitants living in the Cape Colony. The British government, like the VOC government previously, was one of autocracy. Francis Dundas (1799–1799, 1801–1803)9

The Lieutenant Governor of the Cape Colony’s forces, Francis Dundas, acted as the first governor (the office was run by Sir George Yonge’s from 1799 to 1801).

Craig’s arrest of the two Graaff-Reinet leaders, Adriaan van Jaarsveld and Marthinus Prinsloo, caused conflict between the early Afrikaners and the Britons that did not calm down before 1961. The result of these arrests was a group of colonists from Graaff-Reinet on the eastern border staged their first failed rebellion. At the same time the attitude of the KhoiKhoi, mostly those living along the Orange River on the undefined northern border, changed for worse and serious conflict broke out between the Whites and the KhoiKhoi. Some British officials sided with the KhoiKhoi, which caused a further deterioration of the relationship between the early Afrikaners and the British governor and the other officials appointed by the British government. Meanwhile, an alliance formed between the KhoiKhoi and the Xhosas. The situation became very dangerous for the colonist farmers on the Eastern Frontier. The Xhosas attacked the southern part of Graaff-Reinet, committing atrocities and creating enormous chaos during the Third Xhosa War. No real action against the Xhosas and KhoiKhoi followed. The only consequence was new regulations, and the early Afrikaners felt that these regulations favoured the KhoiKhoi and the Xhosas. The British authority compelled the colonists to behaviour well towards the KhoiKhoi and the Xhosas. The British also limited the punitive action farmers could take against the KhoiKhoi and the Xhosas after an attack or livestock theft. The eastern border districts were reduced to chaos, with homesteads and farms being burned down. Racial hatred against the KhoiKhoi, Xhosas and KhoiSan deepened, especially after the Xhosas occupied large colonial areas in the east of the colony.1,2,5

Although Dundas did improve the Cape Colony in some ways, he could not solve the increasing conflict on the eastern border. The political strife between Blacks and Whites was far worse by 1803 than in 1795.

3.2 Batavian Republic (Dutch Colony) (1803–1806)9

During the Council for Asian Possessions’ rule of the Cape Colony on behalf of the Batavian Republic, the following two governors served9:

1803–1804: Jacob Abraham Uitenhage de Mist

1804–1806: Jan Willem Janssens

The Peace of Amiens between Britain and France gave the colonies back to the Netherlands. The VOC was closed down in 1798 and replaced in May 1800 by the Council for Asian Possessions, a body subject to the Dutch government. They were responsible for the further administration and management of the Cape Colony. The Cape was handed back to the Batavian Republic in February 1803 to be governed by a commissioner general. De Mist was appointed in the position, assisted by General JW Janssens as the governor in charge.1,2,5

De Mist quickly established a functioning system. Many of the VOC bodies were reinstated, like the Political Council and the Council of Justice. The Cape Colony’s juridical status changed to that of a province of the Netherlands and was managed directly from there.1,2,5

The non-Whites who had no human rights up to 1803 were now burghers and formed the majority of the population. By 1803 there were 22 000 Whites versus 25 000 slaves and 10 000 KhoiKhoi (making the population ratio 4:6), while in 1805 there were 25 757 Whites versus 29 545 slaves and 20 006 KhoiKhoi (ratio 3:6). Both De Mist and Janssens, as liberal thinkers, were worried about the oppression of the Blacks by the government itself and by the colonists, especially in the areas along the inland borders. This concern was justified, seeing that the non-Whites were the majority, and growing, left without any civil or human rights from 1652. The Dutch leaders improved on many of the regulations designed to limit the lawless actions of the White frontiersmen. They for instance compelled White employer to sign service contracts with their KhoiKhoi employees. This was a positive step that better work- and race relations. De Mist also wanted to gradually emancipate the slaves by freeing slave children at birth. However, his short period at the Cape and the rigid attitudes of the White farmers thwarted his humanitarian efforts. The White farmers wanted cheap labour and they kept importing of more slaves.1,2,5

Another positive contribution was De Mist’s establishment of a Board of Education to manage education and to rectify the neglect of education by the British caretakers. His intent to get education of an equal standard to the frontiersmen is especially noteworthy. He also focused on maintaining of free trade and made efforts to improve the local wool and wine industries. With respect to religion, he introduced measures to reorganise and recognise various religious dominations. This included help with gatherings of congregations to the payment of their ministers. However, he made it clear that the church in all its forms is subject to the state. He addressed the colour issue directly, opening religious practice to all.1,2,5 Van der Merwe writes5:147:

…public religious gatherings on Sundays could only take place on Sundays with open doors, so that no-one, Christian or heathen, White or Black, slave or free man, could be refused entry (Own translation).

For the first time since 1652, there was the flickering of hope that there would be a form of executive and political leadership that would serve all the populations of the Cape, gaining the respect, support and approval of all races. The hope was that this leadership would guide the future politicians in their duties and behaviours as leaders at the Cape.1,2,5

De Mist’s Memorie expounded a new civil and juridical code of governance that was unknown to the Cape Colony until that time. It covered every facet of live from health, education, religion, economics, farming, civil and political rights, defence to taxation. Although the De Mist Code did not suggest one-man-one-vote, his various governmental and civil bodies granted more representation to inhabitants in every sphere of life and clearly intended to end civil unrest in daily life. His code also limited power abuse by the executive leaders of the Colony and its inhabitants with respect to economic, civil, political and juridical rights. De Mist did wonders in his short time (1803–1804) at the Cape. Although his progress with rights for non-Whites was limited, he significantly improved the situation of the Whites.1,2,5

Regarding the Black–White issue, especially in the Graaff-Reinet and areas along the eastern border, he addressed possible future mistreatment of the slaves, KhoiKhoi, Khoisan and the Blacks by the colonists by the placing of a subdivision of soldiers there to oversee justice. However, his liberal policy of befriending the Xhosas failed, as evident from continuing attacks. De Mist’s one-sided view of the non-Whites as the only victims at the hand of the colonists changed over time. The Whites often saw reprimands for illegal Black behaviours as support for the Whites. Later in history, Whites often cited these incidents as proof of the evil intentions of the KhoiKhoi, Khoisan and the Xhosas in the 1800s. They rarely mention the transgressions of the Whites, like land grabbing, stock theft and the murder of these non-Whites as punishment actions (like the “hunting” of the KhoiSan).1,2,5

Historical writings rarely reflect both sides of the story. The events occurred in a less civilized world than today. The Whites saw the KhoiKhoi, Khoisan and the Xhosas as African barbarians, and the non-Whites saw the White frontiersmen as White barbarians. The impact of these early conflicts on later hostility and counter-hostility is often underestimated. The problems that started in 1652 and that went on to affect South African politics until 1994 and beyond, did not resolve under De Mist.1,2,5

In 1803 De Mist entered a political system where racial differences (and discrimination and domination) affected religion, culture, cognition, emotion, education, lifestyle and standard developments and functioning and where these differences were already deeply entrenched. The situation could not have changed with a single code. Continuing the separation that Macartney started in 1798 seemed the best solution, but it ultimately spelled disaster.1,2,5 Van der Merwe describes the doom lurking in De Mist’s policy5:153:

…the intention of the Batavian authorities was to create a better grounding for the relationship between the colonists and the Bantus along the eastern border. According to Alberti [captain of the military forces based at Fort Frederick on the Eastern border and later military magistrate at Uitenhage in charge of overseeing peace in the area], the policy had to be founded on two principles, namely dispelling all Bantus from the Suurveld and driving them across the colonial border, and ending all contact between colonists and Bantus, and between Bantus and Hottentots. This principle was also included in the first message of De Mist to the settled populations along the border districts and to the Xhosa captains. The Bantu had no concept of ‘mine’ and ‘yours’, and this was at the core of all the problems. Nobody was allowed to move across the border and back. Alberti felt that sixty soldiers would be enough to patrol the border. The policy therefore came down to inexorable separation to maintain peace between the eastwards migrating Whites and the southwards moving Bantu stream (Own translation).

The above description reveals the complete lack of understanding of the problems along the border. The Blacks and Whites were seen as two groups, there was no understanding that neither these categories consisted of a natural unity. At this point in history, not a single executive political leader, Dutch or British, had shown insight or had made decisions beyond their own short-term interests. The leaders came from European tradition of the separation of nations where each nation is financially independent and large enough to form a nation. This was not the case here. What is more, the right to land and the ownership of land played a significant role in the relationships. The South Africa of the 1800s was basically an agricultural economy, making the sole ownership of land a point of conflict. It was naïve of Alberti to think that they could stop the migration of the different groups. It was a complicated process, and the politicians of the 1800s were used to settling these kinds of problems with brute military force.1,4

De Mist’s hopes that his governance would inspire good leadership that would serve all the populations of the Cape and that he would be remembered as a leader who was respected, supported and approved by all the different races, failed to become a reality. He started well in 1802, but he undid all of his own good work. This begs the question: Would any future South African judiciary or political regime or executive leader be able to do better than De Mist? Time will tell.

De Mist and his assistant Janssens inherited a dysfunctional system. They had the genuine intention to better it and made honest attempts in their short rule of two years (1802–1804). However, it was already an unhealthy situation where each race was trapped in their little corner with their own fears. Van der Merwe5 writes as follows about De Mist and Janssens5:155:

However, their work at the Cape was not without fruit, although their limited time did not allow for it to be thoroughly tested. Their labour was fraught with extraordinary difficulty. All their actions and decisions were aimed at promoting the good of South Africa. In cases where measures were not received well by the citizens, this should not be attributed to ill will or a lack of diligence, but rather to the fact that the authorities were not informed of the intricacies, morals and habits of the communities to which these measures were made applicable. They regarded the communities as people with the same prejudices as all colonists, which was not true. This became clear from the colonist’s views of all beings who are not White, and their religious views in this regard. In essence the leaders were confronted here with a people who were no longer Dutch, but who showed the traits of a new, separate nation with an own language and views regarding all terrains of life, and they differed significantly from those of their Dutch, German and French contemporaries (Own translation).

Van der Merwe5 poignantly captures the problems created by the fact that the White inhabitants were developing a unique political identity. They actually needed their own state by the 1800s, run independently without outsider interference or intervention. He highlights the beginnings of the early Afrikanerdom, a people prepared to challenge anyone who dares to limit their identity and human rights. However, this imminent Afrikaner historian does fail to describe, like many of his contemporaries, the many changes and transformations the KhoiSan, KhoiKhoi and Xhosas also underwent, often by force, since the 1600. Nor does he acknowledge the role, good or bad, that the Whites (both inhabitants and authorities) at the Cape played in these many changes and transformations. This information sheds light on why the Cape Colony’s politicians and executive leaders failed to appoint good leaders and to establish a permanent regime up to the 1800s.1,2,5

Most historians and Afrikaner scholars fail to offer sound alternatives to the political debacle of the 1800s and to indicate how early Afrikaner nationalism and its hunger for territory and political power over the non-Whites could have been managed differently. It took an outsider, the historian JM Roberts4, to do this in the space of only a few pages in his History of the World. The De Mist Code was by far the best guideline for managing affairs at the Cape. It had the potential to change the attitudes of both non-White and White inhabitants and to unite them under a good leader. The potential of the code was immediately lost with the British imperial intervention of 1805. The British failed to understand the early Afrikaner, perhaps as result of their “civilized” British culture. De Mist and the Batavian rulers did have this understanding. Van der Merwe5 rightfully points out that there was too much of the Rousseau doctrine left in the British mindset and too little common sense.1,2,4,5

However, the British also failed as a result of how contaminated the system was by the political dogmas, doctrines and ideologies of the early Afrikaners and the non-Whites themselves. Neither the early Afrikaners nor the non-White tribes designed these dogmas, doctrines and ideologies. They were inherited from the various foreigner rulers of the Cape and exacerbated by poor leadership. The British were notorious for ruling with dogma.1,2,4,5

De Mist retired on 25 September 1804 and moved back to the Netherlands in February 1805, leaving the enormous task of being governor to Janssens. However, the plans for the new Cape Colony came to an absurd end with the military takeover on 18 January 1806. The Cape surrendered to the British forces under David Baird for a second and last time.1,2,5

3.3 Second British occupation of the Cape Colony (1806–1814)9

3.3.1 Autocratic governors

Up to 1814 the British held the Cape Colony by conquest and not by treaty rights. The legal position of the Cape Colony as a full British possession was only finalized with the Peace of Paris. The six governors for 1807 to 1814 were1,2,9:

1807–1808: David Baird

1808–1808: Henry George Grey

1808–1811: Du Pré Alexander, 2nd Earl of Caledon

1811–1811: Henry George Grey

1811–1814: John Francis Cradock

1813–1814: Robert Meade  (acting)

From day one it was clear that although the Cape Colony was held by conquest, which should technically have limited their rights to make large statutory and administrative changes, many changes and autocratic actions followed.1,2,5

The second British occupation resulted in comprehensive statutory changes and political conflict between the early Afrikaners and the British, as well as between the early Afrikaners and the various non-White ethnic groups. Although the British promised to maintain certain parts of the De Mist code, there was a dramatic change from a centralized governmental system to a autocratic one-man regime with the governor as head of the executive, legislative and juridical powers. There was no a consulting body to guard against the governor’s misuse of powers, he ruled by proclamation.10

The six governors were autocratic rulers who were only subject to the Secretary of State in London. Their submission was reflected in favouring the followers of the Prince of Orange in civil service appointments at the Cape. Although the Roman-Dutch Law was retained, the High Court was demoted to its lower level status of the pre-Batavian times, while the despised Office of the Fiscal with all its negative features was restored. The Burgher Senate was reinstated as a town council for Cape Town, while it also became an advisory body to the Cape government. Again, the Cape administration was overburdened by highly paid officials as during the first British occupation. The De Mist Code’s stipulations on churches and the improved Batavian administration of rural areas were retained, but the central governmental system was replaced by an autocratic one-man rule. At this time there was still no sign of democracy at the Cape.10

The White colonists were doing well financially as result of the growth in the shipping industry and better sales of produce to these visiting ships and a rise in exports. However, the Black–White conflict really reared its head. Racial conflict and governance problems were awaiting the colony. The Earl of Caledon (1808–1811)9

Caledon’s reign was autocratic, with him being in charge of the executive, legislative and judicial powers. There was no advisory body to temper his behaviour. He legislated by proclamation and was only accountable to the Minister of Colonies in London. He could do as he pleased, and in the case of urgent decisions, he did not always act with wisdom. The lag-time involved in communication meant that London could often not intervene.1,2,10

Some of Caledon’s more positive policies include the division of the territory’s six districts, namely the Cape, Stellenbosch, Tulbagh, Swellendam, Graaff-Reinet and Uitenhage, into smaller districts. This resulted in better administration and offered Caledon more control over the countryside and the unruly White frontiersmen. It enabled him to gradually expand the British system of centralizing political, judicial and legislative power. He attained this goal by establishing a circuit high court at Caledon to support the magistrate’s court, lower the cost of high court cases.10

Caledon regarded human rights as important, especially the position of the KhoiKhoi in the Colony. Up to this point the KhoiKhoi were treated as an independent group managed by own chiefs, although under the care of the Cape government. However, they disintegrated into small travelling groups without work or sometimes in the service of the White farmers. In November 1809, Caledon made the KhoiKhoi inside the country’s borders citizens to whom all laws were applicable. In an effort to manage their movement, all KhoiKhoi had to have a permanent place of residence and needed a pass from their employers to move around. Caledon tried to instil a work ethics in the KhoiKhoi and to make them a future substitute for the slaves, who became a problem for London from 1809. He also wanted to stop White farmers from abusing the KhoiKhoi and being cruel by enforcing work contracts between farmers and workers. This decision elicited a reaction from the London Mission’s managers in South Africa, Read and Van der Kemp, who lived in Bethelsdorp. Dissatisfaction with Caledon’s racial policy spread to London where the philanthropist William Wilberforce was already creating awareness of slavery and the mistreatment of the KhoiKhoi by the Whites at the Cape. This issue quickly escalated after 1814.1,2,10

The Xhosa problem needed swift action from Caledon. They were still living in the Zuurveld and frequently entered the districts of Graaff-Reinet and Uitenhage, causing chaos. However, it was clear to Caledon that driving them back would create conflict with London. He ultimately left an already failed border policy untouched. Black and White were in direct conflict over land, with various governments failing to offer a sound future strategy and a plan for a permanent working relationship between the two groups.1,2,10 John Francis Cradock (1811–1814)

The new governor ignored London’s request not to address the “Black problem” with military action and in the fourth Xhosa war, he drove the Xhosas back across the Fish River. In an effort to limit the fast northwards migration of White frontiersmen into Black territory, he also introduced a new system of land ownership in Cradock in 1813 where the Black-White conflict was prominent. He replaced the loan farm system with a system of hereditary possession, hoping to bind the farmers to their farms to stop them from migrating.10

Cradock’s actions against the Xhosas and the KhoiKhoi quickly got a reaction from the White missionaries at Bethelsdorp and other role players concerned about human rights. This led to the so-called “Swarte Ommegang” (Black Circuit) where several White farmers and their families were accused of theft and murdering KhoiKhoi. Although these accusations were found untrue by judges Strubberg and Cloete of the Circuit High Court, the White farmers lost trust in London as a ruler and in the foreign missionaries. From then onwards the mission stations were side-lined. The Blacks and Whites were now positioned as enemies.1,2,10

Strubberg and Cloete of the Circuit High Court gave a description of how chaotic Black-White relations became in 1814. The groups were played off against each other by foreign powers like Wilberforce in London and Read and Van der Kemp in South Africa. The two judges described the KhoiKhoi at Bethelsdorp as people living in a situation where10:162:

…the natural state of barbarism has seemingly taken the place of civility and social order…where laziness and idleness and the subsequent dirtiness and taintedness have grown to perfection (Own translation)

The two judges also commented on the feebleness of people like Wilberforce in London and Read and Van der Kemp in South Africa as they played off Blacks and Whites in 1814. Grundlingh quotes them as follows10:161:

If the lords Van der Kemp and Read went to the trouble of succinctly and impartially investigating the different stories they were told, they would have viewed many of these complaints that caused a racket inside and outside of the colony as purely fictional, and as a result neither the court nor the government would have been pestered (Own translation).

The Black Circuit was the first sign for the Cape Colony’s inhabitants, especially for the White frontiersmen, that the Peace of Paris of 1814 would change their lives forever and that the British had different plans for them.

Roberts writes as follows about the dramatic impact of the British political system from 1814 onwards4:740:

No European nation has so successfully seeded the globe with its own stock as the United Kingdom. By the end of the nineteenth century, it had created an Anglo-Saxon world which was an identifiable sub-unit within the ambit of European civilization, with an historical destiny diverging from that of the European continent. Its components included growing British communities in Canada, Australia and South Africa (the first and the last containing other important national elements, too).

The Dutch descendants in the colony had settled into a quasi-Dutch lifestyle and governmental dispensation. The change to an autocratic British system was dramatic and they struggled to adjust. To some extent, they never accepted it and sought to escape, like with the Great Trek later. The indigenous people who mostly lived outside the Cape’s statutory and political management and control experienced this change from a Dutch to a British system as less dramatic. This was also true for the slaves who had become separated from the ruling processes as a result of their loss of human rights.1,2,5,10

Looking back at the British rule of 1806 to 1814 critically, it was an immensely autocratic regime, for Blacks and Whites alike. It left the Whites confused. The situation was equally devastating for non-Whites, especially the slaves, the KhoiKhoi and the KhoiSan. Notwithstanding their new status as citizens awarded by Caledon, they were exposed to abuses by the White frontiersmen of Swellendam, Graaff-Reinet and Uitenhage more than ever. On the other hand, the slaves, the KhoiKhoi and the KhoiSan were also often cruel and barbaric towards the Whites. Livestock was frequently stolen and they were lazy and undisciplined. No one-sided description of either of the groups at the Cape could do justice to history. These renditions of history should be considered critically. For example, one Afrikaner historian wrote as follows during the heyday of Grand Apartheid10:161:

Some of the complaints pertained to events in the remote past and a great number sprung from the fruitful and stimulated imagination of the Hottentots with their unbridled tongues and the malicious of unbalanced negro-loving zealots. It is true that there were cases where workers and servants had been abused in the pioneer community along the Cape borders, just like in America and even in a factory country like England, but one can assume that the Cape colonists did not act more callous than their White peers elsewhere and that the non-Whites in the Cape colony in general were better off than people elsewhere (Own translation).

Grundlingh10 words here are not quite true and are to a certain extent in line with the thinking of DF Malan, HF Verwoerd and BJ Vorster, leaders of the racist NP. He contradicts himself no less than six times in the above passage. By referring to the “remote past”, he acknowledges that the early Afrikaners did indeed commit wrongs towards the KhoiKhoi. With the reference to “unbalanced negro-loving zealots” he not only uses inappropriate language to create a false history for his Afrikaans readers, but also shows his subjectivity. This was so characteristic of the Afrikaner nationalist historians who wrote during Grand Apartheid. When he speaks of the “pioneer community along the Cape border”, he gives away his naiveté about who the Swellendam, Uitenhage and Graaff-Reneit border farmers really were. They unlawfully invaded Black territory, what we would call terrorism today. The claim that “the non-Whites at the Cape colony in general were better off than elsewhere” is a blatant lie. White farmers from Swellendam and environs went on official “hunting expeditions” to “terminate” KhoiSan and to take the KhoiSan womenfolk and children as “apprentices”, meaning forced slaves. This makes his claim far-fetched. These farmers constantly rebelled against the government, one reason being that their actions were no longer condoned.1,2,10

I would like to refer back to Geen’s1 words quoted in Part 5 about the calibre of the farmers who lived in the region of Swellendam, Graaff-Reinet and Uitenhage around 1814. They became the Voortrekkers, some rising as prominent Voortrekker leaders and politicians in the later republics of Transvaal and the Free State. Geen said1:29:

…but the isolation and difficulties of frontier life also made them limited in their outlook, impatient of all forms of control and so intensely individualistic that it became difficult to unite them in effective cooperation. They lost most of their civilization on the way to the Promised Land. Some could write, still more could sign their names, many read the Bible, especially the Old Testament, into which they read a justification of themselves, their beliefs and all their works, but for the rest learning and the affairs of the great world were closed books to them.

This lawlessness among the White frontiersmen resulted in the Slaughter’s Nek Rebellion in 1815 under Frederick Bezuidenhout, which ended with the hanging of five of the ringleaders by Lord Charles Somerset. Geen writes1:57:

In 1815, there occurred the Slaughter’s Nek Rebellion, a typical incident of lawlessness on a distant and disturbed frontier. It was really nothing more than the resistance of a truculent type of frontiersmen to the new conceptions of law, order and justice that were gradually being made effective in the remoter districts.

These farmers lost their civility on their way to the Promised Land. They were cut off from the rest of the world, the Bible serving as their only literature. They read especially the Old Testament and used it justify their actions. This isolation self-righteousness made for naïve decisions on governance later in the republics2:120-121:

The new British authorities had to deal with many of these culturally poor and isolated early Afrikaners on the one hand, and pre-modern Xhosas, KhoiSan and KhoiKhoi with little understanding of simple political and governance matters on the other. They had been schooled to deal with the enemy the African way for centuries, namely war. The political refined British found it difficult to manage the situation.

The second British Cape Colony (1806–1814) with the British holding the colony by conquest, undoubtedly improved the economy of the Cape. Also, from an objective political-historical view away from the contaminated writings of Afrikaner nationalist writers and historians, the governmental administration, law-enforcement and law-making as well as the execution of leadership, progressed. Although serious issues like border and racial conflicts remained largely unchanged, they did have plans to address it. The British governors were backed by a much stronger system than were the Batavian governors.

The South African race issue became more and more laden with aggression, hate and murderous intentions from 1814 onwards.

3.4 Third British occupation of the Cape Colony (1814–1872) by treaty1,2,9

3.4.1 Autocratic governors

The Cape Colony became a rightful British possession with the Peace of Paris. The Netherlands was forced to hand it over to the British Empire permanently in August 1814. The seventeen governors who served from 1814 to 1872 were as follows1,2,9:

1814–1826: Charles Somerset

1820–1821: Rufane Shaw Donkin

1826–1828: Richard Bourke

1828–1833: Galbraith Lowry Cole

1833–1834: Thomas Francis Wade

1834–1838: Benjamin d’Urban

1838–1844: George Thomas Napier

1844–1847: Peregrine Maitland

1847–1847: Henry Pottinger

1847–1852: Sir Harry Smith

1852–1854: George Cathcart

1854–1854: Charles Henry Darling

1854–1861: George Grey

1859–1862: Robert Henry Wynyard

1862–1870: Philip Edmond Wodehouse

1870–1870: Charles Craufurd Hay

1870–1877: Sir Henry Barkly

The British authority lacked democracy. On the other hand, the Boers wanted excessive freedom. This dissatisfaction with authority and the limitations of borders limited their vision. They were intolerant of all forms of control and so intensely individualistic that it became difficult to unite them for effective cooperation. This became characteristic of many of the Boers during the Great Trek and later on in their “Promised Land”, the Boer-republics.1,2,4,10

Between 1806 and 1814 there were not large numbers of British citizens in South Africa, so the British that were present were only there to rule. After 1814 this changed dramatically when thousand of British settlers arrived. Although they were outnumbered by the Boers, they had the backing of the British government and thus the Cape authority. The introduction of British assumptions and laws and the large new English population, created a world that the Boers were not ready for. This ultimately led to negative outcomes. Roberts reports4:777:

This opened a period of whittling away of the privileges of the Boers, as the Dutch farmers were called. In particular, they were excited and irked by any limitation of their freedom to deal with the native African as they wished. Their special indignation was aroused when, as a result of the general abolition of slavery in British territory, some 35,000 of their blacks were freed with, it was said, inadequate compensation.

The Boers became increasingly annoyed, especially with their lack of influence. The Boers found the British regime unacceptable and below standard with respect to full political rights. Roberts says the following about the relationship between the Boers and British4:778:

It was the beginning of a long period during which Anglo-Saxon and Boer struggled to live sometimes apart, sometimes together, but always uncomfortably, their decisions as they did so dragging in their train others about the fate of black African. Charles Somerset (1814–1826)

Somerset arrived at a time when the relationship between non-White and White and between British and Boer had been damaged. The autocratic Charles Somerset damaged these already sensitive relationships further with his management of the unrest at Slaughter’s Neck, causing the dislike for the British occupiers to increase as a result of his over-reach with his political and juridical powers.1,2,10

Somerset inherited the eastern border problem. The policy of segregation failed and led to further Xhosa attacks on the White areas. In this instable situation, two Xhosa leaders entered into conflict themselves. This caused the one leader, Ndlambe, to move into White territory. He reached as far as Grahamstown for an unsuccessful attack on 22 April 1819. Somerset ignored London’s liberal policy and started a clean–up operation by removing the Xhosas from the area between the Fish and Keiskamma Rivers, making the Keiskamma the new outer border. He created a neutral area between the Fish and Keiskamma Rivers as a buffer to keep the factions away from each other and reinstated the segregation policy.1,2,10

Somerset addressed slavery by issuing a proclamation in 1816 making it compulsory to register all slaves. In 1823 he determined the workdays and hours of slaves and prescribed the minimum standard of their food and clothing rations. Married slaves could no longer be sold separately, and the Christian religion had to be made available to them. The number of strokes for physical punishment, and their testimonies were allowed in the court in cases against their owners. In 1826, a slave protector was appointed in Cape Town and various assistant protectors in the rural areas to attend to the complaints of slaves.1,2,10

In the meantime, the British government acted to minimize the Dutch influence in the Cape. They Anglicized the churches, schools and the legal system.1,2,4,10

Although the autocratic and despotic one-man regime at the Cape was replaced by a governor and a Council of Advice that could make laws by way of ordinances, the early Afrikaners could give little input. The problems between the British and the Boers were largely attributable to failure on the side of the British to appoint an effective leader at the Cape who considered the interest of the Afrikaners. Roberts4 points out how this became a situation ready for conflict4:780:

When people then spoke of a ‘racial problem’ in South Africa, they meant the problem of relations between the British and Boers whose conciliation seemed the most urgent need. The defects of the settlement would take some time to appear. When they did it would be not only because the historical sense of the Afrikaner proved to be tougher than people had hoped, but also because of the transformation of South African society which had begun by the industrialization of the Rand could not be halted and would give irresistible momentum to the issue of black Africans.

These racial defects never disappeared – the foundation had been laid for Afrikaner nationalism and its rejection of anything British. The cracks that would lead to a deep divide among Afrikaners, the subsequent founding of the Republic of South Africa 1961, and Apartheid with its racial discrimination, had started to appear.1,2,4,10

The British government was caught off-guard by the British Settlers of 1820. The process started while Somerset was on leave in Britain (1820–1821), leaving the Cape in the hands of an acting governor, Donkin. The settlers, who were used to democracy, immediately got into conflict with the government. This brought a second force to the foreground against the Cape Colony’s way of ruling and their human rights practices. Although most of these immigrants had no voting rights in the UK (this only changed in 1832), they knew what discrimination was why they had to fight it. The settlers’ agitation and resistance on various terrains started slow political reform at the Cape.1,2,4,10

The arrival of the British settlers also affected the Boer–British relations. The settlers were placed in or near Black territories and close to the Xhosa conflict. They became the Eastern Province. They were more well-intended towards the Crown and were therefore considered a better defence. The Western Province was inhabited by a more political independent-minded population.1,11

The Cape colonists did not get into direct conflict with Somerset, they left that to the British Settlers. The settlers had success in 1828 when Bourke came to power.1,2,10

Grundlingh10 writes as follows about Somerset10:174:

The autocratic Somerset in his self-righteousness did not realize that the influence and power of the ruling “High Tories”, his congenial spirits and protectors, were decreasing in his mother land. The rise of the progressive “Young Tories” under the leadership of Canning, and especially the increasing power of the liberal Whi-opposition, heralded the beginning of the end of Somerset’s glory. The increasingly passionate criticism of Dr. John Philip and Exeter Hall contributed greatly to undermining the governor’s authority.

There is no doubt that Somerset made more enemies than friends and that his rule, besides the exaggerations of his Exeter Hall and settler enemies, had serious flaws like tyranny and corruption. The Governor was sharply criticized in the British parliament, and his actions came under the scrutiny of the Colebrook-Bigg commission, who visited the Cape from 1823–1826 for a thorough investigation into a number of government matters (Own translation).

The autocratic behaviours of the various governors at the Cape were being questioned. Human rights also began to make some progress, although it was still limited. The introduction of the first rudimentary rights for the Cape’s Black population was a prominent step in the right direction.11 Richard Bourke (1826–1828)

During Somerset’s second leave (1626–1628), the acting governor, Richard Bourke, suddenly had to face a flood of pro-Black sentiment from for instance John Philip. Bourke himself was pro-Black, and started a process to undo the limitations Somerset and earlier governors had imposed on the Black population. The Black-White conflict was steered by a liberal policy that the early Afrikaners saw as discriminatory. They felt that it affected their property, economic, social and political rights. The British started using KhoiKhoi to police Whites, and with Ordinance 49, all legislation that had forbidden Blacks to cross the border into the Colony was recalled. The punishment expeditions of White farmers to retrieve stolen livestock from across the borders were forbidden. Ordinance 50 recalled all legislation pertaining to the KhoiKhoi and lifted discriminatory laws against the free inhabitants of the Colony with respect to property rights, movement, living place, lifestyle or work and choice of work. The KhoiKhoi, Khoisan and free Coloureds received the right to own property. Legislation to fight slavery was also put in place, with laws to abolish it following. The political and social position of non-Whites in the bigger British society improved dramatically from 1928.1,2,11

This progress with Black emancipation was followed up with the rule of Galbraith Lowry Cole (1828–1833). He shortened the working hours of slaves and stipulated better accommodation. In August 1833 legislation was passed that slavery would be forbidden after the 1st of December 1836 in any of the British colonies.1,2,10

The reformations still did not bring democracy to the Cape. It was a first wave of human rights and freedom for the Xhosas, KhoiKhoi, KhoiSan and slaves.11 Benjamin D’Urban (1834–1838)

D’Urban inherited the immense task of emancipating 39 021 slaves. He had to calculate the value of the slaves. Compensation for slaves became a disputed topic in South African history books as parting with “Black gold” meant tremendous losses.1,2,10

Grundlingh writes10:179:

All this led to utter bewilderment at the Cape. Mortgages were foreclosed on; foreign agents and speculators exploited the confusion of the colonists by buying up their claims for ridiculously low sums. Many slave owners received one fifth or less of the capital value of their slaves. Wealthy families, especially the large patriarchal households in the Western Province, became so impoverished that many were unable to overcome the significant economic crisis. Stock farmers in the outlying districts also suffered. Although they had fewer slaves than the Boland farmers, some of them were quite considerable slave owners (Own translation).

The above Afrikaner sentiment that was mostly put on paper during NP rule, is misleading. Firstly, as with any apparatus or instrument used to generate money, there is always the unavoidable annual depreciation of the apparatus or instrument as a direct result of use and damage (with a slave this would take the form of aging, poor health, being constantly over-worked, poor accommodation, live conditions, and money already generated for his owner, etc.). It seems that the values were calculated on the sales value of the slaves (in other words a depreciated price) in 1836 and not on the initial purchase price minus the depreciation. Secondly, the many children born to slave parents became the sole property of the farm owners. Geen reflects as follows on the economic impact of the developments in the slave trade1:55:

It is true that the abolition of the slave trade proved to be a source of gain for a time, for the value of the slaves increased and, as their owners obtained considerable profit from the hire of their labour, greater care was bestowed on them.

Geen’s1 description below shows the subjectivity and arrogance of many of the White South African writers before 1990. They adhered to an undisputed right of ownership, even as late as the beginning of the 19th century. One human being may own another human as long as the owned person was Black1:55:

However, the numerous regulations made slave-ownership a burden, as the slaves were gradually removed from the control of their owners, though they continued to be private property. In contrast to the West Indies slavery at the Cape was largely domestic and the slaves on the whole were well treated, so that Lord Charles Somerset could write to the Colonial Secretary, ‘No portion of the community is better off or happier, perhaps, than the domestic slave in South Africa.

If the slaves were such a burden, why did the British government struggle so much to grant them freedom from 1816 onwards and why did the White slave owners at the Cape try everything to prolong slavery? Geen1 neglects to mention that it was only in the time of De Mist that the use of the pain bench and the barbarous torture of slaves were forbidden. The 1823, 1826 and the 1830 Ordinances had to end everything that was still happening to slaves. If the Whites were so “fond of their slaves”, seemingly as intimate family members, why did they want to keep them in chains? Somerset is the last person to make remarks on slaves. He had a track record of cruelty to any opposition, even other Englishmen, at the Cape.1,2 Did Geen1 forget the Slaughter Nek’s executions of five White farmers by Somerset or Somerset’s punishment of the Xhosas?

It later became fashionable for South African history books written by Whites to attack individuals such as William Wilberforce, his wife Hannah Gurney, Elizabeth Frey and Dr Philip and other Whites for their roles in the emancipation of not only of Black slaves, but also “free” Blacks from political oppression in their own country by foreign settlers. They were called “Black boeties” or “negrophiles”. These personal attacks lack any sound arguments and insight. These derogatory names were also used by the Afrikaner nationalists of the Verwoerdian republic to refer to Jan Smuts. “Liberal” people like Wilberforce were ahead of their times and they laid the foundation of today’s Code for Humanity. These “Black Boeties” should get more respect in the modern South African political history. They shone the rare light in a dusky world of abuse and suppression of non-Whites, helping to bring humanity to all.1,2,7,10,11,14-17

The importance of these early abolitionists, not only in South Africa but worldwide, is well described by Martinez12:235:

The abolitionists raised the political and moral consciousness of enough people to change the rules of their society. By redefining what was acceptable, they built a movement powerful enough to make the unthinkable inevitable. A similar task faces all those who value freedom today. The moral and political consciousness of society once again needs to be raised; a unifying, compelling, inspiring vision again needs to be articulated – and the ideal of freedom needs to be at its core.

The argument on the “value” of Black slaves is a further indication of how morally sick the White community at the Cape had become over time. Their value was calculated equally to that of cattle in the 1830s. Geen states1:56:

Besides some very old slaves, there were at the Cape 35,800 slaves valued at ₤3,041,290:6:0 – an average of just over ₤85 each…


The colonists did not object to the emancipation itself, …but they did resent the financial loss it involved and, still more, the fact that no vagrancy laws were passed to control the movements of the liberated slaves, who became ‘free persons of colour’ in terms of Ordinance 30.

South Africa had become a White country for the benefit of Whites only. “Free” non-Whites were walking around without work, homes and internal security by the 1830s because of the abuse of non-White labour and the orchestrated disorganization of their societal life, their political suppression, their dehumanization and the illegal occupation of their land by Whites. This resulted in immense poverty and political disorientation. The many similarities between the situation in the 1830s and the situation in South Africa from 1910 to 1994, are obvious. It shows us where the dispensation of 1910 to 1994 came from.1,2,10,14

The fact that farm activities came to a virtual halt without the presence of slaves after emancipation shows how selfishly slave owners previously profited from cheap labour. Why could the members of the large patriarchal families not do the work themselves given their numbers? Was it White laziness? The Council of Policy in 1717 described the Whites as “lazy and incompetent and more expensive than slave labour”,1:22 or was it because the White farmers were13:7-8:

…drunken, lazy, boorish oafs who went to stay at the Fort despite all threats and coercive measures, and set up boarding houses, attempted to exploit sailors and visitors, and further wasted their porch-sitting lives with endless drink and idleness, which is the root of all evil (Own translation).

or was it because,

…every common or ordinary European becomes a gentleman and prefers to be served than to serve…We have in addition the fact that the majority of the farmers in this Colony are not farmers in the real sense of the world, but owners of plantations, and that many of them consider it a shame to work with their own hands.1:25

Although the emancipation was meant to teach Cape Whites to find dignity in manual work, it failed to do so. The early Afrikaners’ alleged loss of about three million rand from the emancipation of the slaves in 1836, is nonsense.10:179 Why could the British settlers make a living on their farms at the Cape without slave labour?10

The poor remuneration to White farmers for their freed slaves is often cited as the main reason for the Great Trek. The poor payment was undoubtedly a secondary reason for the Great Trek, but later Afrikaner writers exaggerated its importance. The primary reason for the Great Trek was racism and the early Afrikaners blindly refusing to be equal to slaves and Black citizens.1,2,10

In this regard Geen writes1:67:

Perhaps, Mrs. Anna Steenkamp, a niece of Piet Retief, writing in 1876 has expressed as truly as anyone the most important cause of the Great Trek: ‘The shameful and unjust proceedings with reference to the freedom of our slaves; and yet it is not so much their freedom which drove us to such lengths, as their being placed on an equal footing with Christians, contrary to the laws of God, and the natural distinction of race and colour, so that it was intolerable for any decent Christian to bow down beneath such a yoke; wherefore we rather withdrew in order thus to preserve our doctrines in purity.

Geen gives an apt summary of the benefits of the emancipation1:56:

…in the words of the great English historian, Lackey, ‘The unweary, unostentatious and inglorious crusade of England against slavery may probably be regarded as among the three or four perfectly virtuous pages comprised in the history of nations’.

In the South Africa of 1830s emancipation did not bring one-man-one-vote, but at least it gave some dignity to non-Whites. However, they were low on the socio-economic ladder. The improvement came solely by order from London, not due to the morality or efficiency of the governors at the Cape.

D’Urban did make changes to the executive management of the Cape Colony to make it more liberal so that it could serve the people. He did this by the replacing the Council of Advisory by a Legislative Council and adding five to seven members to the Cape government. Although the governor’s autocratic power was not greatly affected by this change, this new legislative body’s approval was needed in future for the proclamation of ordinances. However, much of the government was still run from London.1,2,10

The Xhosa conflict did not disappear after the 1830s, notwithstanding the various ordinances to improve the citizenship of non-Whites. This hostile aggression of this situation was far more complex and the various Xhosa wars did not cease. In 1834 the Sixth Xhosa War broke out when 15 000 Xhosa soldiers unexpectedly entered the Colony. The outcome was devastating for the Whites (and for future Black-White relations): 22 White farmers were murdered, 456 homesteads burned down, 5 700 horses, 115 000 heads of cattle and 161 000 sheep were stolen by the Xhosas. D’Urban’s reaction was fierce and swift. He drove the Xhosas from the White farming areas and established the Province of Queen Adelaide between the Kei and Keiskamma rivers. London overruled this in 1836 and the area was handed back to the Xhosas with the reinstatement of the 1819 borders.1,2,10,14

By the end of D’Urban’s reign there had been no improvement in Black-White relations and the direct conflict between the two races raged on, especially the aggression from the Xhosas. In 1846 the new governor, Pedegrine Maitland (1844–1847), fought the War of the Axe. Again the Xhosa warriors penetrated the Colony in a war that lasted the terms of governor Henry Pottinger (1847–1847) and governor Harry Smith (1847–1852).1,2,10,14 Harry Smith (1847–1852)

Smith, like his predecessors, inherited the Cape Colony’s chaotic Black-White relations, border conflicts, growing Xhosa unlawfulness and a London government that lacked an understanding of the political and racial energies of Southern Africa. Some of Smith’s efforts to manage the border did partly correct some of the political failures of the past. In an effort to contain the ongoing war-like behaviour of the Xhosas, Smith declared the area previously known as the Province of Queen Adelaide a formal British area. The name changes to British Kaffraria, but it was not part of the Cape Colony. It became a separate Black reserve, managed by a Chief Commissioner that resorted with the British High Commissioner. However, peace still eluded the border areas. In 1850 military villages in British Kaffraria were destroyed by the Xhosas. Some of the inhabitants were murdered and the Colony was again entered again, which led to another series of murders of White farmers and the destruction of farms.1,2,10,14

What made the situation in 1850 worse, was the entrance of a non-White allied force against the British rulers of the Cape Colony. It no longer consisted of the Black inhabitants of British Kaffraria only, but of groups from Transkei and the Kat river KhoiKhoi. Smith indecisiveness on finding a workable solution to the growing Xhosa problem, led to his replacement by George Cathcart (1852–1854) who successfully reinstalled the British management of British Kaffraria. However, he did not really establish permanent Xhosa rule. This finding of a solution became the task of George Grey (1854-1861).1,2,10,14

By the 1860s it was clear that the autocratic Cape governors, guided by their unable imperial government in London, had been failing to serve all the inhabitants of the Cape, Black and White. The Cape Colony remained autocratic, while the racial situation became increasingly explosive. A permanent hostility had developed between the Whites, mostly the early Afrikaners, and the Xhosas. It seemed that the only resolution would be one of the groups being wiped out completely.1,2,10,14 George Cathcart (1852–1854)

By the 1850s the autocratic style of governance became untenable. A unity started developing among the White Afrikaans-speaking inhabitants and the English-speaking settlers and they started viewing the government as oppressive. This newfound unity was illustrated by their joint obstruction of the boat Neptune, which was set to unload bandits from Britain at the Cape in 1849. Harry Smith, the then governor, wrote as follows about this unity1:80: “This is the first occasion on which Dutch and English inhabitants coalesced in opposition to Government”. Prominent leaders against the penal colony for convicts (similar to Australia) were Porter, Solomon, Fairbairn, Molteno and Stockenström. This unity between the White groups goes deeper: they had an overwhelming belief that London was incapable of understanding the Cape inhabitants’ interests. They strove for self-government based on liberal, inclusive multi-racial politics.15,16

This unity changed the views in London, making the government more inclined to eventually granting some form of self-government for the Cape. The Attorney-General at the Cape sent a draft constitution to London, which was returned after revision by the Privy Council in London.1,2,10,14 This set into motion a process in 1830 where two petitions to London from the Albany District and Cape Town asked for representative government. It was without success. In 1841, the two districts re-petitioned London, on which the Colonial Secretary replied1:79:

The Colony was not ripe for such a measure’ and enlarged upon some of the difficulties in the way of introducing an elective assembly – the choice of a capital, the possible separation of the Eastern Province, the coloured franchise and the danger of the townsmen gaining control of the parliament.

In 1848, Harry Smith renewed the request for self-government at the Cape. This led to the preparation of another draft constitution in February 1850, but infighting delayed the outcome (infighting had behaviour become typical in South Africa and in the later Boer republics).1,2,10,14,16,18

During the office of Cathcart, the first signs of democracy appeared in the Cape Colony with the establishment of a Parliament in 1853 by her Majesty, the Queen. The constitution was finally approved in December 1852 by the Duke of Newcastle, the then Colonial Secretary. It was promulgated as the Constitution Act of 1854. In 1853, the Cape Colony became a British Crown colony. The Cape’s “independence” came through a gradual evolution and not a sudden revolution.1,15,16,18

Geen comments as follows on the work and powers of the first parliament (1854–1858)1:81-82:

The Governor had to convene Parliament at least once a year; he could dissolve both houses of the legislature or the House of Assembly alone; he could approve or veto the bills passed by Parliament or submit them to the Crown, which retained the power to disallow them within two years of their reaching England. The Executive Council was still composed of senior officials appointed by the Colonial Secretary and was responsible to the Governor and not to the Parliament, but it could not follow a policy opposed to the wishes of Parliament, which consisted of two houses. The upper house, called the Legislative Council, consisted of fifteen members elected for ten years, seven by the Eastern Province and eight by the Western Province. On the first occasion, the four members for each Province with the least number of votes had to retire after five years. Members had to be at least thirty years of age and possess ₤4,000 worth of general property or land to the value of ₤2,000. The Chief Justice was the President of the Council, but he had not the right of voting. The lower house, the House of Assembly, had a membership of 46, elected for five years by 22 constituencies, Cape Town alone being represented by four members. The Speaker…was elected by the members and he had a casting vote. The franchise was a liberal one and remained unchanged for almost forty years. The vote was given to all adult male British subjects, who earned at least ₤50 a year or had occupied for at least a year property with a minimum rental value of ₤25 per annum. Thus was Ordinance 50 carried to its logical conclusions and not on colour introduced by the new constitution.

The Constitution Act of 1854 was a relatively liberal document that prohibited any racial or class discrimination. It instituted a non-racial qualified franchise. The same qualifications for suffrage were applied equally to all males, regardless of race. It changed the Legislative Council to the Upper House of the new parliament, of which members were elected according to the Western Province and the Eastern Province that formed the Colony. A New Lower House, the Assembly, was also constituted.16,18

However, the Constitution of 1854 was a troublesome one: it instated a parliament without a parliamentary government. The executive power remained as before firmly with the office of the appointed governor from London. The parliamentary body led to serious conflicts between the representative legislative power and the appointed executive power until 1872. This was especially true during the political abuse and power play of governor Philip Edmond Wodehouse (1862–1870). This unstable governmental system and its ineffective constitution created enormous conflict between the Cape inhabitants and the British in London.11,16,19 Wiid writes as follows about this early effort to bring some form of democracy to the Cape19:324:

The constitution of 1853 carried the seed of self-destruction and provided sufficient proof of its uselessness. Repeated disagreements and deadlocks between the resprentative legislative authority and the elected executive authority, especially during the rule of the autocratic sir Philip Wodehouse, demonstrated that a parliament without parliamentary government under the British system was a constitutional evil (Own translation)

For the poor non-Whites, who formed the majority of the non-Whites and the total South African population, this legislation did not bode well, notwithstanding its non-racial clause. It had the potential to become a White man’s and a rich-man’s constitution to maintain White rule. Both the Dutch and English wanted to ensure that they could dominate politically. This became clearer after 1874. The only power available was in the hands of the executive governor and London.1-3,10

It took eighteen years to move to a more democratic system. Since 1853, a more realistic idea started to develop about effective rule in the Cape. Prominent was the growing political and financial responsibility assigned to the management of the Cape Colony. Internal struggles also obstructed effective governance from London. It was clear that an improvement to the self-management of the 1853 constitution at the Cape was urgently needed.10

The initially introduction of the representative constitution was delayed by the Eight Xhosa War. The First Cape Parliament (1854-1858) was at last opened by Governor Charles Henry Darling (1854–1854) on the 30th of June 1854. The governor that really implemented the constitution and its parliament was Sir George Grey (1854–1861).1,2,10,16,17

This First Cape Parliament (1854-1858) was, in terms of office, followed by the following three parliaments15,16,18:

  • Second Cape Parliament (1859–1863)
  • Third Cape Parliament (1864–1869) [Office was ended by dissolution of British Governor]
  • Fourth Cape Parliament (1870–1873) Henry Barkly (1870–1877)

The deadlocks and conflicts between the representative legislative power and the appointed executive power of the First Cape Parliament continued, hampering political decision-making. In 1862, Wodehouse got into trouble with the Cape Parliament, which refused to take over British Kaffraria from the imperial government or to impose additional taxation. British Kaffraria was annexed in 1865 by a bill that also increased the membership of the Legislative Council to 21 and the House of Assembly to 666 to include the representatives of British Kaffraria. After another conflict and a deadlock in the Parliament in 1869, the governor dissolved parliament. This internal conflict between the executive and legislative powers continued, and in May 1870 the parliament was prorogued. Democracy, even in its primitive form, was not handled effectively by the Cape Colony’s inhabitants, however much they dreamed and fought for democracy and their political rights since 1652.1,2,19

Ultimately, the Colonial Secretary ordered Henry Barkly (1870–1877) to introduce responsible government at the Cape. The colony and its ineffective leaders were becoming more of a burden than an asset. The British government felt that drastic action was needed, as Wiid17 states19:325:

The British government argued that, if the Cape colonists would not be ruled from above, they should be allowed to assume the responsibilities of self-government (Own translation).

This noble belief (and hope) of the Empire was easier said than done. Notwithstanding their internal fights and obstructions, Barkly steered the colonists. A Responsible Government Bill was passed to instate responsible government in 1870. It passed successfully through the House of Assembly, but was rejected by the Legislative Council owing opposition from the Eastern Province. The bill was finally passed in April 1872 by both houses, but opposition was still prominent.1,15,16

After unsuccessful appeals to eminent Capetonians, like Southey, Porter and Solomon, Barkly asked JC (John) Molteno (who also became the first Prime Minister) to put a government together, which he did with success. The 1872 Constitution of the Cape Colony, also known as the Constitution Ordinance Amendment Act of 1872, had as its underlying principle full responsible government for the Cape Colony. It brought important changes to the political empowerment of the Colony’s inhabitants. This happened 220 years after the establishment of the Cape Refreshment Settlement. This development ended the autocratic reigns of governors, like Phillip Edmond Wodehouse (1862-1870), who became famous for their wrongdoings. Sir Henry Barkly’s efforts and initiative as well as that of the Colonial Secretary in London to bring full responsible government for the Cape Colony, are praiseworthy and shows that the British leadership in London was not always unsympathetic to the colonists’ interests. Also, the prominent role of Sir John Molteno, an English-speaking Capetonian, in getting Afrikaans- and English-speaking Whites into a political unity to embark on responsible government towards the Union’s foundation, needs special reference. Barkly and Molteno were the first good leaders at the Cape.1,2,15,16,18

The positive implications of the Constitution Ordinance Amendment Act of 1872 were numerous, as Geen1 spells out1:84-85:

Responsible Government means government by a ministry which is responsible to Parliament and which continues in office only as long as it receives the support of the lower house of Parliament. Thus civil servants appointed by the Colonial Secretary and responsible to him through the Governor ceased to form the Executive Council, which from 1872 consisted of a Prime Minister without any other portfolio and four other ministers, all of whom were members either of the House of Assembly or the Legislative Council and belonged to the party in power in the former body. The Cape Government could no longer be ordered by the Imperial Government to do what it did not want to do, though it could have foreign policy of its own and was bound by many British treaties that affected the whole Empire and also by various admiralty and merchant shipping laws. However, the Governor had to act on the advice of the Cabinet in regards to local matters, though as High Commissioner he still had considerable powers in territories beyond the borders of the Cape Colony.

The new constitution held non-racialism as a core value, while the universal qualification for suffrage of ₤25 was seen as sufficiently low to ensure that most owners of any form of property or land could vote. An effort to raise it was successfully stop although it was agreed that rising in levels of wealth would eventually render it obsolete. Many new voters registered, specific the rural Xhosas of the frontier areas who were mostly communal landowners and therefore eligible for suffrage. This caused racial conflict. An important outcome was that the operating language of the Parliament was English, creating to a limitation of (and discrimination against) Dutch-speaking members because of their inability to speak English.15,16,19

The Fifth Parliament (1874–1878) was finally put in place. However, in the eighteen years from the promulgation of the Constitution Act of 1854 to the Constitution Ordinance Amendment Act of 1872, little changed with regard to racial and cultural conflict, and it all transferred to the Union of South Africa.1,2,15,16

3. Discussion

The Third Marquess of Salisbury, Robert Arthur Gascoyne-Cecil, the British prime minister at the height of Britain’s imperial power, believed that to ensure the stability of the wonderful and joyous Empire of Queen Victoria, as little as possible must be done to maintain the utopia. Gascoyne-Cecil summarized this belief in a single sentence quoted by Barber20:1: “Whatever happens…will be for the worse, and therefore it is in our interest that as little should happen as possible”.

Barber20 does points out that Salisbury was by no means the only political leader who aspired to do very little. Barber writes20:1:

William Evarts, secretary of state in the administration of US President Rutherford B. Hayes (1877–81), admonished him once by saying, “You don’t sufficiently realise, Mr President, the great truth that almost any question will settle itself if you only let it alone long enough”.

Barber continues by describing the US president Calvin Coolidge (nick-named Silent Cal).20 His biographer, Amity Shlaes, wrote20:1: “Congress always says ‘Do’. Coolidge replied, ‘Do not do’, or at least, ‘Do less’”.

When looking to the political history at the Cape 1795 to 1872, the Salisbury, Evarts and Coolidge attitude became the curse of the inhabitants of the Cape Colony under British rule. As little as possible happened on the political field. The belief was human rights politics would cause chaos at the Cape. The belief was also that the race factor would settle itself.15,16,19

It seems that although the British governors were well-educated men and had talent in terms of thinking, planning and doing. However, they were driven by the imperial spirit to establish and to maintain their much loved Empire.

In the ‘civilized world’ of the British of 1872, it was clear that the Cape Colony’s inhabitants were lacking good British culture. The British, were obliged to make the people of the backwards Cape Colony acceptable and functional parts of their grand Mighty Empire. This “backwardness” is to a great extent the truth, as Wiid confirms19:324:

This colony was still conducting a politically restricted life and, as consequence, lost many of its strongest sons as emigrants. Before the seventies, Afrikaans speakers – who back then only comprised about three quarters of the white population in the Colony – only provided around one third of the members of parliament (Own translation).

But Wiid shows that this backwardness was also created and maintained by the British Empire with their suppression of human and political rights.

The non-Whites’ voting rights, based on the multi-racial Cape Qualified Franchise, using the universal qualification for suffrage of ₤25 as sufficiently low to ensure that most owners of any form of property or land could vote, was a mislead plan to keep them out of the Parliament. The majority of these non-Whites – from KhoiKhoi, KhoiSan, Coloureds to free slaves, as well as Blacks inside the borders of the Cape Colony – was absolutely poor. Most of them could not speak English, which disqualified them as voters. Even early Afrikaners – people who were better educated and economically more stable in the period 1795 to 1872 – could be excluded by the Constitution Act of 1854. Wiid writes19:331:

In these circumstances the Afrikaans-speaking, who at the time constituted about one third of the White population at the Cape, delivered about one third of the parliament before the seventies (Own translation).

There is an immense difference between professing multi-racial politics or race equality in theory, and practicing human tolerance. The White Cape inhabitants knew from early on that to rule the Colony and its people they must capture and hold on to two intertwined energies: money and politics: they who have the money rule the politics and they who have the politics rule the money. Chomsky21 explains this fact clearly21:55:

…concentration of wealth leads almost reflexively to concentration of political power, which in turn translates into legislation, naturally in the interests of those implementing it…


…concentrated wealth will, of course, try to use its wealth and power to take over the political system as much as possible, and to run it and do what it wants, etc.

The Whites did not want a non-White regime in power after their “own suffering” on the hands of the VOC and the British Empire. Engelbrecht22 remarks on politicians after he reviewed Ronnie Kasrils’s23 book on Jacob Zuma, when he says22:12-13:

Kasril’s book reveals a serpent’s nest that confirms one’s suspicions that most politicians – everywhere, not just in South Africa – are cunning and dangerous snakes. [Own translation].

As a regime the British Empire was cold-blooded towards non-British persons when its interests were endangered. It did not hesitate to use extreme force when needed, as later reflected in their war against the Boers and their families during the Second Anglo Boer War (1899–1902). The British autocratic management of the Cape Colony inspired hostility among Blacks and Whites.1,2,10,12,23

They laid the table for future hate and rebellion.1,2

These British Empire’s military actions towards and suppressions of indigenous Southern Africans from the early 1800s are, when comparing it with their own modern British guideline to describe a terrorist, precisely the same, namely24:9:

  • Violence against a person;
  • Serious damage to property;
  • Designed to influence a  government or an international organization or to intimidate the     public or a section of the public;
  • With the aim of advancing a political, religious, racial or ideological cause.

This brings to the foreground Boon’s25:75 description of the characteristics of a political mobster:

Selfishness; delinquent inclinations all-over; strategies total stripped of all democratic principles, traditions, thinking, planning and doings; absolute intolerant; anti- order; minorities are quickly eradicated; coercion actions characterized by destruction, threat, killings and brutalities; aim the creation of a delinquent mob-reign; aim the exclusive of executive political mob-leaders to reign the country.

This contamination went much deeper: it also contaminated White inhabitants’ mindsets, as already reflected by the White frontiersmen along all the borders of the Colony.

The Cape’s inhabitants’ isolation from true democracy for over two hundred and twenty years made them political immature (and full of distrust for the Empire), as was reflected by their constant internal fighting and senseless tussling before the Constitution Ordinance Amendment Act of 1872 could finally be promulgated for self-management. This political immaturity was also internalized into the mindsets of the Voortrekkers as reflected by the problematic ruling of their Boer republics.

The period 1795 to 1872 was characterized by in-fighting between Afrikaans-speaking Whites and English-speaking Whites, the growth of the British Empire and British supremacy and the suppression of especially the non-Whites of Southern Africa. Murder was justified as a means to control Blacks. As much as the British showed justice to the slaves, they were cruel to those Blacks who were independent of their control and who resisted. The British leaders at the Cape, twenty-seven governors, failed. The “Spook of Godske” (Ghost of Godske), whose sole intention is to inspire racism and racial disharmony who started his night walks at the old Refreshment Station’s fort, it seems, had never come to rest, not even two hundred years later.1,12,19

The British Empire’s constant wavering and unpredictable policy on the personal and political rights of the Coloureds, KhoiKhoi, KhoiSan and Black tribes such as the Xhosas, a policy that ranged from a kind of “apartheid” to assimilation and to extreme suppression, undoubtedly laid the foundation of more than one political tragedy for South Africa waiting in the future.

The British Empire was a failed regime at the Cape Colony. The British never learned from the old Chinese proverb: Of all the stratagems, to know when to quit is best.

4. Conclusions

The two objectives of this study were to discover if the South African leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 made contributions to the country and its people during their time, and to determine if the behaviours of the South African leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 were impeccable.

The conclusions that are drawn from this study are presented in accordance with the aims and hypotheses as postulated in 2.2 to 2.5:

H1: The South African leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people.

The findings of this study show that the leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 failed to make extraordinary positive contributions to the country and its people. # Hypothesis H1 must be rejected.

H2: The behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 were impeccable.

The findings of this study show that the behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1795 to 1872 as leaders and as persons failed to be extraordinary and impeccable. # Hypothesis H2 must be rejected.

Looking at the racial discrepancies, discriminations, injustices and conflicts present by 1872 in South Africa, especially between its individual inhabitants, the Italian proverb: After the game, the king and the pawn go into the same box, is misleading. After two centuries of gaming together, these groups could not fit into one box.

5. References

  1. Geen MS. The Making of the Union of South Africa. London: Longman and Green; 1945.
  2. Scholtz GD. Suid-Afrika en die Wéreldpolitiek: 1652-1952. Pretoria: Voortrekkerpers; 1964.
  3. Beyers C. Binnelandse Beroering en Ondergang van die Kompanjie, 1779-1795. In: AJH     Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.).
  4. Roberts JM. The Penguin History of the World. London: Penguin; 1995.
  5. Van der Merwe JP. Die Kaap onder Britse en Betaafse Bestuur, 1795-1806. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.).
  6. Bless C, Higson-Smith C. Fundamentals of Social Research Methods: An African Perspective. 2nd ed. Kenwyn: Juta; 1995.
  7. Louw GP. A guideline for the preparation, writing and assessment of article-format     dissertations and doctoral theses. 2nd ed. Mafikeng Campus: North-West University, South Africa; 2017.
  8. Maree K, Van der Westhuizen C. Head start in designing research proposals in social sciences. Cape Town: Juta; 2009.
  9. Governors of the Cape Colony. [Internet]. [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from     https://www.geni.com/projects/Governors-of-the-Cape-Colony/12332
  10. Grundlingh MAS. Vyftig Jaar Britse Bestuur, 1806-1854. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.).
  11. Cape Colony. [Internet]. [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cape_Colony
  12. Martinez R. Creating Freedom. Edinburgh: Canongate; 2016.
  13. Van den Heever CM. Generaal JBM Hertzog. Johannesburg: AP Boekhandel; 1944.
  14. Van Der Walt AJH, Wiid JA, Geyer AL. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: NASOU; Annon.
  15. Immelman RFM. Men of Good Hope, 1804-1954. Cape Town: CTCC; 1955.
  16. Parliament of the Cape of Good Hope. [Internet]. [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from     https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parliament_of_the_Cape_of_Good_Hope
  17. Morudu P. Wie dra die meeste skuld? Rapport (Weekliks). 2016 May 22; pp. 4-5.
  18. McCraken JL. The Cape Parliament.Oxford: Claredon; 1967.
  19. Wiid JA. Politieke Ontwikkeling in die Kaapkolonie, 1872-1896. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.).
  20. Barber M. How to run a Government. London: Penguin; 2015.
  21. Chomsky N. Occupy. Parktown: Penguin; 2012.
  22. Engelbrecht T. ‘n Kroniek van ‘n kaalgatperske. Rapport (Weekliks). 2018 Jan. 21; pp. 12-13.
  23. Kasrils R. A simple Man. Kasrils and the Zuma Enigma. Pretoria: Jacana; 2018.
  24. Powell J. Talking to Terrorists. London: Penguin; 2014.
  25. Boon M. The African way: The power of interactive leadership. Sandton: ZebraPress; 1996.


Not commissioned; External peer-reviewed.


The author declares that he has no competing interest.


The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa.


Please note that I, the author, is aware that the words Creole, Bantu, Kaffir, Native, Hottentot and Bushman are no longer suitable terms and are inappropriate (even criminal) for use in general speech and writing in South Africa (Even the words non-White and White are becoming controversial in the South African context). The terms do appear in dated documents and are used or translated as such in this article for the sake of historical accuracy. Their use is unavoidable within this context. It is important to retain their use in this article to reflect the racist thought, speech and writings of as recently as sixty years ago. These names form part of a collection of degrading names commonly used in historical writings during the heyday of apartheid and the British imperial time. In reflecting on the leaders and regimes of the past, it is important to foreground the racism, dehumanization and distancing involved by showing the language used to suppress and oppress. It also helps us to place leaders and their sentiments on a continuum of racism. These negative names do not represent my views and I distance myself from the use of such language for speaking and writing. In my other research on the South African populations and political history, I use Blacks, Whites, Xhosa, Zulu, Afrikaners, Coloureds, KhoiSan (Bushmen), KhoiKhoi (Hottentots) and Boers as applicable historically descriptive names.

An appraisal of the executive political leaders and regimes of the South African: 1652 to 2018. Part 5: Performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes for the period 1652 to 1795

Gabriel P Louw

iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6190-8093

Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa

Corresponding Author:

Prof. Dr. GP Louw

Email: profgplouw@gmail.com

Keywords: appraisal, black, executive, history, leaders, performance, political, profile, regime, white.

Ensovoort, volume 38 (2018), number 7:3

1 Background

1.1 Introduction

When does History begin?

This was a daring question that the eminent historian, JM Roberts, forced to the foreground in 1976 in his brilliant and comprehensive work: History of the World.

Roberts writes1:3:

It is tempting to reply ‘In the beginning’, but like many obvious answers, this soon turns out to be unhelpful. As a great Swiss historian once pointed out in another connexion, history is the one subject where you cannot begin at the beginning. We can trace the chain of human descent back to the appearance of vertebrates, or even to the photosynthetic cells and other basic structures which lie at the start of life itself. We can go back further still, to almost unimaginable upheavals which formed this planet, and even to the origins of the universe. Yet this is not ‘history’.

Common sense helps here: history is the story of mankind, of what it has done, suffered or enjoyed. Even when historians write about a natural process beyond human control, such as the ups and downs of climate, or the spread of disease, they do it only because it helps us to understand why men and women have lived (and died) in some ways rather than others.

One outcome from ‘history’ reflecting the uniqueness of the human species, is not its possession of certain faculties or physical characteristics, but what it has done with it: the human species’ achievements as protraited in its remarkably intense level of activity and creativity, its cumulative capacity to create change. The human culture alone is progressive and was in the past and is presently built up by increasingly conscious choices and selection within it, as well as by accident and natural pressure, supported by the accumulation of a capital of experiences and knowledge, which humans have and have exploited.1:4

Roberts adds that1:4:

Human history began when the inheritance of genetics and the behaviour, which had until then provided the only way of dominating the environment, was first broken through by conscious choice. Of course, human beings have always only been able to make their history within limits. These limits are now vey wide indeed, but they were once so narrow that it is impossible to identify the first step which took human evolution away from the determination of nature. We have, for a long time, only a blurred story, obscure both because the evidence is fragmentary and because we cannot be sure exactly what we are looking for.

Looking to the South African ‘history’ it was and is to date a blurred story, obscure both because the evidence is fragmentary and because we cannot be sure exactly what we are looking for: an exclusive White “history” or an exclusive Black “history”, both saturated with falsities, subjectivities and emotionality, misused over the years until 1994 by the Afrikaners and from 1994 by the ANC regime in their opposing policies of political correctness.

Of a “pure”, true and honestly written South African history was there in the past and will there be in the future not one. History is and was always written by the winner and ruler: objectivity is out of the mindset in South Africa’s political schizophrenia: not the best psychiatric drug can bring about mental clearness and mindset reality. At most, we can talk about a South African political history, inundated by racial conflicts, discrimination and manifold social, psychological, economic and political wrongdoings. In the appraisal of the executive political leaders for the period 1652 to 1795, we must take note of this unavoidable factor of contamination of our history, spreading like cancer into its leaders’ thinking, planning and actions over time.

Before we go into a journey of our past, is it important to note how our official political history (commencing in 1652) compares in age with countries of the greater world and what was the human-political thinking in the middle 1600s when Commander Jan van Riebeeck arrived at the Cape of Storms, renamed the Cape of Good Hope (which seems a more and more faulty name-change), as the first White to be officially mandated to start up a refreshment post, manned initially exclusively by Whites, solely for White interests.

Is South Africa’s political history really impressive in age and a grey-headed “elder” among the world’s countries, as our history books sometimes try to propagate? Roberts1 offers us a time-clock to understand our age when he states1:5:

The roots of history lie in the prehuman past and it is hard to grasp just how long ago that was. If we think of a century on our calendar as a minute on some great clock recording the passage of time, then white Europeans began to settle in the Americas only about five minutes ago. Slightly less than fifteen minutes before that, Christianity appeared. Rather more than an hour ago a people settled in southern Mesopotamia who were soon to evolve the oldest civilization known to us. Thus it is already well beyond the furthest margin of written record. According to our clock, people began writing down the past much less than an hour ago, too. Some six or seven hours further back on our scale and much more remotely, we can discern the first recognizable human being of a modern physiological type already established in western Europe. Behind them, anything from a fortnight to three weeks earlier, appear the first traces of creatures with some manlike characteristics whose contribution to the evolution which followed is still in debate.

The South African political history, coming from the 1600s, is a suckling baby, still totally dependent on outside care to survive. But the positivity to this is that this baby has the youth on its side to be able to grow into a wonderful adult with time, if he/she receives the right parental care and guidance. Indeed, what went wrong so far in the country’s past can be rectified with ease by its people, depending on the ability, integrity and vision of the regimes they are going to allow to reign over them.

But to understand the above reference: first White to be officially mandated to start up a refreshment post, manned initially exclusively by Whites solely for White interests, and thus the bringing about and the anchoring of an extremely problematic political history for South Africa, it is important to reflect on those first Whites’ arrival in 1652 at the Cape. These establishers of an exclusive European culture at the Cape, and their political thinking, planning and actions, were strongly vested in the 1600-1700s’ rigid European negative dogma, doctrine and ideology on non-European races.

In this respect the historian and writer Niall Ferguson2 mentioned that race had been a powerful and violent preoccupation already in early times; it is not exclusive to modern times only. This predisposition brings to the foreground the question why this long-coming race inclination? He writes2:li:

An answer that suggests itself – also, as it happens, from the literature on evolutionary biology – is that racism, in the sense of a strongly articulated sense of racial differentiation, is one of those ‘memes’ characterized by Richard Dawkins as behaving in the realm of ideas the way genes behave in the natural world. The idea of biologically distinct races, ironically, has been able to reproduce itself and retain its integrity far more successfully than the races it claims to identity.

In this context Ferguson elaborates that2: li-lii:

As is well known, the first ostensibly scientific attempt to subdivide the human species into biologically distinct races was by the Swedish botanist Carolus Linnnaeus (Carl von Linné). In his Systema Naturae (1758), he identified four races: Homo sapiens americanus, Homo sapiens asiaticus, Homo sapiens after and Homo sapiens europaeus. Linnaeus, like all his many imitations, ranked the various races according to their appearance, temperament and intelligence, putting European man at the top of the evolutionaty tree, followed (in Linnaeus’s case) by American man (‘ill-tempered…obstinate, contented, free’), Asian man (‘severe, haughty, desirous’) and – invariably at the bottom – African man (‘crafty, slow, foolish’). Whereas European man was ‘ruled by customs’, Linnaeus argued that African man was ruled by ‘caprice’.

Ferguson2 writes that when the American Revolution arrived, the above “Linnaeus thinking” was immensely wide-spread in the greater European communities. All that was outstanding was whether racial differences reflected gradual divergence from common origin or the lack of such a common origin, as propagated by the polygenists. Racial theorists had with time devised more elaborate methods of categorizing race differentiation, like the skull size and its shape, etc, but the basic ranking system never changed. In his book, Hereditary Genius, published in 1869, the polymath Francois Galton devised a sixteen-point scale of racial intelligence, which scaled the Australian Aborigines at the bottom versus Ancient Athenians on top.2

This was, with the above already discriminatory cognitions, internalized into their mindsets for generations when the first Cape settlers arrived. It must be noted that during the period 1652 to 1671, when there was an immense shortage of European womenfolk, but many Black slave womenfolk available, the basic human sexual needs of the White men overcame, to a certain extent, these racial taboos, which led thereto that three out of four children born to slave mothers had White fathers. It was only after 1671 with the Godske Instruction and the Netherlands Authority’s direct intervention at the Cape on race relations and racism, that the Linnaeus dogma of White superiority won again and the “first apartheid law of South Africa was promulgated”. From there onward the South African history became a White political history: steered, driven and written by Whites. In particular, it became an Afrikaner history representing “Afrikanerdom” glorification, thinking and promotion. It is in this unfortunate context of the South African history and its executive political leaders, that their leaderships and regimes of governance will be appraised for the period 1652 to 1795.3-9

To understand the context of my above remark, read what Afrikaner historians write about this 1652 to 1795 exclusively Afrikaner-created history, with the Afrikaner as a European the single focus as the creator and saviour of Southern Africa, ignoring the non-European contribution totally. In his autobiography General JBM Hertzog, published in 1944, the well-known Afrikaner writer and Afrikaner novelist CM van den Heever, writes10:9-10:

The Dutch national group lost their ties to their motherland as a result of isolation and as one generation gave way to the next. The French Hugenots and the Germans were soon absorbed into this group, and their language disappeared and became a new one, leaving behind only a trace here and there of the original Seventeenth Centuary Dutch language (Own translation).

The new citizen did not let his ties to the motherland go on his own. He left behind the crux of the new culture as he went further into the interior as he followed a northerly path. This helped to prepare the new, wild world for the Afrikaans culture, which has its roots in farming life (Own translation).

At the beginning of the Eighteenth Centuary, clear indications of a feeling of separation from Holland became apparent, a realization that the “Afrikaner” was forming an “apartheid”. This tendency, with increasing self-determination and external pressure, would become greater. The Afrikaans type, including physique, language and outlook on life, was formed. For this Afrikaner, far from Western European cultural sources and trapped in the isolation of the loneliness of the veld, the Bible remained the only source of culture, and life was aimed at the Hereafter (Own translation).

With regard to racial relations in 1944, Van den Heever10 writes about the same degrading view of Blacks as persons and as a group of “danger”, a viewpoint that had been raised thirty-six years earlier in 1908 at the Cape Convention, by some of the most prominent Afrikaner leaders in their discussion of all the races in the to be formed Union of South Africa. Prominent were verbatim remarks then by polically famous delegates, like11:18-19: “…Perhaps at bottom I do not believe in politics for them at all as a means for the attainment of the highest ends, but certainly so far as the Natives are concerned, politics will to my mind only have an unsetting influence”; and: “I do not like the Natives at all and I wish we had no Black man in South Africa”.

In this context of strong racism, Van den Heever also writes10:9-10:

This requires that all kinds of relationships must be captured, most importantly those regarding natives. Jan van Riebeeck was still groping around in this respect, particularly with the consept of a heathen being allowed to marry a white person. Life habits, born out of land circumstances, helped to build an attitude in which the white culture’s future would be protected. By the end of the Eighteenth Centuary, the attitude of the Afrikaner towards the coloured people was alreasdy crystalised, and the Great Trek would sharpen it further. It had become clear to them that very strict handling of the dividing line between White and non-White people was necessary, if they did not want to sink into the barbarism around them (Own translation).

The historian and writer MS Geen12 writes in 1945 in his book: The Making of the Union of South Africa, in the same one-sided way on the history of the country as an exclusive White one, wherein the color Black is seemingly an unknown role-player (also carefully examine his reference hereunder)12:216:

There must also be the fullest appreciation of the contributions that all have made to the making of the Union of South Africa. Alongside the tributes we should proudly pay to the tenacity of the early Dutch settlers, to the courage of the Cape frontiersmen and to the self-sacrifice of the Voortrekkers and their descendants, there must be admiration for those of British stock who have played a notable part in the building of South Africa—administrators and soldiers on the Cape eastern frontier, missionaries, early settlers in the Albany District and in Natal, Lord Milner’s “Kindergarten”, and engineers and financiers, whose knowledge, enterprise and capital built up the great diamond and gold industries with the aid of European and Bantu labour.

The only reference by Geen12 to Blacks was the contribution of cheap labour by Bantus for Blacks (but also similar to the abusive names of natives, kaffirs and barbarians used in Geen’s book) in the diamond industries; in this context to bring at the lowest pay, fortunes to the British mine owners. His praises were exclusively for the engineers’ and financiers’ knowledge, enterprise and capital, which he saw as the persons who solely built up the great diamond and gold industries. With regard to a place in history, taking the lead and making valuable contributions to it, it seems that the Blacks, in terms of Geen’s12 report, were not contributers in the country’s history or even able to make such contributions.12

This notion of non-existence in the 1652 to 1795 period in South African history by Blacks, as reflected by Van der Heever10 and Geen12 is also present in many other South African written histories. Where references come to the surface, it is mostly in a negative context.

* Please note that the author is aware of the fact that the words Bantu, Kaffir, Native, Hottentot and Bushman are no longer suitable terms and are inappropriate (some are criminal) to use in general speaking and writing in modern-day South Africa. The terms do appear in dated documents and are so translated for the sake of historical accuracy and it is thus unavoidable not to reflect them in their original naming here. It is also pertinent used in this article to reflect on some South Africans’ extreme racism thinking, speaking and writing of sixty years and less ago. These names are part of a collection of degrading names which especial Afrikaner historians commonly used in their books and references of pre-1994 in the heydays of Apartheid. In the reflecting on the profiles of executive leaders and their regimes, these degrading names need to be reoffered here to bring racism, dehumanizing, distancing and the suppression of Blacks prominent to the fore-ground. It is important here to can make a classing in terms of the bad-versus-good-classification of executive political leaders and regimes. These negative names do not represent the author’s view-point and he distances him totally from it as commonly speaking and writing language. In his research and writings on the South African populations and political-history he uses names as Blacks, Whites, Xhosa, Zulu, Afrikaners, Coloreds, KhoiSan (Bushman), KhoiKhoi (Hottentot) and Boers, etc., as applicable descriptive names.

1.2 South African literature on executive political leaders from 1652 to 1795

South Africa lacks in-depth literature on the quality of executive political leadership as practiced by its various executive political leaders and their regimes from 1652 to 1795. It is in fact totally absent. Limited references are found on the behavioural and political practices, driven and promoted by the executive political leaders and their regimes.

Biographies on South African executive political leaders, as well as autobiographies by these leaders themselves, are very lacking in information and descriptions on the precise kind of leadership associated with them as the country’s executive political leaders. Most of this South African leadership data reflected in historical and political books, as well as autobiographies and biographies, offers postulations, opinions, viewpoints and “facts” which are mostly subjective and influenced by party- and self-conceit, intentions to promote political gains and frequently the personal glorification of sub-standard and corrupt political leaders and their governments. It is overwhelmingly used to divert attention, especially from the failure of the leaders. Even on failed and low levels of political leadership, some of these political leaders became icons, some even with worldwide status, with very little criticism lodged against them about criminality, psychological malfunction and other behavioural deviations. It is only more recently that our newspapers, sometimes near-defamatory in their reporting, describe the behaviour of our political leaders. In this context we already see some efforts to limit informative reporting in terms of the hate speech legislation.

To make an evaluation on the quality of leadership of South African executive political leaders and governments for the period 1652 to 1795, the descriptions by various political and historical writers on political leaders and governments, as well as the writings of business and management experts on business executive leaders, were consulted.13-26

The aim of this article is to evaluate and to describe the performance profiles of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa for the period 1652 to 1795.

2. Method

The research was done by means of a literature review. This method has the aim of building a viewpoint from the available evidence as the research develops. This approach is used in modern day historical research where there is a lack of an established body of research, like the functioning of executive political leaders and their regimes of governance for the period 1652 to 1795 in South Africa. The sources included articles from 2017 to 2018, books for the period 1961 to 2018 and newspapers for the period 2016 to 2018. These sources were consulted to evaluate the functioning of executive political leaders and to put thoughts, views and opinions on the South African political leadership for the period 1652 to 1795 in perspective.27-29

The research findings are presented in narrative format.

2.1 Problem statement

The research problem is: Did the executive political leaders of South Africa during the period 1652 to 1795 make extraordinary contributions to the country and its people; and was their behaviour as leaders and as people extraordinary and impeccable?

* ”People” refers to all the South African groups – the various races, cultural groups and tribes, etc. It includes the minorities as well as the majorities – it excludes any sole grouping in terms of dominant political party, etc.

* ”Country” refers to today’s greater South Africa as represented by the Republic of South Africa, while it also refers back into the history of the Cape Settlement and the Cape Colony, etc.

2.2 Research aims

  • The first aim of the research is to determine whether the South African executive political leaders and regimes of the period 1652 to 1795,  during their time in office, made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people.
  • The     second aim of the research is to determine whether the behaviour of     the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to     1795 as leaders and as people was extraordinary and impeccable.

In light of the above two research aims, questions must be asked and answered reflecting this argument of truth on the South African executive political leaders. In line herewith are two objectives, as well as two hypotheses and two alternative hypotheses, formulated in terms of the research aims, also to be asked, tested and answered.

2.3 Research questions of the study

The following two research questions focus the research intentions:

RQ1: Did the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 make extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time in office?

RQ2: Was the behaviour of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 extraordinary and impeccable as leaders and as people?

2.4 Objectives of the study

The following two objectives guide the study:

RO1: To determine whether the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 during their time in office made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people.

RO2: To determine whether the behaviour of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 was extraordinary and impeccable as leaders and as people.

2.5 Hypotheses

The following two hypotheses and two alternative hypotheses are assumed:

H1: The South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time in office.

H1A: The South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 did not make extraordinary contributions to the country and its people during their time in office.

H2: To determine whether the behaviour of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 was extraordinary and impeccable as leaders and as people.

H2A: The behaviour of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 was not extraordinary and impeccable as leaders and as people.

3. Results

3.1 The Dutch East India Company

When looking back into the history of South Africa, the Twentieth Century person thinks in terms of an established country with borders, developments, infrastructure, health and educational services, a police force and other security services to safeguard its citizens, etc., mostly missing out on how the fairest Cape looked in 1652: a barren area without buildings, shelters, land under agriculture and just possibly the occasional sighting of a KhoiSan (Bushman) or a KhoiKhoi (Hottentot). It was a total contradiction to what the modern day citizen of Cape Town is used to today. This new beginning in the foreign land was led by Jan van Riebeeck and his group of 80 volunteers on behalf of the Dutch East India Company (VOC), which began the first European ownership of the Cape. (Its legal entity name was the Generale Vereenighde Nederlantsche G’octroyeerde Oostindische Compagnie; in short referred to as the VOC). The VOC, founded in 1602 when the four Netherlands trading companies of Amsterdam, Zeeland, de Maas and the North Quarter almalgamated, fast became a prominent European chartered company. In six years it had broken the Portuguese monopoly of Eastern trade and seized the Moluccas, Java, Amboyna and a large part of Timor. Within thirteen years the VOC owned eight hundred vessels and paid excellent dividends. After that it expanded to China, Japan and Siam and it occupied Mauritius, St Helena and Ceylon and became the founder of the Dutch Empire in the island world of the Far East.4,11,12,30-32

In name the VOC was a private company, but in reality it was a national concern with the Dutch Government as the main shareholder and only Dutch subjects could hold shares, preferably in large amounts. Its titular chairman was the Stadtholder, while the States-General gave the VOC its charter. Its management, like that of the United Provinces of Netherlands, was federal in constitution with the Council of Seventeen in charge, consisting of representatives of the chambers of the four original companies. The ultimate trading operations were controlled by this Council of Seventeen [also called the HERE XVll: the 17-Members: 8: Amsterdam; 4: Zeeland; 2: de Maas (Rotterdam and Delft); 2: the North Quarter ((West Friesland) while the 17th member was elected in consultation by Zeeland, de Maas and the North Quarter]. The Council of Seventeen governing its colonial possessions, maintaining its army and taking responsibility for treaties with foreign powers. The government of the Cape of Good Hope was subordinate to the Governor-General and Council of India which controlled all the Eastern possessions of the VOC from its headquarters at Batavia.12

It was in this context that Commander Jan van Riebeeck on the 6th April 1652 (with the rank “als koopman en opperhoofd’) anchored with three small ships, the Goede Hoop, the Drommedaris and the Reiger, in Table Bay, to start up a refreshment station for the VOC. More importantly, this start up was also the introduction to South Africa its first official executive political leader. Moreover, it signaled the beginning of the country’s political history, based exclusively on White supremacy which drove all thinking, planning and action until 1994. Initially, central to this contaminating outcome, were the Netherlanders as founding fathers of South Africa, and as this political history will soon reflect, also became the only dominant and discriminative role-player until 1795 at the Cape.4,11,12,30-33

It is in this context that this article intends to evaluate and to describe whether the South African executive political leaders and regimes of the period 1652 to 1795 during their time in office made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people. The intent is also to determine whether the behaviour of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 was extraordinary and impeccable.

In light of the domino effect, starting up a chain reaction of governmental oversight in 1652, which ran unbroken for 150 years under various executive political leaders of the VOC, is it thought wise to reflect first at this stage on a chronological list of these various officials’ names and times of office.33 This gives insight into what immense processes are involved in the ruling of a country and how easily the political tides can turn against its inhabitants by the delinquent actions of hostile, delinquent rulers and authorities, as well as the resistance and counter-actions that can follow against such poor rulers and regimes. This list furthermore gives us insight as to why there is reference in this article to a White political history for the period 1652 to 1795 — of Black faces or names there are no significant signs in this list of 72! It seems that only Simon and Adriaan Willem van der Stel were Coloreds, reflecting only a 2.8% representation of non-Whites in the top leadership over a period of more or less 150 years!12,33-36

In addition, the fact that, of this enormously long list of executive political leaders, some were too briefly in office to leave an impact as rulers, provides insight as to why this article on leadership and governance (which is absolutely limited by length, time and costs) can not extract comprehensive data for the total executive political leader population for 1652-1795 (μ=30).33

In 3.2 List of Commanders and Governors for the period 1652 to 1795, the leaders’ names and their times in office, is reflected.33

3.2 List of Commanders and Governors for the period 1652 to 179533

3.2.1 Dutch Cape Colony (1652-1795) Commanders3 Governors (The rank of Commander was changed in 1691 to Governor)12

3.3 First Dutch Authorities

3.3.1 First Executive leader: Commander Jan van Riebeeck of the Cape Refreshment post (1652-1662) Establishment of the Council of Policy

When Commander Jan van Riebeeck arrived on the 6th April 1652 at the Cape of Good Hope to found a refreshment station for the VOC, he also introduced the first administrative and juridical body to manage the affairs of Whites at a South African outpost. Indeed, he got the first Whites rooted in South Africa. The executive body of the VOC, the Council of Seventeen, already identified in the 1630s the need for a halfway station between Amsterdam and Batavia to provide fresh water and food for the crews of VOC ships. The beheading of Charles I of England by Cromwell on 30 January 1649 and the new British ruler’s hostility to the interests of the Netherlands worldwide, had made the Cape of absolute strategic importance as a location to defend the interests of the VOC and the Netherlands Government.4,11,12,30

Van Riebeeck, besides his instructions on how to get the refreshment station going, also received South Africa’s first instructions on how to rule. He was to control as Commander a Council of Policy. As Commander he took the oath of obedience to the Governor-General at Batavia (an outcome that, regarding fast and effective administration concerns, did not always work properly because control over the Cape was slowed down by the distance and a lack of fast communication). Comparing the year 1652 with the year 1795, the whole governing system at the Cape changed very lttle during its possession by the VOC.12

As officer in charge of the station, Van Riebeeck was also the chair of a temporary management board, consisting of designated officials. The first meeting of this body already took place on board the ship Drommedaris, Van Riebeeck’s quarter during the travel from the Netherlands, and for a time his abode while waiting for the construction of the first dwellings at the Cape. When there were no visiting ships in harbor the chief-officer, the secunde, the sergeant in charge of the soldiers and the bookkeeper formed a kind of executive managerial body [later called the Council of Policy (Politieke Raad)]. The secretary, whose main duty it was to keep record of the council’s meetings and its resolutions, did not have any voting rights. The executive managerial power of this start up management body was with time extended by the Administrators of the Board of Amsterdam (Council of Seventeen) to give visiting admirals of home-bound fleets of the VOC from the East the right to act as Commissioners at the station. These Commissioners’ orders had to be implemented by the Cape Commander and his management board. On the other hand, these Commissioners could not act independently without first consulting the Commander and the executive members of the temporary board. Furthermore, the admirals were obliged to report fully to the Council of Seventeen on their orders to Van Riebeeck and the situation at the Cape when they arrived back in the Netherlands.12,31

It is clear that this early Council of Policy intended to assure good administration, but left very little scope for broad political input by all the officials, incoming free burgher farmers and other free burghers. Overbearing leadership was central to management, although it seems as though Van Riebeeck’s treatment in this context of the officials and free burghers showed no signs of under par leadership in terms of administration. The limitation on the authority of Van Riebeeck as chief executive officer – and the exclusion of the incoming free burgher farmers from any say in their occupation and political rights – was reflected when Commissioner Rijckloff van Ghoens, during his visit at the Cape from the 17th March to the 19th April 1657, overrode certain of Van Riebeeck’s contracts with the incoming free burgher farmers. Although Van Ghoens gave the free burghers permission to trade live stock directly with the KhoiKhoi on the condition that all trading material had been bought from the VOC and they did not pay more than the VOC, this privilege was withdrawn by Van Riebeeck himself in May 1658. Furthermore, Van Ghoens changed the three year tax-free period from three to twelve years for incoming free burgher farmers, but he autocratically forbade them to plant tobacco and instructed them to concentrate only on the cultivation of wheat. He also scaled down their unlimited plough land to only 13.5 morgen in size. But most autocratic of all was his decision that the prices to be paid by the VOC for the free burgher farmers’ produce would be decided alone by the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam. This autocratic price-fixing was immediately a problem because a year later, the VOC still had not publically fixed the prices, although they were already well known to Van Riebeeck on the 16th April 1657. This problem was at last solved (although temporailry) in 1659 by Van Riebeeck himself with a request to the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam. Other autocratic behaviour experienced in Van Riebeeck’s reign by the free burghers was the restriction on many of their business rights, such as the selling of their produce only at fixed prices to the VOC, not being allowed to trade with the KhoiKhoi and that they could only sell their produce to ships after three days of their arrival at the Harbor (only up to 25 ships per annum visited then).12,31 Executive leadership practiced by Commander Jan van Riebeeck

In retrospect considering the leadership of Commander Jan van Riebeeck at the Cape, three clear impacts must be taken into account: firstly, the refreshment station was initially seen only as a temporary workplace and business enterprise outside the Netherlands borders. As such the various persons working at the station were initially treated as employees of a business (which the VOC really was) and not as members of a specific juridical entity rooted permanently with its own governing rules and governing body at the Cape. This kind of entity only started to manifest after the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam gave permission on the 30 October 1655 (some sources indicate 1657) for the officials of the VOC to become independent entrepreneurs as free burghers, if they agreed to stay for a further ten years (some sources put it at 20 years) at the Cape in this capacity. This exercise started up with nine married men that were released from the service of the VOC. But even in these circumstances, the VOC was clearly still not in favour of colonization and saw the so called free farmers officially as mere purveyors of corn and wine to supplement the VOC’s own produce at the Cape. Accompanying this emerging judicial entity of “statehood” was the allocation of farms which were unlimited in size to cultivate wheat to the free burghers by Van Riebeeck. Although Van Ghoens later limited this property ownership to only 13.5 morgen, the right to stay and make a living at the Cape under the guardianship of the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam and the VOC, with Van Riebeeck as their executive overseer at the Cape, confirms the possible birth of statehood via a permanent place of living at the Cape. Furthermore, these free burghers were taxed (but their land was free from land tax), as was done in most juridical entities worldwide. Van Riebeeck clearly activated the start-up process for the founding of a permanent colony at the Cape during his tenure, although he did it with some hesitation.12,31

Secondly, Jan van Riebeeck’s position as an executive (and the “government” of the Cape of Good Hope) was subordinated to the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam, the VOC and the Governor-General and Council of India, controlling all the Eastern possessions of the VOC from its headquarters at Batavia. Also to be taken into account were the overseeing powers of management by admirals of the VOC when visiting the Cape. This broad management system of inputs by various persons in service of the VOC clearly hampered the activation of a true regime of good leadership. An identifiable regime of leadership to serve as a permanent guideline for future leaders (commanders) failed to emerge. The sole powers of the Executive Commander of the Cape and his Council of Policy, the VOC’s initial business intentions and the constant challenging social and economic circumstances to deal with everyday matters, without sufficient empowerment to execute effective solutions by Van Riebeeck himself on his own initiative and thinking, brought to the foreground a clear differentiation between a temporary leader inside a system, which was nothing other than an autocracy defined from outside by governing bodies thousands of kilometers away. A system of a permanent regime of leadership, as found in a true democracy where all the inhabitants could make decisions on consensus, was absent here. This autocratic system, although improved over time with small “rights” to the free burghers, became internalized in the Capetonians’ mindset and formed the political thinking, planning and action at the Cape by the executive leaders as appropriate and correct (and was accepted by many of its inhabitants as “normal and correct”) for centuries to come.12,31

Thirdly, on the other hand, there were also the first signs of extreme handling of punishment for transgression of the Cape “Government’s” and the refreshment station’s rules, if needed, as imposed from the Netherlands authorities on subordinates outside the motherland. Again, here is a clearly identifiable sign of autocratic management, which undoubtedly became a permanent disposition in the first settlers’ mindsets and which was also transferred into the mindsets of the later proto-Afrikaners. For instance, Van Riebeeck as commander was empowered with a high level of juridical powers, such as being able to jail the inhabitants of the Cape for transgressing the legal guidelines prescribed by the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam, the VOC and the Governor-General and Council of India, which were all formulated on the rules of the State-General of the Netherlands. Van Riebeeck was even empowered to hand down the death penalty.12,31

He was instructed and empowered to militarily defend the Cape station against any hostile attacks, internal as well as external, without pre-permission from abroad. This independent empowerment shows the gradual rising of a unique juridical entity at the Cape, which was undoubtedly vested in the powers of an executive political leader to be able to handle certain tasks at his own discretion. Indeed, this was the beginning of a kind of a regime of leadership, although it should not necessarily be associated with good leadership.12,31

With regard to the reference to autocratic leadership executed by Van Riebeeck and instituted by the VOC, is it clear that Van Riebeeck, similar to South Africa’s present president, as well as the country’s previous presidents and prime ministers, was never democratically voted in as the first executive chief officer of the Cape (South Africa) by the population of the early Cape refreshment station. He was exclusively selected, appointed and paid by the VOC to act only on their behalf and interests. Though there seems to be a general satisfaction with Van Riebeeck’s direct behaviour as a leader to the employees of the VOC and free burghers – he, for instance, never enacted the strict legislation of the late 1600s or handed down the death penalty. He set free many persons from jail who showed good rehabilitation. It is clear that during Van Riebeeck’s time (1652 to 1662) at the Cape, there was no introduction of a regime of good leadership to the burghers or of the true reform of the Council of Policy to become a democratic law-making body from day one. Both the executive and legislative empowerments were centered in the hands of officials, with the free burghers in a nominal role. This absence of a true democracy awarded to every inhabitant of South Africa from 1652 onward, is a fact too long ignored by subjective Afrikaner political-historical writers, seemingly afraid to pinpoint a possible defective cognition, internalized through bad experiences and bad examples of delinquent leaders, or a congenital defect transferred to the Cape’s earlier European settlers by their European forefathers, and then to the later Afrikaners. What was needed, not so much to be enacted by Van Riebeeck alone, but mostly by the VOC and its associated foreign rulers of the Cape, was the enactment of a clear and definable regime of good leadership and governance that could form a system of permanence to be followed by Van Riebeeck’s successors through to today, to serve everybody, notwithstanding class, race, creed, or from Africa or Europe.12,31,40

In support of why Van Riebeeck did not immediately activate a sound governmental system, it must be mentioned that, when he landed at the Cape, he had with him precise instructions from the Council of Seventeen that were undoubtedly not so much the founding of a “governmental system” – that was a “secondary” outcome – but to adhere to his primary aim,namely the establishment of a refreshment station to supply produce for the VOC ships and to secure the Cape of Good Hope as a military stronghold against Britain, France and the Portuguese. The whole venture was treated “clinically” as a business enterprise, with a sole owner in charge, whose main intention was to oversee that his employees did their work for which they were compensated; nothing more. Moreover, it must be noted again that the station was not seen initially as a permanent settlement, and as such, it did not need a well rooted political and governmental system, as was practiced in the Netherlands or in the East Indies, already a VOC possession. “Governmental” referred at most to the maintenance of order and the Netherlands law amongst the more or less eighty soldiers who were installed to safeguard the station against internal (indigenous people) and foreign attacks. This secondary focus on a balanced “governmental system” by the VOC, is confirmed by the fact that the initial “Van Riebeeck government” setup changed very little during the VOC’s ownership up to 1795. There were, as indicated, improvements to the organization of the “political system” to exclusively benefit the VOC at the Cape, but these had little impact on the individual’s political rights.12,31

Economics, to be activated by the inhabitants, and not their practice of politics, was central in the late 1600s. But the two factors are inter-locked and it was foolish for the VOC as well as Van Riebeeck not to realize that, as the station became a settlement. Politics was going to claim its justified part, specially when the role of capitalism and private ownership and enterprise became dominant.37-40 Indeed, the table was laid by Van Riebeeck, unknowingly and possibly unwillingly, for South Africa’s tragical political history to be written, as the historian Professor Eric Walker writes12:13: “All the economic and social problems which exercise South Africa today had begun to take shape before Van Riebeeck’s eyes. For, in South Africa at least, there is nothing whereof it may be said, ’See, this is new’.’’

Van Riebeeck’s immediate point of focus was the building of a fort for protection of the inhabitants and the safeguarding of the freshwater source, to make a garden for fresh produce for the VOC ships, to establish good relations with the indigenous people and the instituting of a cattle trade with them. But this initiative was not a success from the beginning.12,31,40 Geen writes12:12: “… for four or five years the little settlement hovered on the brink of ruin in its capacity as a refreshment station for the victualling of Dutch ships going to and coming from the East Indies.”

Looking back to Van Riebeeck’s impact on the later racial disharmony of South Africa, there are clear contradictions in his “governmental” style on race relations. He never put a prohibition on race miscegenation between the European burghers, the Negro and Asiatic slaves and the KhoiKhoi. [The sad reliving of the racism of Carolus Linnnaeus (Carl von Linné) and his Systema Naturae came later in 1671 under the Commander IJsbrand Godske’s ruling with his Instruction, which officially began racism and discrimination in South Africa, undisturbed until 1994].4 But at the same time he practiced and allowed racial discrimination in the most extreme form with the introduction in 1658 of non-European (note: not European) slaves to the Cape: 170 slaves came from a captured Portuguese slave ship, while another 200 came from the Guinea Coast. Most of these first batch of slaves became the property of the VOC, although some where sold to free burgher farmers (for between ₤4 and ₤8 each!!). After Van Riebeeck’s departure the custom of the import of slaves was sped up in numbers. The slaves’ womanfolk became the central role players in miscegenation, so that before the end of the 1600s most of the slave children were “half-castes”, as Geen12 degradingly named them. This not only led to the creation of South Africa’s own Creole people, today’s so called Coloreds or Brown-Afrikaners (who number more than the White-Afrikaners), but also to the “infusing” of so called “Black” blood into the South African Whites’ “pure” bloodline; so much so that 75% of today’s Afrikaners may be “contaminated” by “Black” blood.4, 12,30,31,41

Van Riebeeck’s further siding against non-Whites at the Cape, in line with his views of non-Whites to be owned as slaves by the VOC, as well as the free burghers – and to buy and sell these slaves as “human livestock” – was his contribution to punitive actions against delinquent KhoiKhoi groups. The KhoiKhoi War (1658-1660) spells the first driving out of non-Whites, the KhoiKhoi, from their traditional lands in the Liesbeeck Valley. This was undoubtedly the first commision of White-terrorism to non-Whites in South Africa and land grabbing by Whites, as guided by the British definition on modern day terrorism, which reads42:9:

1) Violence against a person;

2) Serious damage to property;

3) Designed to influence a government or an international organization or to intimidate the public or a section of the public;

4) With the aim of advancing a political, religious, racial or ideological cause.

This pinpoints again the possibility of the internalization of a delinquent cognition into the mindsets of the early Europeans at the Cape (which formed the nucleus of the proto-Afrikaners and later Afrikaners) to do with the ease of infringing of human rights of non-Whites, as the Voortrekkers later did with their illegal occupation of the Transvaal and the Free State areas with terrorist actions a century later. Indeed, the so called White frontiersmen or Border Boers showed this terrorist behaviour on a large scale in the early 1700s, in the areas inside and outside the colony’s borders.4 This seemingly “normal” behaviour of aggressiveness and delinquency which Van Riebeeck allowed to be perpetrated on the KhoiKhoi, reflects back to what Boon15:75describes as political mobocracy, and brings about the question on the determinants and drivers behind the later Afrikaner-Nationalists’ Apartheid, as well as the place and the time of the learning of Apartheid’s wrongdoings.4,12 Professor Eric Walker’s postulation,, namely that all South Africa’s economic and social problems of today can be laid before Van Riebeeck’s “office door”, is not far fetched.12:13 Van Riebeeck, the first White “honest” cheater and state capturer

When studying the literature published by Afrikaner historical writers on the Afrikaners’ assumed heredity as a “nation”, starting with Jan van Riebeeck as their progenitor, it seems to be a very troubled one from the beginning. It declares possibly the beginning of the Afrikaners’ many deviating behaviours, the most well known to be Apartheid and the racial discrimination and domination of non-Whites.12.31

Undoubtedly Van Riebeeck was the first White official, in terms of his VOC instructions, to activate discrimination and the domination of non-Whites with his treatment at the Cape of the KhoiKhoi as well as the slaves. This troubling behaviour goes much deeper than merely rasism: it also seems to be the beginning and embedding of planned corruption, “boereverneukery” or “cheating of the farmers” and state capturing in the mindset of an executive leader at the Cape.12,31

Afrikaner historians treated Van Riebeek very gently on his delinquent behaviour, undoubtedly with great respect for his position as “Father of the Afrikaner Nation”, by offering all kinds of excuses and arguments with reference to his wrongdoings, basically to activate sympathy and to nullify said wrongdoing. Arguments to minimize the seriousness of his actions are: that he was “not the only official to commit transgressions and that others in higher positions did the same”, or that he, as many of the other officials guilty of delinquent and inappropriate behavior, “were forced to resort to these types of incomes” because of their underpayment by the VOC, and thus that he and others had to rely on delinquent behavior to make a living. The violation of the principle of honesty in this early behavior is in reality not very different from the allegations now laid at the door of Jacob Zuma and his cronies (and which have already led to Zuma’s recal and even possible prosecution and jailing). To argue that the comprehensiveness and intensity of the alleged mal-behaviour of Zuma are much more serious than that of Van Riebeeck, is inapplicable. Dishonesty is dishonesty, theft is theft, corruption is corruption, and nothing else. Top leaders must be treated the same as the lowest rank of citizen.4,12,13,18,31

Van Riebeeck’s delinquent actions already began before his appointment as commander at the Cape (Zuma’s alleged delinquent behaviour also started before his appointment as president). Van Riebeeck’s actions in generating a private income outside his position as commander at the Cape, undoubtedly reflect a clear line of the continuation of behaviour which can be associated with corruption and embezzlement until the end of his stay at the Cape (it is also alleged that Zuma committed the same inappropriate acts in his presidential capacity via state-capture).4,12,13,18,31

At this stage of the research in the evaluation of South Africa’s types of political leaders and its regime of leadership, from 1652 to 1795 in this study, four prominent questions are manifested:

  • If Van Riebeeck himself failed the test of honesty as the highest ranking official at the Cape, to what extent had he allowed his subordinates and cronies to commit inappropriate actions without reprimand and prosecution?
  • Did a culture of crooked political leaders and under par leadership become rooted in 1652 at the Cape, which had overflows into today’s South Africa?
  • Can any honest Afrikaner historian object to the postulation that the seed for today’s Nklandas, Zuptaism, corruption, nepotism, cronies and state-capture, which are rife at present in the politics of South Africa, was sown seemingly by the first executive leader in the capacity of Van Riebeeck’s personal opinion and practice of stretch values on what is morally and criminal correct and what is not correct?
  • Are there really differences in the personalities and modus operandi of Jan van Riebeeck and Jacob Zuma as leaders? Are there any fundamental differences in their executive ruling and governing of subordinates and the management of the purse of a country?

But, back to the behaviour of Jan van Riebeeck as a person, separate from his executive leadership as commander.

It seems as though Van Riebeeck presented himself as an honest and hard worker in the service of the VOC, especially in the last period of his stay in Tonkin, the city which had belonged to the Chinese and where the VOC opened a business entity in 1637. After the death of the under merchant and the departure of the paramount chief of the entity, Van Riebeeck was appointed in December 1645 as acting paramount chief of the station. This appointment was renewed in July in 1647, with Van Riebeeck promoted to the rank of merchant and secunde, and in status became the second person in the Council of Policy of Tonkin. Then, after applying to be appointed permanently in the position of paramount chief at Tonkin, the red light suddenly started to flicker for Van Riebeeck when it was referred to in his application evaluation that he can not be trusted seeing that he was involved in unauthorized “particular trade” (the precise meaning of “particular” is unclear, but it seems to be corruption and self-conceit by the generating of an illegal income via trade besides his salary and in competition with the VOC). He was basically fired from his appointment as merchant in Tonkin in 1647. As punishment he also lost his salary for two months and seven days and was sent back to the Netherlands. On his way back to the Netherlands, his ship the DE Coningh van Polen, stopped for eighteen days at the undeveloped Cape, giving him an idea of the Cape and its surroundings (and this possibly caused his application five years later for the post of commander at the Cape). Back in the Netherlands his various appeals to the Council of Seventeen to nullify his sentence were unsuccessful, while no further new appointment was offered. This shows the seriousness of his delinquent behaviour. In December of 1651, four years after his sacking, he was appointed again by the VOC as commander to establish the refreshment station at the Cape. This position, it seems, offered less opportunities for temptation to practice “particular” activities or other dishonesty and was clearly of a lower rank as that of paramount chief of Tonkin.12,31

It has been confirmed that Van Riebeeck showed a love for “particular trade” by the fact that he also allocated a farm to himself and farmed as a second income to his salary as commander (as one Afrikaner historian mentioned: “because this was the only way an official could supplement his small income at the Cape because the opportunity for particular trade was totally absent”). This is a very crooked view, well in line with the ANC’s top-brass saying they are forced to theft, corruption, nepotism and self-conceit in the New South Africa, because Apartheid disqualified them from making money before 1994!). But Van Riebeeck’s self-enrichment goes deeper – he undoubtedly made a profit in competition with the free burgher farmers whose interests he had to promote at all times. (He became the judge and prosecutor for sentencing and punishment of the free burghers; a punishment, which he seemed to be free from in his farming actions). His farming endeavours surely meant further loss of direct income for the VOC. Without doubt these farming activities of VOC officials at the Cape were frowned upon, seeing that the VOC prohibited it in 1668. Regarding the size of Van Riebeek’s farm the following data is reflected from the records of 1659: 84 morgen were cultivated of which Jan Reijniers and Hendrik Boom owned respectively 11 and 10 morgen, while the VOC owned 46 morgen and Van Riebeeck himself kept 101 morgen. Commissioner Rijkloff van Ghoens, during his visit from the 17th March to the 19th April 1657 at the Cape, also seems to have awarded Van Riebeeck some land to plant fruit trees. This property was situated behind Lion’s Head, and he exchanged it for property southeast of the Windberg (Wind Mountain), calling it Bosheuvel. Here he planted 1,200 plants including grapes which he obtained from the VOC’s garden and started to produce his first wine from 1659. Van Riebeeck also imported a variety of fruit trees and other plants for his farming on Bosheuvel from the Netherlands, East and West India, Japan, Madagascar, Mauritius and St Helena, which seems to be an expensive exercise for a poor official. He had undoubtedly become a well established farmer in his ten years at the Cape, seemingly generating a sideline income which made up for his lack of opportunity to practice “particular trade’’, as he apparently did easily and without remorse at Tonkin, as well as at the Cape!12,31,40

That Van Riebeeck handled his “Cape particular activities” with great discretion without annoying or estranged the inhabitants, is clearly evident from the fact that the first petition (one of many to follow about farming conditions, including later dissatisfaction with the Van der Stels) in December 1658 by the most influential farmers of the Cape to the VOC, never accused him of self-conceit, corruption or nepotism.12,31

Looking back in retrospect to Van Riebeeck’s various forms of practicing “particular” trade, either in Tonkin, China or at the Cape, the temptation is great to not say that Van Riebeeck introduced South Africa to its first Nklanda and state capture. What prevented Van Riebeeck from not overstepping his authority and getting more active in any form of “corruption” was possibly the small population of officials and free burghers at the Cape. (In 1659 the total White population was 144). His choice of a circle of intimate friends and cronies within the more or less 144 inhabitants was undoubtedly limited, making the opportunity for serious craft small in fear of a backlash by outsiders for overstretching his powers by self-conceit and dishonesty.4,12,31

Van Riebeeck was always assumed to be an executive leader with “clean hands” at the early Cape, notwithstanding a tendency to continuously practice “particular trade”. This is a worrying phenomenon and one which laid the bad example that wrongdoing works and is a payable venture, and already jeopardizes the establishment in the 1660s of an acceptable regime of leadership. The well planned and well executed “particular actions” of the two Van der Stels, the father Simon and the son Willem Adriaan, governors from 1662 to 1707 at the Cape, will be an eye-opener for the most consciousness Nationalist Afrikaner about their proud “clean and honest” Afrikaner heritage. These early happenings also make the present day Zuma debacle around poor leaders and a regime of under par leadership, to a certain extent, explicable and understandable.12,13,18,31

3.3.2 Leaderships and regimes of the Agricultural Colony of the Cape (1662-1679)

To better understand the Van Riebeeck regime and the autocratic “governmental system” practiced at the Cape from 1652 (which gradually became an accepted way to be ruled and to rule at the Cape), as well as the beginning of racism, it is also important to note that already in the time of Van Riebeeck the differences between Whites and non-Whites at the Cape became more and more prominent. This negative situation flowed into the leadership of his followers, starting with Zacharias Wagener (Wagenaar) to Hendrik Crudorp and to be addressed by Simon van der Stel when he accepted the Cape’s leadership in 1679. This outcome required not only special abilities and skills, but also special behaviour and actions by Van Riebeeck and the later commanders/governors. Particularly troubling was the behaviour of the KhoiKhoi as non-members of the Cape refreshment station, as well as the influx of more and more slaves. These were points of focus. Both non-White groups were, similar to the Whites, without direct voting rights, but also without the official status and rights which the White officials and burghers enjoyed. Where the Whites enjoyed property rights and could present petitions to the authorities in the Netherlands about their problems, these two groups were discriminated against outright from day one: the slaves became property of the VOC and burghers, and were deprived of basic human rights, while the KhoiKhoi, living as independent persons outside the borders of the station, were used as labourers in terms of the wishes and labour practices of the Whites. Clear or defined work or burgher rights were totally absent for non-Whites, and there were no powers of speech or petition. “Apartheid” in its basic form was introduced and undoubtedly became a new inherent part of the permanent regime of the young and under par leadership at the Cape (and spread into the later South Africa).4,12,40

Two other developments which are prominent around the judicial status of the refreshment station – and its immediate regime of leadership – were respectively the extention of the empowerment of the Council of Policy and the legal change in the status of the station from a temporary enterprise (rooted in foreign soil outside the Netherlands and managed by the VOC) to a legal permanent foreign colony. This shift in the juridical status from a station to a colony is well illustrated by the fact that new migrants to the Cape had to take the Oath of Allegiance of the State-General, the Prince of Orange and the VOC. This happening is historically of enormous significance and can be seen as the first juridical founding of South Africa, a legal thread spreading into the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 2018. In 1691 the status of the commander was uplifted to that of governor, with much more executive political empowerment than a commander. The first person to be appointed in this capacity was Simon van der Stel, who was already appointed in 1679 as a commander. Many see this as the conferring of the unofficial status of the “first president” of the Republic of South Africa on Simon van der Stel and not on Jan van Riebeeck.12,40

With regard to the Council of Policy, this body also became more officially organized and statutorily applicable to the norms associated with a “government” when, from 1685 it consisted of the commander, the secunde, the fiscal who was a law official with duties similar to a public prosecutor, three senior merchants of the VOC (the chief salesman, the bookkeeper and the treasurer) and two military officers. The powers of the council were the executive and the legislative. It could decide on all the issues of governance and its resolutions (as proclamations or placaaten) which became Cape laws as long they were in line with the Roman-Dutch Law and the Statutes of the Council of India. A High Court was introduced, consisting of seven members of the council, together with three representatives of the free burghers nominated by the governor for a year. This body was empowered to hear cases and to do sentencing, but was subjected to the right of appeal to the Council of India. The Court’s other duties were attending to the roads, to advise on problems around the burghers, to fix the selling prices of the burghers’ produce to the VOC, etc. Another three legal bodies created in 1682 were the Court of Commissioners to try petty cases at Cape Town, in 1676 the Matrimonial Court and in 1764 the Orphan Chamber. In 1689 an independent fiscal was appointed, independent of the powers of the governor, with responsibility to only the Council of Seventeen in the Netherlands. His task was to track and find VOC officials engaged in illegal private trading. This appointment was seen by many inhabitants as one of activating corruption and nepotism without really solving the illegal trade of officials. He also activated a power play with the governor which led many times to direct conflict with the governor, while the free burghers saw him as a part of the corrupt VOC.12,40

The reason for the change of the Cape refreshment station to the Agricultural Colony of the Cape was the outbreak of war between the Netherlands and England and the possibility of an attack by England and France on the Cape. This new world political situation seriously endangered the East-Indian ocean lane of the VOC. This new strategy position of the Cape transferred it without any counter argument into a permanent juridical entity to defend the Cape. To overcome the costs of a much needed garrison of soldiers for defense, the Council of Policy believed that a settled civil population could do service as part-time soldiers in times of conflict, and minimize the cost of a large garrison at the Cape. This end result could be obtained through more migrants and a permanent colony, making the positions of the commanders/governors at the Cape comprehensive in leadership and governance responsibilities. The fact that the refreshment station overcome a multitude of obstacles in five years’ time and was successful in producing fruit, vegetables and meat, surely reflects good leadership. But in perspective, so far this leadership was already autocratic in its political power recognition and steering, and extremely racially oriented to exclusively benefit the VOC and to a great extent also only the White population. A regime of good leadership, to be in-corporated in a permanent leadership and governance set up for all the people of the Cape (and to lay the foundation for a non-racial and democratic South Africa of the future), was again absent.12,31,40

The fact of an incoming permanent, unchallengeable Whiteness at the Cape already in the mid-1600s, is well illustrated by the building of the Castle to defend the station against the French and the British. The first stones were laid on the 2nd of January 1665 by Zacharias Wagener. The stalwart Afrikaner historian, Dr GD Scholtz, describes in 1953, during the rising of DF Malan and his doctrine of the Afrikaners, the “historical Afrikaner landmark” of the building of the Castle in 1665, confirming the proto-Afrikaner’s uniqueness and supremacy as a European in Africa, as follows43:33: “In how many intimate ways the common lot of the Cape was connected to that of the White outer world is illustrated by a poem which was especially written about this occasion” (Own translation):

Soo worden voort en voort de rijcken uijt gespreit,

Soo worden al de swart en geluwen (geel) gespreijt,

Soo dat men uijtter aerd eene steene wal opbrechten,

Daer ’t donderend metael seer wijnigh van ophechten,

Voor Hottentoosen waren ‘t altijts eerde wallen,

Nu komt men hier met steen voor anderen ook brallen,

Dus maekt men dan een schrick soowel d’European,

Als voor den Aes, Amer! En wilden Africaen. The Godske instruction of 1671

The role of LJsbrand Godske (1672-1676) in bringing down the curse of racism, and the dividing of the people of South Africa into peoples (Black and White), needs to be highlighted. It is clear that there is very little difference between him and the later DF Malan and his Apartheid.4

The Dutch settlement of Van Riebeeck was marked by intimate social association and miscegenation between the different races, including the slaves (Indian-Malaysians and Blacks from Madagascar). In 1658 slaves started to arrive from Malaysia and other places, and indigenous people such as the KhoiKhoi and sometimes the KhoiSan entered slavery as well. The system of free burghers at the Cape in 1657 changed the society and workforce from strictly controlled VOC officials and employees and the practice of conservative European lifestyles, to that of private entrepreneurs, characterized by a much less rigid behavioural code from the VOC’s moral restrictions, such as the prohibitions on social association and intermixing with other races. The shortage of female citizens stimulated social interaction and miscegenation between White free burghers and other racial groups. Racial mingling progressed so fast that 75% of all the children born to slave women between 1650 and 1670, had White fathers.4,6,9,10,30

The narrow minded Calvinistic autocratic local ruler of the Cape, the VOC, quickly restricted this social interaction and miscegenation between White free burghers and other racial groups. An official instruction in 1671 from the commissioner (who also acted as commander from 1672-1676) Isbrand Godske, prohibited sexual intercourse between Whites and slaves, while the Council of Policy also forbade extramarital sexual intercourse between White men and young slave women in 1678. This was followed by a prohibition on marriages and extramarital sexual relations between Whites and freed slaves in 1685. The focus of racial discrimination was initially on foreign peoples (slaves of Indian-Malaysian origin and Blacks from Madagascar) and other indigenous people like the KhoiKhoi. It seems as though indigenous Blacks, like the Xhosas, were not initially included in the South African racial discrimination that started in 1671. Indigenous Black assimilation only started around 1730 with the first contact between the proto-Afrikaners and the Xhosas on the borders of the Cape Colony.4,6,9,10,30

Louw writes that4:62:

The racial discrimination described above, exclusively based on skin colour and officially recorded in 1671 with the Godske instruction, can be regarded as the first apartheid law of South Africa. Godske was the first White proponent of organized racial discrimination, eventually against all people of colour. However, this discrimination seemed to adhere to a view where ethnicity is seen in terms of class, meaning that the poor, and therefore to a certain extent the underdeveloped non-Whites at the Cape, were regarded as having a lower socio-economical standing and as “untouchables.” The slaves especially were stripped of their human rights and dignity and their financial and personal independence. They were impoverished. Also, the initial problems with the behaviour of the first slaves in 1658 and the Hottentots in terms of work and social habits and aggressiveness already manifested from 1652. This contributed further to levels of social differentiation and discrimination between certain sectors of the White community and other racial groups in general (specifically guided and practiced officially by the Cape authority). It is in this context that the VOC implemented a strict policy of separation between Whites and the other races such as the slaves, Hottentots and Blacks from 1671. Later the Xhosas, with whom the Whites started to make contact in 1730, were included. This was extended to all Blacks and to all other races in South Africa from the 1850s onwards, especially in the republics of the Transvaal and the Free State. The year 1671 can therefore be considered the beginning of socio-controlled racial manipulation and engineering in South Africa, specifically with the aim of Whites limiting and managing the personal and group rights of all other racial groups in some way.

Racial discrimination, based on skin colour, was thus legally established in South Africa in 1671 by the VOC. It was managed from the Netherlands, and not initially by the White incumbents. Notwithstanding this early legal discrimination, illegal clandestine relationships and illegitimate relations between the different races still continued in South Africa, right up to 1994, when the Immorality Act, which legally prohibited sexual relations and miscegenation between Whites and non-Whites, was struck off the law books.

As already reflected in the early learning and internalization of “bad” behaviour into the mindsets of the proto-Afrikaners and later the Afrikaners, the majority of the early Cape Whites were not only introduced to statutory racial discrimination and domination by the authorities from 1652 onwards, but also became acclimatized to racial discrimination due to the formal human and political wrongdoings of the authorities towards other races. On this impact and its outcome, Louw writes 4:63:

Formal discrimination became internalized in the thinking of the proto-Afrikaners as “normal and correct” and this was strengthened by the many benefits that the system brought them. The immediate result was that they started to practice discrimination themselves on a continuous and extreme basis.4,17,18

Besides Godske’s negative impact on racism, Van Riebeeck’s seven immediate successors’ impacts on the Cape’s executive leadership with regard to good governance and the establishment of a regime of democracy, were minimal (their sojourns in the post of commander were on average two years in duration).33

These commanders were33:

3.3.3 Simon van der Stel (1679-1699)

After the fast succession of various commanders, and their failing to build constructively on Van Riebeeck’s leadership’s initiative and the creation of a much needed regime of leadership, Simon van der Stel was appointed on the 12th of October 1679 as commander. Van der Stel fast became one of the most prominent executive leaders of the Cape Colony during the Dutch reign. His more liberal policies initially towards the White inhabitants were extraordinary, bringing about an improvement of their financial circumstances and some political benefits for the White free burghers. He also activated some “self-management” for the new countryside of the Stellenbosch region by the establishment in 1682 of a Court of Heemraden, consisting of four members. Although this body’s duties and powers were initially vague, it seems as though it was meant to solve small differences and conflicts between the burghers of Stellenbosch. With time it was allocated more managerial empowerment until it was replaced by the Court of Magistrates and Heemraden to manage the countryside more effectively. During his appointment of 20 years (1679-1699) colonization was speeded up, as well as the enlargement of the colony’s borders into the countryside. Notable for his time in power was that the price of wheat rose and the labour problem was to a great extent solved by the import of more slaves (a decision which worsened the already existing division between Whites and non-Whites in terms of justified human, social and economic rights, further sinking the hopes for a balanced interracial and non-racial regime of good leadership for the new colony). Although there was still not a full democratic government, selected by the burghers for the Cape Colony, and there was serious discrimination against non-Whites, making a regime of good leadership null and void, Van der Stel’s overall behaviour and outputs as chief executive for the VOC, is described as a that of a dynamic leader inside the VOC’s autocratic ruling of the Cape Colony. But the basis for this praise is the profits and “goodness” which he brought about for the VOC, and not necessarily to the free burghers or the non-Whites. These appraisals by the VOC are well reflected by the fact that he was promoted by the Council of Policy in 1691 to the rank of governor and was in 1692 also awarded the high rank of Extraordinary Counsel to the Council of India (Extraordinaris Raad van Indië).12,40

During the visit of Commissioner Hendrik Adriaan van Rheede in 1685, an official only answerable to the Council of Seventeen and whose instruction was to rehabilitate the ailing VOC, he, to a great extent, agreed with Van der Stel’s actions and ruling. Certain improvements of the “government” of the colony were introduced by Van Rheede: the enlargement of the Council of Policy to eight officials; two additional seats for free burghers selected for one year were created on the High Court of Justice; a permanent landdrost was pointed at Stellenbosch to watch over the VOC interests and to act as chairman of the Court of Heemraden. The form of local government inaugurated by Van der Stel seems to have been a great success and remained part of the Cape Government for a century and a half.12,40

Van Rheede brought about improvements for the nearly 300 slaves at the Cape. The punishment of slaves was restricted to be authorised by the government; half-breed slaves could obtain their freedom on reaching the age of twenty-five for men and twenty-one for women; negroes born in the Cape could also ask for freedom on attaining the age of forty years of age and the payment of nearly ₤9 on the condition of good character, having a knowledge of Dutch and professing Christanity. In addition, marriages between Whites and Blacks were forbidden, but it was allowed for a White to marry a half-caste. In addition, slave children, many of mixed breed, were to be taught reading and writing in terms of Christian education. Van Rheede’s request that officials be allowed to farm was refused, although Van der Stel himself was allowed to keep his farm, Constantia. During Van der Stel’s time the first batch of Protestant Huguenots (1688-1689) arrived and were placed at Drakenstein, Frans Hoek and Paarl. The French people fast became a “problem” for Van der Stel, primarily because of their open resistance against his autocratic government.12,40

It is clear that although there seemed to be an improvement in “government” processes during Van der Stel’s reign, a democratic foundation was still, as with Van Riebeeck’s reign, absent. Although the slaves’ situation improved, these unfortunate people were still slaves without real human rights and dignity, and in general they were still commodities to be sold like livestock.12

The finance and economics of the Cape Colony did not always fare well under Van der Stel, as a result of poor prices for produce, many trading restrictions and the presence of corruption and nepotism. The illicit and lucrative cattle trade with the KhoiKhoi by the free burgher farmers fast established the Trekboers (Travelling Boers) and their trekking beyond the colonial frontier (named the frontiersmen). People its seem can not always be controlled by the law and traditional conventions. Prominent were their racism and their love for the cheap slaves’ labour to help run their farms. Many of these Boers and their descendants eventually became the Voortrekkers, who numbering between 10, 000 and 14, 000, later made the Great Trek away from the British rule.12

It seems that Simon van der Stel from the start as governor played the prominent role of a good man of integrity who cared intensely for the VOC and the inhabitants of the Cape Colony. General historical reviews by Afrikaner writers of van der Stel referred to him as a man of great importance in South Africa’s history, in that he stands symbolicly head and shoulders above all of his predecessors, that he was very able and competent, hard-working and very trustworthy. But was he really that trustworthy and good in terms of integrity? Literature by some Afrikaner historians, similar to much other emotion laden research on the Afrikaners in general, finds that they contradicted themselves many times on these “good”, “honest” and “trustworthy” characteristics. Critically analyzing data shows that the basis to his character’s malfunction seems to be anchored in corruption, state-capture, nepotism and outright dishonesty, no matter how much historians try to mask it behind his so called good administration capacities.12,40

What was the root of Simon van der Stel’s crookedness? Simply put: the liking and love of and the desire for immense earthly material belongings. The ownership of immense (and beautiful) material belongings seems to have totally possessed his mind at the end, overshadowing his so-called sound cognitive thinking, alleged wisdom and integrity as an executive leader. This contamination also spread to be a bad example of excellence, and, similar to Van Riebeeck’s self-conceit in 1652 to 1662, a failing to cement a foundation for the establishment of a regime of good leadership between the years 1679 and 1699.12,40

This process of Simon van der Stel’s possession by self-conceit and a down-spiraling into corruption began in 1685 with three clear events. In 1685, Commissioner HA Rheede, as compensation for Van der Stel’s service of excellence to the VOC (an action of giving against the guidelines of the VOC which was already forbidden in 1668), presented him with a large farm, called Constantia. In 1691 his rank was promoted from commander to governor and in 1692 he was elevated to the high rank of Extraordinary Counsel of India. These glorified actions from the side of the VOC made him very important, basically untouchable by the inhabitants at the Cape. It set him more and more on a road where he could willingly ignore the opinions of the inhabitants and do just what he pleased, right or wrong. But more seriously, it seems as though this position of “high-standing in the VOC regime” psychologically triggered a dormant disposition in Simon van der Stel’s mindset, activating dishonesty and grandiose thinking and behaviour.12,40

Although South African historians constantly tried over the years to argue that his farming activities did not interfere with his task as governor, or that his farming activities did not handicap the farming activities and profits of the farmers, it shows that Van der Stel lost more and more interest in the Cape Colony’s administration and that he spent increasing time on Constantia. To say further that his farming did not interfere with that of the farmers because they “still had a market for their produce”, is historically misleading: he competed with his great harvests directly with the farmers at the markets, influencing prices in terms of supply and counter-supply in times of over-supply. To further argue historically that Simon van der Stel’s only mishap was that he was a bad example of leadership for his son Willem, who followed him as governor, is absurd and untrue. Of course he was a bad example, not only for Willem, but for all the inhabitants of the colony.12,40

Van der Stel, a strong Netherlands-Nationalist, also reflects ethnic discrimination in addition to racial discrimination. The focus of his discrimination was the French Huguenots who arrived between 1688 and 1700 at the Cape, a group he clearly was not fond of and openly distrusted as citizens, disliking their language and culture. This delinquent ethnic action of his is well illustrated by refusing them the founding of their own church congregation and council at Drakenstein and issuing a strict warning to them to behave at the Cape. The denationalization of the Huguenots and the phasing out of French as a church and school language, are strongly associated with Simon van der Stel. An appeal to the Council of Seventeen in 1690 by the Huguenots to found their own church at Drakenstein, was successful, although certain pre-requirements were put forth by the Council of Seventeen. This outcome for the first time turned the situation against Van der Stel’s completely autocratic behaviour to many of the Cape inhabitants, and slowly started to set the stage for his departure as governor and the end of his corrupt leadership. This was denied by Nationalist-Afrikaner historians for many years. His resignation as governor in 1699 was by free will, but the odds were against him and it was possibly a well timed decision before the tide could turn against him, even by his cronies and cadres in the VOC.12,40

Van der Stel Senior’s corruption and nepotism lived forth, not only in a failed regime of under par leadership left behind, but in his ability to activate the selection process of his son Willem as his successor as governor, who unfortunately was even more corrupt than he was. The evil of men live after them – in Simon van der Stel’s case, William Shakespeare was so very correct!12,40

The racial intentions reflected by Van der Stel, especially those against the KhoiKhoi, which rest on outright distrust, also caused the further deteriation between Black and White and social isolation. It undermined any hope for the establishment of a regime of leadership where racial inferiority, separation, discrimination and domination are absent and where all the segments of the population are happy with the leadership and accept it.12,40

It is clear that Simon van der Stel’s corruption, nepotism and self-enrichment were well masked. This vicious circle of good masking can be seen in the fact that his networking of intimate friends, cronies and officials was possibly much greater and better organized than that of Van Riebeeck. In addition, the Cape’s population was much larger in the 1680s (in 1688 it was 573 persons), with more widespread interests of their own and less involvement with the executive leader of the VOC as in the time of Van Riebeek. Van der Stel’s self-enrichment, which can seldom be dismantled from corruption and nepotism, no matter how well it was covered up, seems to be reflected in line with the present day alleged schemes of self-enrichment and criminal cover ups of Zuma.13,16,18,40

3.3.4 Willem Adriaan van der Stel, the capable Zuptoid (1699-1707)

Simon van der Stel was followed in 1699 as governor by his son Willem. Willem is praised in that during his appointment, he brought about significant change and improvement to the farming sector, extened the borders of the colony and offered farms to the growing migrants. But regarding his direct and openly benefitting the officials of the Cape Colony’s Administration (who called themselves the “wedlock children” of the VOC and the colonists the “illegitimate children” of the VOC) – would today be described as nepotism and cronies-capturing – criminal behaviour. The colonists were increasingly wronged by him on various levels: his constant and growing self-enrichment, today better know as corruption, fraud and state-capture. He fast demonstrated under par leadership characteristics, blocking any hope of improving on Simon van der Stel’s and Jan van Riebeeck’s input to obtain some level or kind of a regime of good leadership and good governance. This unsatisfactory executive leadership reflected by Willem van der Stel goes much deeper and is evidence of an in-depth lack of integrity of character, the shameless promotion of corruption, nepotism, theft and mal-government by Whites at the Cape.12,40

Geen describes his few “good” and many “bad” qualities as an executive political leader, as follows12:18:

Willem Adriaan van der Stel, whose governship was to prove the stormiest in the rule of the Dutch East India Campany at the Cape, owed his appointment in the first instance to the directors’ approval of the work his father had done in the colony. He had been born in Batavia and, after many years in the service of the Company in its eastern possessions, had been made a magistrate at Amsterdam. He was a man of some ability and enterprise, who in the few years he was at the Cape settled the Land of Waveren, sent an expedition to Natal in search of timber, imported better breeds of sheep and tried, though without success, to start a silk industry. But the good that he did has been overshadowed naturally enough by his quarrel with the colonists, which came to a head in 1706 and was due in no small measure to certain defects of character that van der Stel had developed in the Company’s service in the East, where corruption was rife.; and

In view of the stir that the agitation against the governor created in the little colony, it is as well to consider the causes of the dispute, which show that corruption was as prevalent at the Cape as elsewhere in the Company’s empire, though naturally on a smaller scale.

Willem van der Stel is frequently praised in the South African history books as the person who activated successful stock breeding and farming as an industry, who influenced the colony’s economy positively and began the enlargment of the borders of the Cape Colony to include regions like Tulbagh. But within this capturing of improvement, Willem was, as his corrupt father Simon before him, also fast gobbled up by his psychological disposition of large scale corruption, nepotism, autocracic ruling, and the cover-up of his tracks of criminality, self-enrichment and outright fraud. It seems that he fast built up an intimate group of even more corrupt officials and burghers than himself to effectively promote his interests and safeguard his back for backlashes from the inhabitants as well as the VOC, that could topple him. In reality, Jan van Riebeeck and Simon van der Stel were dwarfs in comparison to the wrongdoing of the giant of crooked activity, Willem van der Stel.12,40

As in most crimes, criminality cannot be maintained indefinitely and the culprit is brought to order in the end and called to be accountable (although accountability is sometimes super-physical and time consuming, as is demonstrated by the ten years of going scot-free of Jacob Zuma). In Willem van der Stel’s case accountability was fast brought to reality. (Is it from Willem’s case that Julius Malema of the EFF coined his striking phrase: It is time to pay back). Only eight years into his reign (1699-1707), Van der Stel was successfully stopped in his tracks from serious further wrongdoing.12,40

Soon after his appointment, Willem van der Stel started to do mega-farming, notwithstanding that the Council of Seventeen had in 1688 forbidden it, as well as decreeing in 1699 that officials could not own farms and farm on a great scale. (It seems that he had successfully hidden his farm and farming activities from the eyes of the VOC for years). But nepotism and corruption, in the case of Van der Stel, already ran deep by the illegal donation of a farm of 400 morgen in Hottentots-Holland to him by Commissioner Wouter Valkenier. To keep other officials happy, possibly also Willem’s intimate friends, various other officials received farms. Secunde Sameul Elsevier, the bailiff Johan Blesius and the reverend Petrus Kalden, all received large farms, while officials of lesser status, like the magistrates Starrenburg, De Wet en Ten Damme, received sixty morgen. These officials received in total more than half so much as all the colonists put together. This subdivision of property, allocated to cronies in his office, was well-planned to divert the attention from Willem as a transgressor of the 1688 and 1699 prohibitions. A direct outcome was that Willem as well as others stayed away from their offices for long periods, as did his co-farming officials.12,40

In 1703 Van der Stel continued his nepotism, corruption and stealing from the VOC by the donation of 117 morgen to his crony, Jan Hartog, and then bought it back as his property to enlarge his original farm. He fast developed the farm, today knows as Vergelegen, by building a beautiful homestead and extensive outbuildings, while the farm was intensively cultivated. In a short time he cultivated 61.5 morgen under grapes, counting more than 500,000 stocks with the potential to deliver six hundred leaguer of wine per annum. These 500,000 stocks represented a quarter of the total stocks of the colony. His wheat harvest represented 1,100 muids (bags) of the total 4,331 muids harvested in 1705 to 1706 at the Cape. He also began to intensively farm with livestock, which included hundreds of cattle and thousands of sheep, especially in the present day Caledon, where no other farmer was allowed to farm.12,40

To farm his land and carry out other labour he bought more than 200 slaves, a workforce allegedly supported by more than 100 VOC slaves and more or less sixty White menial servants paid by the VOC. Furthermore, he obtained building material from the VOC stores seemingly without paying for it. He also forced the colonists to transport these materials to his farm without any compensation. The farming of Willem and his officials soon started to endanger the farming incomes of the colonist farmers. These farming officials also started to manipulate the markets, creating monopolies and assured sole benefits to them in the selling and pricing of their produce. Van der Stel Junior even began to manipulate the awarding of the wine leases in 1705, by awarding them to a listed criminal friend of his, a man named Phijffer. The farmers objected fiercely and prepared a petition to be sent to the Council of Seventeen in the Netherlands, describing the corruption of Van der Stel and his cronies, reporting about the bribes they had to pay to him for normal services as well as other wrongdoings. (This was the second petition: in 1705 a petition was sent to the Higher Government in India, but all that happened was that the body asked on 1706 that Van der Stel must answer to the allegations).

In blocking any effort to unmask him, Willem van der Stel showed his corrupt mindset.12,40 First he activated a petition himself which portrayed him as an honest, hard-working and religious man, as well as a good executive leader working exclusively for the benefits of the colonists. To obtain signatures for his petition he invited and treated all Capetonians to the Castle. Here he dropped his discrimination inclination to a certain extent by inviting the lower social and worker classes, such as labourers, slaves, and traders such as fishermen! Moreover, he sent the magistrate Starrenburg into the country to obtain further signatures to favour him, but with very little success. In the end he obtained 240 signatures to back up his case, seemingly from lower class farmers, slaves and even exiles, while the chances were also good that some signatures were forgeries.40

Secondly, Willem van der Stel did the same flip-flop as is done by most autocrats and crooks when time starts to run out for them. Van der Merwe40 compiled the following on his autocratic behaviour40:81-82:

He arrested the leader of the petitioners, Adam Tas, and from his documents Van der Stel became aware of the full contents of the second petition, especially the accusations against him, as well as the names of the inner circle of the petitioners;

He arrested some of the 63 petitioners on charges of sedition and rebellion and decided to send five to Amsterdam to defend themselves there on these charges, which Van der Stel believed the HERE XVII would hold against them;

Then he appointed a commission from the Council of Justice to prosecute the leaders of the movement against him. His intention was to persuade through these kind of threats to stop further actions against him. To cover up his wrongdoing and to steer an outcome in his favour, he appointed all the officials accused in the petition to serve on the commission while a colonist loyal to him was to represent the colonists;

The magistrate Starrenburg was appointed as prosecutor, and not as required the fiscal whose work it was to act as public prosecutor;

Van der Stel hid his direct involvement in the proceedings well by not taking a seat on the bench. Indeed, he was still manipulating the proceedings and the outcome of the prosecution by sitting in a room next to the court and where he was constantly consulting Starrenburg;

The hearings of the accused were separated and they were brought one by one before the bank. First they were asked to change their minds in favour of Van der Stel. If they failed to offer a testimony in favour of Van der Stel, they were taken back to the cells. If a prisoner after a certain time still refused to recall his views on the governor, he was threatened with being locked up in the “Donker Gat” (Dark Hole) in the Castle, an underground space without any light or fresh air which was well known for its fast and devastating effect on the health. Threats were further used such as the withholding of food (only water and bread), to use the pain rack or to be banned to Mauritius. (Indeed, some accused were held for weeks in unhealthy cells before confessing, three were sent to the “Donker Gat”, while two of the accused were already on a ship to Mauritius before confessing);

Van der Stel rewote these confessions of the accused and styled them to favour his honesty, before the HERE XVII saw them, and sent them to the Netherlands with his own defence as well as a declaration on the delinquent behaviour of the accused. Pay-up time, Mister Willem van der Stel!

But the writing was on the wall for Willem Adriaan van der Stel. Unbeknownst to him was the second petition of the colonists, sent in secret with one of the ships of the same fleet to the Netherlands. It was one of the ships that carried Van der Stel’s own petition and other evidence against the colonists, as well as the five leaders of the “rebellion”.12,40

So assured of the cover-up of his “good case” was Van der Stel, that he merely continued his prosecution of “delinquent” colonists, under the guidance of magistrate Starrenburg. But public resistance became strong, with many colonists ignoring requests of assistance for food delivery or to appear before the court.12,40

At Amsterdam in the Netherlands things went badly wrong for Van der Stel, and a situation manifested that he did not expect and for which he was totally unprepared. But this was not a sudden insight in the mindsets of the directors of the Council of Seventeen of Amsterdam – indeed they were well informed by various other petitions bemoaning the growing criminality in the mindset and actions of Willem van der Stel and his cronies. All that they were waiting for was the return fleet from the East to bring documentation with more clear information. The Council of Seventeen stepped in fast and offered judgment in favour of the colonists. The end result was that Governor Willem van der Stel, Secunde Samuel Elsevier, Reverend Petrus Kalden and Magistrate Starrenburg were fired and recalled to the Netherlands, while the banned colonists were brought back to the Cape at the cost of the VOC. In addition, all colonists in prison at the Cape were set free and all the charges against the colonists laid by Willem Van der Stel and his official cronies, were recalled. The material possessions of Willem Van der Stel, which he obtained by crooked means, were confiscated from him – his farm was divided into four sections and it, with its buildings, sold publically. Van der Stel’s monopolies of the wine and meat trade were nullified.12,40

Willem Van der Stel failed outright, not only as executive leader in 1707, but he was one of the greatest failures as a leader so far in the South African history. But this failure goes deeper: it completely devastated any remnants left by Jan van Riebeeck and Simon van der Stel of a kind of a regime of leadership and an example of governance to guide future leaders in the then South African history still to be made. If there was until that time some kind of a regime of leadership, even at the lowest levels, it was totally erased from the mindsets of the upcoming politicians of the 1700s, officials of status as well as that of most of its colonists at the Cape.12,40

3.3.5 Period 1707 to 1795 under the VOC

Subsequent to the departure of Willem van der Stel, basically nothing changed in the way of ruling at the Cape Colony. The population was growing, although at a slow pace. In 1700 the number was 458 adult colonists, while a decade later there were 656. Indeed, from 1707 the VOC, guided by the Council of Seventeen, reverted to their original policy of not supporting immigration, which led thereto that in the 18th Century immigration became a small stream. Stock farming also started to accelerate, forcing the necessity for more land. A nomadic kind of stock farming began, away from the Cape, in the countryside. Indeed the area bought in the 1800s under VOC control was large in relation to its small population of colonists.9,44 This land expanded into the interior, and was assisted by the VOC. The Border and Travelling Boers (White frontiersmen) were left free to indulge in cattle trade, provided they did not impinge on the VOC’s rights. Geen writes12:21:

Thus was the dispersal of the colonists into the interior of Southern Africa begun. In the years after 1707 it was neither the citizens of the presentable little city of Cape Town nor the agricultural farmers of the surrounding districts that were to play the foremost part in the history of the colony, but the pastoral farmers on the ever-changing frontier.

The eighteen governors that followed after Willem van der Stel showed no controversial behaviour. Basically the style of government, enforced by the VOC, and the lack of true democracy since 1652, prevailed. Only five governors stayed six years and longer and need reference in terms of the establishment of a bad versus good model of leadership and governance. The eighteen governors for the period 1707 to 1795 were33: Maurits Pasques de Chavonnes (1714-1724)

De Chavonnes, a person described as “a man of some ability”, tried to overcome the old economic problems of the colony, namely its unprofitability, by raising the production of farms to yield more produce at lower running costs. In 1717 the Council of Policy thought it could address this problem by the import of more slaves, because they saw White labourers coming from Europe as “lazy and incompetent and as being more expensive than slave labour”.12:22 The fact is that Black slave labour was cheap and easy to manipulate and subordinate, whereas White labourers would not allow this kind of treatment.

The plea in 1717 of Captain Dominique de Chavonnes (brother of the governor and the commander of the Cape garrison) against slave labour and the wisdom around it, was totally ignored by the already racial predisposition of White farmers on cheap Black slave labour and the dehumanizing that the slave population already underwent at the Cape. The Biblical “baas-kneg” was central here, with the Blacks as acceptable subordinates, already stripped of their human dignity, while the White labourer seems not to be part of the lower social hierarchy whereto to slaves had belonged since the social stratification of races introduced by Godske in 1671. The rigidity of the Whites’ mindsets already captured by racism led thereto that they missed out on Dominique de Chavonnes’ wisdom when he said12:22:

“…white artisans were better workers than coloured slaves” and pointed out that “because they earned more they also spent more”. This would create a larger home market, making the colony more defensible and that the absence of slaves would encourage the development of habits of industry and lead to smaller farms that could be worked properly.

The end outcome was the importation of more slaves to the Cape for the exclusive benefits of the Whites and more perpetration of inhumanity on non-Whites. It is important to note that the slave laws had with time become more barbarous and punishments consequently more severe, making the “management” of slave labour and their behaviour much better and easier than that of free White labourers.12

The above quotation was specifically placed here with the focus on the later, further misuse of cheap Black labour and work reservation to exclusively benefit Whites during Apartheid. The further remark of Baron Gustaf Willem van Imhoff, who stayed (during the appointment of Governor Hendrik Swellengrebel: 1739-1750) for some time in 1743 at the Cape, must be read in the same context of the rooting of Apartheid’s later benefits for Whites, coming from this earlier time. Van Imhoff also reported, as Dominique de Chavonnes had done more than twenty-five years back, on the evils of slavery, by identifying an interesting cognition, already then seemingly in existence, to be reflected later by many of the forthcoming Afrikaner- Nationalists, in their use and misuse of cheap non-White labour inside the “baas-kneg” setup, which was strictly practiced until 1994. Van Imhoff’s view of the White farmer of the 1740s of the Cape was far from flattering when he said12:25:

I believe it would have been for the better, had we, when the colony was founded, commenced with Europeans and brought them hither in such numbers that hunger and want would have forced them to work….But having imported slaves every common or ordinary European becomes a gentleman and prefers to be served than to serve…We have in addition the fact that the majority of the farmers in this colony are not farmers in the real sense of the world, but owners of plantations, and that many of them consider it a shame to work with their own hands.

In 1662, Commander Zaharias Wagener also referred to some of the free burgher farmers who ceased to farm in a much more derogatory tone to that of Van Imhoff’s remark nearly a century later, when he said10:7-8:

“versopene, luije, lompe vlegels”, that despite all threats and measures of duress went to live at the Fort, where they ran boarding houses, in order to try and exploit sailors and visitors, and proceeded to sit idly on their porches, endlessly drinking and being idle, which allows for the Devil’s work”. (Own translation)

It seems as though the choices of the VOC of their “settlers” to the Cape were not always the best to form a nation in the end. The fact that the VOC’s executive leaders at the Cape also failed the tests of “goodness” in many cases, strengthen this view. It is thus important to briefly look further into the profiles of some of the governors after de Chavonnes (1714-1724). Hendrik Swellengrebel (1739-1750)

During Swellengrebel’s appointment, the Khoi-Khoi, KhoiSan and Xhosa problems were prominent. These problems were especially prevalent between 1737 and 1739, and serious racial disharmony and bloodshed ensued. In this period the KhoiSan, and less often the KhoiKhoi who were over time driven out from their original living areas around the Cape, started in reprisal to raid the White frontiersmen’s farms.8,9,12,,22,40

The KhoiKhoi were eventually no longer a problem, and seemed to submit to their subordinate position under the Whites. The bulk of the KhoiKhoi stayed within the the borders of the colony, becoming part of the farming environment as labourers, where they were absorbed into the growing Colored group. Some smaller groups withdrew from the incoming White frontiersmen, forming communities on their own, such as Adam Kok’s group, who moved from Piketberg to Kamiesberg, allowing his group to absorb half-breed KhoiKhoi to form the Griqua tribe.8,9,12,22,40

It seems to be the KhoiSan who refused to be part of this subordinate plan of the VOC Government. The White frontiersmen illegally occupied their traditional hunting areas and so they started an organized resistance in the form of attacks, in an effort to drive the Whites out. They where initially in some cases very successful, but their primitive weaponry in the form of bows and poisoned arrows and their restriction of moving by foot, made them easy targets for the White frontiersmen, moving fast on horses in large groups with guns. Most of the onslaughts by the KhoiSan, starting from 1715, were a kind of guerilla attack, spreading out over the vast borderline of the colony. The counter measures of the Boer frontiersmen were to organize commandos to subdue the KhoiSan. These punitive actions of the Boers were mostly extremely uncontrolled. In many of these KhoiSan hunting parties the VOC Government gave formal permission to the White frontiersmen to undertake these killings, leading thereto that hundreds of Bushmen were “terminated” in punishment actions which had been authorized.8,9,12,22,40

These uncontrolled killings of especially the KhoiSan were also prevalent during the time in office of Ryk Tulbagh (1751-1771), Swellengrebel’s successor, and that of Baron Joachim van Plettenberg (1773-1785), and continued until the end of VOC rule at the Cape. It also spread out against the Xhosas, whose land the White frontiersmen also illegally penetrated and occupied (although many Afrikaner historians ignore this reality in their books).8,9,12,22,40

The period from the early- to late 1700s was characterized by Whites and non-Whites coming face-to-face about illegal land occupation due to the failure of the VOC government at the Cape to handle the White frontiersmen’s increasingly delinquent behaviour to indigenous South Africans and their unrelenting illegal grabbing of the KhoiSan and Xhosas’ land. This set the stage for immense conflict, bloodshed and the creation of permanent hatred between Whites and Blacks. The fact that land grabbing by the Whites was the main reason for all these conflicts, leading to attacks and counter attacks and mass bloodshed, was ignored outright by the VOC. There was no effective border policy and strict ruling of their White subjects, whose ancestors they had brought to South Africa to settle initially only around Cape Town. IJsbrand Godske theoretically started up successful “apartheid” in South Africa in 1671, but the racism and racial disharmony which has been the country’s main problem up until today, was created directly by the White governors of the VOC, especially starting with Swellengrebel, and continuing undisturbed until the end of VOC rule with Sluysken as executive political leader in 1795. It is important to provide some insight into these early happenings, specifically the prominent roles of the White, KhoiSan and Xhosa frontiersmen in this later political mess.8,9,12,22,40 White frontiersmen

We have already noted Geen’s12 reference to the disorderly and law-evading actions of the travelling and border Boers, or so-called White frontiersmen, who became in their own right sheriffs, cowboys, outlaws and crooks in a completely unorganized border area. Geen writes12:23-24:

In fact, since that it had appeared as though the central government was leaving the defence of the borders to the frontiersmen, so that in time they came to look upon themselves not only as their own defence but as a law unto themselves. In this same year (1739) one Etienne Barbier, a runaway soldier, who had attempted to raise a revolt among dissatisfied burghers at the Paarl, was captured and executed and thereafter yet another ineffective edict was published against intercourse with the native tribes.

These White frontiersmen’s delinquent behaviour was not only mostly ignored by the Cape Authority, but indeed assisted with their tacit allowing of the White frontiersmen to enlarge the colony’s area constantly by their shifting of the one official border to the following border; deeper and deeper inland, and the taking over of non-Whites’ traditional land and thus the creation of a more disorderly government. What is most important, is that these Boers and their children, who were frequently not law abididng, with strong views on race differentiation and the belief of the baas-kneg-system, which characterized the later Grand Apartheid of the National Party (NP), formed the greatest bulk of the early 1800s Voortrekkers. They undoubtedly transferred complex negative cognitions, customs, traditions, beliefs and views into the later two Boer-republics.4,12,22

Their reasons to “trek” were undoubtedly the easily availability of farms, but also the “free roaming” of an uncontrolled lifestyle, away from the Cape Authority which the White frontiersmen saw more and more as useless and uneconomic, and more of a burden than a support in their daily life.9,12,22,31

The abundance of soil and favourable conditions of the interior for stock farming, as well as little resistance from the KhoiKhoi and KhoiSan, contributed fast to a self-sufficient lifestyle. This isolation, although mostly free from the nuisance of the VOC Government, claimed a price. Within two generations, negative outcomes followed as a result of their cultural isolation and lack of good law and order, seriously affecting their traditional “Cape and European culture”. Their pastoral and nomadic way of living, where cattle bartering with the KhoiKhoi, hunting of an overabundance of game and management of the grazing of their stock were their day-to-day existence, and were undoubtedly both attractions and benefits. But their isolation, lack of educational facilities, lack of cultural and life-enriching influences and lack of sound policing of their behaviour, brought about a down-scale in their European standards of living – a serious shortcoming which was carried with them as they moved further north, west and east as the first frontiersmen. Their culturally deprived children and grandchildren carried this “cultural poverty” with them as they moved beyond the Vaal River and further north.9,12,31

Geen writes about this frontier culture of theirs as follows12:29:

…but the isolation and difficulties of frontier life also made them limited in their outlook, impatient with all forms of control and so intensely individualistic that it became difficult to unite them in effective co-operation. They lost most of their civilization on the way to the Promised Land. Some could write, still more could sign their names, many read the Bible, especially the Old Testament, into which they read a justification of themselves, their beliefs and all their works, but for the rest, learning and the affairs of the great world were closed books to them.

These frontiersmen, spreading out to the north to form with other proto-Afrikaners the Transvaal and Free State Republics, were seen in the pre-1836 period as part of a group of people, who the post-1836 British Government at the Cape had viewed as people from a backwards colony (to use the historian CW Kiewiet’s words)12. These were the people who the British were forced to make “acceptable and fitable” into the new British Empire. To fulfill this British “uplifting” ideal, it cost, in less than a half century, from the British Empire two Boer wars, millions of British pounds and the loss of thousand of lives. This leaves a great doubt as to whether the comprehensive neglect by the long rule of the VOC of the proto-Afrikaners, namely the frontiersmen and Voortrekkers, was not transferred into the mindsets of their descendants, the Transvaal and Free State burghers, and after 1910 into the Afrikaners of the Union, and whether this was ever erased.4,12 The official termination of the KhoiSan frontiersmen

The KhoiSan did not cultivate land or own any livestock, but lived from nature’s produce such as game and edible plants. Although the KhoiSan were hunters and not farmers, land and territory was very important to them. Certain areas of South Africa, notwithstanding a lack of inhabitants or a population, were claimed over many years by the KhoiSan as their exclusive hunting grounds and property, from which they had even driven out the incoming Blacks. These traditions and customs of the KhoiSan were principles that were not well respected by many of the unruly White frontiersmen, who started to occupy the best grazing land of the KhoiSan. For the KhoiSan this “White barbarism” of continuous land-grabbing was a serious threat to their future existence and a reason for justified war. They organized four “wars”, more like guerilla onslaughts, in 1715, 1731, 1738 and 1754 against the White frontiersmen and successfully drove them from their newly occupied farms. It was especially in times of drought that the KhoiSan started to intensively attack and to rob the White farmers.9,15

In their attacks aimed at driving the White frontiersmen southwards back out of their traditional territory, the Khoisan resorted to much cruelty – methods similar to those which are seen today in much terrorism and guerilla fighting.

Van der Walt writes about these cruelties, which meted out as much pain as possible and damage on the enemy, which characterized the KhoiSan’s warfare, as follows9:101:

This explains the frequent apparently senseless cruelty of the Bushmen. They did not just murder cattle watchmen, but tortured them with incredible cruelty. Stolen cattle were mistreated and frequently maimed as they fled. The cattle watchmen were sometimes murdered and their sheep or cattle were stabbed to death, without any thought being given to using them for food. (Own translation).

After the 1770s, the conflicts between White frontiersmen and the KhoiSan worsened, leading thereto that during the period of the early 1770s to the late 1780s, the White frontiersmen were successfully driven out of areas like the Nuweveld, bringing about serious loss of lives, livestock and damage to property. With regard to the immense losses for the period 1786 to 1788 of the White frontiersmen at the hand of these various KhoiSan guerilla attacks, Van der Walt reports9:102:

According to the calculations of Magistrate Woeke, in the Graaf-Reinet district, in the two and a half years between 1 July 1786 and 31 December 1788, 107 cattle watchmen were murdered, and 99 horses, 6,299 cattle and 17970 sheep were stolen or killed. During the last thirty years of the centuary, a bloody guerilla war full of hatred and bitterness developed. The Bushmen did not lose any chance to steal or destroy, to burn down farm houses and to murder farmers or cattle watchmen. The farmers shot all the Bushmen that they could get in their sights, and commandos were destroyed as often as possible. In 1777 the government approved a war of extermination (Own translation).

About the tragic outcomes for the KhoiSan brought on them by one of these official wars of extermination of the KhoiSan, to which Van der Walt above refers, Geen reports as follows12:28:

The relations between the frontier farmers and the Bushmen were far less satisfactory. In the ten years after 1754 there where frequent Bushmen raids on the farms each followed by a punishment commando that killed many of the raiders and made apprenctices of the captured women and children. In 1774 the Council of Policy organized a large commando under Godlieb Opperman, which ranged over three hundred miles of the borderland and, for the loss of one burgher, took over two hundred prisoners, most of whom were apprenticed to members of the commando, and killed over five hundred Bushmen. It was a sorry business and by no means the end of the matter, as for years to come, these raids and counter commandos continued.

The question must be asked as to whether the constant and senseless killing of the KhoiSan, driven from their original living space by the White frontiersmen since 1652, differs from crimes against humanity and whether it was not genocide? Was this not a well-planned scheme to wipe the KhoiSan from the face of South Africa, as the Nazis tried to do with the Jews and other minorities in the Second World War? Geen’s12 undermentioned description of who the KhoiSan were and how they were treated in the 1600s to 1700s (and possibly are still treated today) may offer us some insight into the dehumanizing and distancing as human beings which the KhoiSan underwent since the Cape Settlement started up in 1652. This process of dehumanizing was executed by the Whites, but activated and allowed unobstructed by the VOC’s executive political leaders at the Cape; persons who were supposed to be responsible for the rights and life of every South African. It also gives some insight as to how South Africans’ respect for the lives and the happiness of other people already went wrong in the 1700s. Most of all, it gives an in-depth insight as to how some of our executive political leaders between 1652 and 1795 failed all South Africans, including the KhoiSan. To issue the approval for the cold-blooded mass termination of other humans – people who were here in South Africa long before the Europeans, and basically to steal their land for self-enrichment – is unforgiveable. Any person or group wiping out a tribe, not only by their direct killing, but also by robbing them of their economics and livelihood and erasing them from society, is/are real Frankenstein Monsters. On the tragic reaching of the end of the road for the KhoiSan frontiersmen and their families as a significant tribe or group, Geen offers us a short historical reflection12:9-10:

The Bushmen, little yellow-skinned people barely five feet in height, were the least advanced of the three races [Blacks, Hottentots and Bushmen] occupying Southern Africa at the time of the arrival of the Europeans. An examination of instruments and mounds suggest that they were, perhaps, the first inhabitants of South Africa, probably having been compelled to migrate from central Southern Asia, either by scarcity of food and space, or by a stronger race. According to one theory, one section going south-east occupied the Malay Peninsula, the Philippines and Australia, another section travelling west entered Spain, while a third found its way into Africa, where they were gradually pushed south by the stronger Hamites occupying the Nile region. In succession other races entered Africa from the east and by the Sixteenth Century there were probably no Bushmen north of the Zambesi River. Being nomadic hunters, they lived largely on game and roots. Their family and tribal ties were weak, their ideas of religion rudimentary and their vocabulary limited, but they had considerable artistic talent as we know from their drawings and paintings to be found in rock shelters all over South Africa. These are in many ways similar, and in some respects superior, to those extant on the walls of caves in southern Spain. However, their neighbours, both the Hottentots and Bantu, doubted whether they were quite human and so it is not surprising that the Europeans also proved enemies, and today Bushmen remain only in very small numbers in the Kalahari Desert and South-West Africa.

This “animalizing” of the KhoiSan is worse than dehumanizing can ever be, and is further well illustrated by the fact that during the Difaqane (the period 1810 to 1840 of Black-on-Black violence inland in Northern South Africa) they fell victim to cannibalism and were hunted as game by various Black tribes like the Bafokeng, in the mountain areas where they took shelter.4,12,15 As also described by Geen12 their presence as “a people” and their status as humans in Southern Africa, seen from the White frontiersmens’ view of the 1700s, was as “only a nuisance”, undoubtedly equal to the nuisance of a predator. The KhoiSan was “just a Bushman”.

Of the KhoiSan tribe’s early empowerment, strong enough initially to successfully fight the White and Black frontiersmen from 1652, there was, by the beginning of the early 1800s, basically nothing left. They could also not be spoken of as a tribe anymore. Sadly in the 1800s there was not yet an International Criminal Court (ICC) to prevent the termination of the Bushmen.

The demography of the indigenous people of South Africa, having evolved over hundreds, if not thousands of years, was irreversibly changed in one hundred and fifty years of European progress. Infantile geo-politics arrived in the 1800s for South Africa. Black frontiersmen

Unil the early 1700s, the White frontiersmen’s immediate indigenous enemies were the KhoiKhoi and KhoiSan, who they forced to move north-, east- and westwards with ease, further away from the Cape Authority and further over the official borders of the Cape Colony. This constant extension of the colony’s authority, from the Breede River to the Fish River, forced Baron van Plettenberg to extend the frontier “officially” to the Fish River in July 1775. In September 1778, during a visit of Van Plettenberg to the Fish River border, he found two opposition groups living suddenly in close proximity to each other: the Xhosa frontiersmen, moving south, and the White frontiersmen, moving north. The first real battle line between Black and White about land ownership in South Africa was clearly and precisely drawn.8,912,22,40

But what was important of this first clash, was that the Xhosas were not to be a pushover for the White frontiersmen, as the KhoiKhoi or KhoiSan had been. The Boers found their match after more than hundred years of uncontrolled subjugation of the KhoiKhoi, KhoiSan and Cape slaves. These first clashes in the Fish River region formed the beginning of the future infighting between Blacks and Whites, running continuously over more than two centuries, until 2018.8,912,22,40

Geen12 describes the needs and reasoning of Blacks as well as Whites of that time (which do not differ very much from their needs and reasoning in 2018, and which also form the arguments of the leader of the EFF, Julius Malema, which he is constantly hot-bloodedly voicing in Parliament in favour of his land-capture). Geen writes12:28:

The clash with the Bantu in the region of the Fish opened a new chapter in South African history, which was to prove both long and stormy, for both the Bantu and the Boers were pastoralists whose wealth lay in their herds of cattle and sheep and whose chief object in life was the search for new water and pastures. What made the clash all the more severe was the fact that the new eastern frontier lay in an area of uncertain rainfall and drought. Moreover, to intensify the struggle, the area of unreliable rainfall lay behind the Boers and that of the more plentiful rainfall behind the Bantu.

But the concept of land and the fighting about it goes much deeper than just grazing and a livelihood through farming, as many White historians, like Geen12 (also quoting Professor WM Macmillan in this respect) interpret by saying12:30:

‘The little understood Kaffir Wars are properly to be regarded as the struggle between two streams of colonizers for the possession of valuable land’. This struggle was complicated by the fact that the European and Bantu ideas on the holding of land differed fundamentally, the former being based on ownership, while according to Bantu customary law, a chief could neither sell nor cede land, but could merely grant the right of using it in a particular way. For a long time this difference of conception was a stumbling block to peace in South Eastern Africa.

This view of Geen’s12 is far from the full truth: the truth was that the constant northern, western and eastern moving White frontiermen were not interested in leasing or buying land. They “stole” land which had become over a long period, mostly by fighting and then occupation, the exclusive property of the Black frontiersmen (it did not matter if it was under a chief’s customary holding). (Mostly it seems that the chiefs were not willing to relinquish their land anyway). It was unlawful land grabbing, mostly by force, by the White frontiersmen. When these Black frontiersmen reacted by raids into their lost land, these actions led to “justified” reprisals by the Whites in the form of the various Xhosa wars (or, as Geen12 called them, the Kaffir Wars).

Although the Blacks were the majority in these first clashes, they made their own pre-modern weaponry and were thus unequal in fighting ability, when compared with the White frontiersmen, who were well equiped with weapons and horse mobility. They became the losers in the long term political history of South Africa. But this victory for the Whites did not come with ease, and never really eased up, not even in 2018.

Geen writes about the inequality between the White and Black frontiersmen battling for empowerment and the good outcomes for the White frontiersmen from their better military striking power, as follows12:28:

In the struggle that followed it was the [White] frontiersman that had the advantage, for his horse gave him greater mobility, his gun gave him irresistible fire power and his tented wagon enabled him to turn conquest into settlement by bringing up his family and household goods, as they were.

This inequality in military empowerment against the Whites stayed with the Blacks (as with the other non-Whites, like the Coloreds and Indians) for centuries, and could not even be cracked by the ANC’s MKs’ best tries. But in these conflicts, originating in the late 1700s, the Blacks also lost out immensely on politics, economics and social life: the winner takes all; all ways. The same which had happened with the Whites’ political, emotional, cognitive and economical deprivation at the Cape Colony under the VOC regime of nearly two centuries, had unfortunately also happened to all non-Whites in South Africa, due to their suppression from 1652 onward. The same process to make people from a backwards country acceptable and fit for a modern country — as was tried by the British Empire with the Whites in the Cape Colony after their years of ordeal at the hands of the VOC – had also been followed since 1994 in South Africa. Unfortunately not all South Africans have so far been successful in overcoming their immense deprivation, coming from as far back as1652.4,12 Joachim van Plettenberg (1773-1785)

After the Willem van der Stel debacle, the relations between the Cape Authority and the colonists were stable, although there was no real change to a democratic government and open society. The political power was still solely vested in the governor and his Council of Policy and the VOC owners of the Cape Colony. For the Cape Government, which was the sole representative of the VOC, the business interests of the VOC were essential, while the colonists’ interests were secondary. But it seems that gradually extortion, self-conceit, corruption and nepotism inside the VOC by its officials began to emerge once again, especially among the higher ranking officials. Prominent was the top-heavy number of officials working for the VOC (with a ratio of one official for every five burghers!) and their under-payment, making them corrupt and nepotistic in order for them to be able to make a living. The influence of the successful revolt of the American English colonies against the trading restrictions forced upon them by the British Empire began to take a hold in the mindsets of the burghers. In this regard it must be mentioned that the free burghers still had no direct share in the government of the day, while there were numerous trading restrictions imposed on them which smothered the development of trade and the beginning of any industry. At the same time the VOC was in the process of declining, making the burghers a target for a greater income generating source for the VOC and the Cape Colony’s administration.8,9,12,22,40

There was also a new misuse of juridical power inside the undemocratic VOC management against the colonists. It was highlighted with the appointment of the Independent Fiscal, Willem Cornelis Boers, who was only responsible for his behaviour to the Council of Seventeen to judicially oversee cases without any say by the governor. He also discriminated against the status of the colonists (White, but of local birth) and the inhabitants of the Netherlands. This inclination led further to an “uplifted” view of the VOC officials’ status with the colonists “stripped” of their “status”, resulting in more and more objections by the colonists against the governor, the Council of Policy and specifically WC Boers.8,9,12,22,40

A petition to the Council of Seventeen gave a better view of the unsatisfactory Cape situation to the council, although little negative was mentioned of Van Plettenberg himself as governor, notwithstanding his extreme policy against any opposition, which had already led to his deportation of eighteen burghers. As previously mentioned, prominently in focus during that time were WC Boers and his crony officials. The burghers put forward certain demands, like the codification of the laws; demanding that seven burghers should be members of the Council of Policy when matters concerning the colonists were under discussion; that two of these burghers should retire annually and that their places should only be replaced by the nominees of the burgher councillors; they asked for equal representation with the officials on the High Court of Justice and for the right of appeal to the Council of India. Regarding the immediate improvement of their economics, they demanded the abolition of private trading by the officials, the grant of free trade with foreign ships and the VOC, and a reduction in farm rents.8,9,12,22,40,43

Van Plettenberg, in reaction to the Council of Seventeen’s enquiry, argued that the petitioners were in the minority (only four hundred out of three thousand burghers signed it). The outcome was that only the demand about the same number of representatives as that of the officials on the High Court was granted, but having representatives on the Council of Policy was refused.8,9,12,22,40

After this negative outcome the burghers sent a deputation to the State-General in the Netherlands in 1785, bringing some, but limited improvement in 1876 to the Cape’s governance, such as the introduction of a committee of the High Court consisting of three officials and three burghers, chosen by the Council of Policy to fix prices, but only to make suggestions on new forms of taxation. Included in their duties were also the control of public works and acting as a municipal council for Cape Town. The political rights of the burghers were still non-existant.8,9,12,22,40,44

The successors of WC Boers – Jan Jacob Serrurier and Van Lyden van Blittersrijk – showed the same judicial arrogance. New reactions by the burghers began to take place. Central to these actions were various unnamed writings, which started to circulate in the Cape Colony. The central sentiments in these writings were the right to live in a democracy and to have political rights and freedom, something so far unknown at the Cape. Uncontrolled wrongdoing by the VOC officials and governor, against the colonists, also became prominent subjects. More and more requests for resistance by the White frontiersmen were put on paper. Anti-VOC secret meetings were being held. This battle for freedom, lead by 444 colonists, ended in a comprehensive Burgher petition (a political and juridical document of very high standard) which they wanted to send to the Netherlands, but this was refused by the governor and the Council of Policy. In the end it was sent in 1779 in secret to the Netherlands, where it was presented to the Council of Seventeen by four colonists as representatives of the Cape burghers. Although many of these 1779 requests of the colonists were refused, some were accepted.12,22,44

A later petition in 1782, the Nadere Memorie, was mostly also unsuccessful. Most of all, the beginning of democracy was blocked, as Beyers explains43:118: “The principle of free election in all burger-like matters, which were pleaded for in art 7 of the Nadere Memorie and in art 9 and 13 of the Burgerpetisie, were not approved by the HERE XVII (Own translation).

On the other hand, positive political outcomes followed, some slow but some fast, such as the resignation of some of the prominent corrupt and underperforming high officials, namely the Independent Fiscal WC Boers, the Equipage Master Damien Staring and the Head of the Cape Militia, Van Prehn. But most of all at last sound political thinking and planning on the side of the burghers did prevail. The colonists started to ignore the Council of Seventeen and the VOC and turned for help to the State-General of the Netherlands in their quest for democracy. The organization of the colonists into a political unity led to the founding in 1784 of a political party, the Patriotte. In 1784 this party addressed the State-General three times with requests that the Cape Colony’s statutory position should be changed to a “Volkstaat subordinate to the State-General” for political governance. These three addresses in 1785 were without real success. As a last resort, they again sent a delegation in 1795 to the Netherlands, and again addressed the State-General, but again without success.12,22,43

Geen12 summarized the immense failure of Van Plettenberg as a governor very well with the following inscription12:33: “The record of van Plettenberg’s governorship make for dismal reading…”. However, the reading of the records of the other commanders and governors before him, from as far back as 1652, also make for dismal reading.8,9,12,22,31,40,43 Cornelis Jacob van de Graaff (1785-1791)

In 1786, during the office of Cornelis Jacob van de Graaff (1785-1791), another petition was sent to the State-General in the Netherlands, but again it failed the test.

But the Cape Patriotte had a taste now for freedom and democracy. Basically the driving force was that they believed in their right to be able to select their own political representatives and the right to rule themselves. This was now the main thinking of and planning by the burghers. In the meantime, the VOC started to lose authority and to fall into financial dispair as a business entity. The need for independence was fast activated at Graaff-Reinett and Swellendam. The burghers of Graaff-Reinet, which was declared a separate District in December 1785 by the Cape Authority, started, especially as a result of their poor economic conditions and the continuing attacks by the Xhosas, for which they received no help, to take the first steps towards “independence”.

The founding of Graaff-Reinet as a separate district by the VOC sounds more glorious than it was. It was mainly constructive in improving the governmental order of the VOC between the Gamtoos and Fish Rivers, and changing the White frontiersmen’s delinquent and disorderly behaviour. The Graaff-Reinet district, most of which fell between the two rivers, fast became a headache for the VOC. The VOC’s various edicts, recalling all burghers to the colonial side of the Fish River, and their forbidding of the burghers to go into the Xhosa territory to trade, was, as the many previous VOC proclamations, null and void, basically because there was no VOC police force to enforce the edicts on the many Boers who trespassed constantly. (It is doubted whether the VOC Government was ever actually intent on stopping border crossings and trade). This ongoing expansion of the Cape Colony and White territory by the uncontrolled and more and more independent White frontiersmen, activated direct conflict between the burghers and the Xhosas, leading to the Second Xhosa war (1789-1793) and the Xhosa’s focused driving out of the burghers from the Zuurveld by their chief Ndhlambi. The stage was set for future and more White frontiersmen’s conflicts with the Black frontiersmen and the intensification of the growing “Black-White problem” of South Africa. Central here was the legal land ownership of established Xhosa areas (although without card and transport), ongoing confiscation by the White frontiersmen and the VOC Government themselves. Vague international legislation was available but for the Xhosas, as for the KhoiSan, it seems to have not been available in the South African 1800s of “cracked” European justice.9,12,40 Abraham Josias Sluysken (1793-1795)

On the 1st February 1793 the newly established French Republic declared war on Great Britain and Holland, leaving Sluysken as governor in charge of the VOC’s Cape Colony with a very insecure position. He upheld the interim situation of the failing frontier policy of the VOC by basically doing nothing. As a result, the situation became more and more restless, mostly due to the disorderly activities of the White frontiersmen. The end outcome was that the frontiersmen started to ignore the Cape Government, which they saw as not having protected them and, in terms of the liberal Maynier policy, having forbidden them to protect themselves against the KhoiSan and the Xhosas. This political instability of the VOC Government and sudden political opportunity for a break-away, gave birth to the long dreamed of ideal of the free burghers own republic spirit.

Geen writes12:35:

… on the 27th Augustus 1795, the seething dissatisfaction came to a head, when Adriaan van Jaarsveld and JC Trigardt, in command of forty burghers, drove Maynier from his drostdy at Graaff-Reinet and appointed a provincial landdrost and heemraden. Subsequently they proclaimed a republic with a National Assembly of its own of which van Jaarsveld was president. On the 16th July 1795 the Swellendam ‘Nationals’ followed suit and chose H Steyn as president.12, 43

These two declarations as “republics” must in addition be seen as declarations of “independence from the VOC”, rather than a total break-away from the Cape Colony. Although there was some unclearness with the burghers of Graaff-Reinet and Swellendam on their political and judicial positions in the Cape Colony, it seems as though they saw themselves as part of the free Republic of the Netherlands, either as republics or as colonies. The most important outcome of these happenings was that they saw themselves to be “unchained from the slavery of the VOC”. It seems that Stellenbosch and Cape Town also considered “independence”, but their plans were fast blocked by the arrival of a British military force at the Cape in June 1795. For the burghers of Graaf-Reinett and Swellendam, a British occupation of the Cape Colony was less favourable in terms of their existing lack of respect for law and order, than it was for the politically finessed and law-ordered Stellenbosch and Cape Town. Graaf-Reinett and Swellendam saw the coming of a possible British rule over them as endangering their “delinquent” freedom and uncontrolled activities which they had been allowed by the VOC. Notwithstanding some military resistance, the Cape Colony was handed over to the British Forces on the 16th September 1795. With this transfer, the VOC disappeared forever from the Cape Colony. In 1796 Graaff-Reinett accept British rule. The same happened with Swellendam. The dream of political freedom of the White colonist farmers and White frontiersmen, coming from as far back as 1652, ended absurdly a hundred and fifty years later in 1796. Notwithstanding this disappointment, the foundation was laid for a new political struggle for freedom.12,22,43 The beginning of Xhosa and KhoiSan racism

The above-mentioned overview of the executive political leaders of the Cape Colony shows a new, clear separation between Whites and non-Whites in the colony, additional to the earlier separation at the Cape Settlement since 1652. This racial separation was now based on the economic, social and cultural factors. It laid the foundation in the mindsets of non-Whites, such as the Blacks and the Khoisan, that the Whites did not respect their culture and habits, customs and traditions, as well as their “property rights and laws”, despite how undefined and “pre-modern and uncivilized” these “rights and laws” were in terms of the “standards” seen from European stereotypes. For the non-Whites, the Whites were undoubtedly seen as “European barbarians” who did not deserve a place in the African context. For many of the non-Whites, modelled into their pre-modern psyche, the killing of the enemy was the natural way (and the only way) to assure their continuation as a group and reinstitute their previous rights and properties. (This behaviour is still apparent today in the USA’s activities in the Middle East against the indigenous Afghans, Iraqis and Syrians who dare to oppose their will or endanger their interests). In this context the non-Whites were fast classified by Whites to be a “dangerous species”; one without a justified place in the modern society, and with very good reason because of their constant murderous behavior. Their killings on sight were justified and constantly practiced, while the “extermination” for instance of the KhoiSan, was a legal and natural process. Inhumanity began to be internalized into the mindset of the Whites, while racial discrimination in the form of White supremacy, was undoubtedly activated to lay the foundation for later phenomena such as Apartheid.4,9,12,22

From the above it is clear that the executive political leaders of the White farmers, as well as the executive leaders of the government, in their actions to solely safeguard the lives and property of the White farmers (notwithstanding the illegal possession thereof from the indigenous non-Whites) by the “formal extermination” for instance of the KhoiSan, were undoubtedly seen as “good”, or even “great” leaders from the White side. This policy of “extermination” was further undoubtedly transferred with time into the mindsets and ruling culture of the Cape regime’s executive leadership, to be followed in time by future White executive political leaders, to uphold peace and security seen from a White perspective, and only to benefit the White inhabitants. In the end it became the only “correct, justified and applicable way” of dealing with South Africa’s masses of non-Whites.9,12

The non-White South Africans, such as the Xhosa and the KhoiSan, had however, clearly developed totally different views to those of the Whites on the concepts of good leaders and good regimes of leadership. The non-Whites’ disapproving and opposing views are reflected in their “formal extermination” of White farmers (and even their non-White servants) in the 1700s to the 1800s in their war against the White occupiers. This means undoubtedly that they viewed their own leaders, enacting these murders, as “good” leaders, acting in line with their established pre-modern regime of leadership, which had prescribed for a long time, from generation to generation, the murdering and outright killing of their enemies.9,12,22 But to say that there was not the same quality of leader, or the same type of regime of leadership with the Xhosas or KhoiSan, as had been maintained by the Whites at the Cape since 1652, is totally untrue. Just study once again the inhumanity of installing non-Whites as slaves and their cruel treatment at the Cape, the grabbing of the Xhosas’ and KhoiSan’s land, together for instance with the hunting of the “animal’, the Bushman. This makes the quality of the indigenous non-Whites and that of the “European” Whites, equal, notwithstanding the poor quality of this behaviour.4,9,12,22

For the South African non-Whites, namely the Xhosa and KhoiSan, the only clear cognition reflected for them in the constant killing spree against them by the 1700s-1800s Cape Whites, was that they were losers against the dominant White winners, missing out on their own pre-modern murderous and cruel behavior against the Whites which made them targets. Although the Khoisan was basically in terms of group empowerment and numbers wiped out from public life through the Cape Government’s and the colonists’ policy of “termination”, hate for the proto-Afrikaner and the Whites lived on in the mindsets of their small group of descendants, and also their descendants who mixed with other non-Whites whose forefathers had suffered the same unfortunate lot at the hands of the Whites. This hatred was also apparent among the mass of Xhosas against the Whites.9 The end of the VOC and its Cape Colony ruling in 1802

The golden age of the VOC started to come to an end when the Cape refreshment station was founded in 1652, slowly moving into decline in the 18th Century. A direct reason for this decline was the two English Navigation Acts of 1651 and 1660, aimed at the Dutch carrying trade. Both the acts were followed up by indecisive naval wars between England and Holland (1652-1654 and 1664-1667). In the meantime, Holland was also involved in four wars with the French. After the death in 1702 of William of Orange (who was also King of England as William lll), Holland was ruled under an oligarchic form of republican government until 1747. These outcomes, as well as Holland’s involvement in the Austrian Succession War between 1740 to 1748, and the American War of Independence from 1780 to 1783, brought huge financial and other loses, as well as the loss of much of her shipping activities and movements. The restart of war between the French Revolution Republic and the restored House of Orange led to the flight of the Stadtholder to England and the establishment of the Batavian Republic in the Netherlands. The eventual downfall of the Netherlands as a great naval and a commercial power, also spelled disaster for the VOC in the end. The costs of the VOC and the mismanagement of the Council of Seventeen, together with immense corruption, forced the VOC to declare its last dividend in 1782, and twelve year later it was declared bankrupt.8,9,12

After the Prince of Orange fled to England, the Patriot Party of the Netherlands came to terms with the French, forming the Netherlands into the Batavian Republic as a vassal state of the French Republic. In this context the Prince of Orange asked the British Government to protect the Cape against a French occupation. With the treaty of Rustenburg, signed on the 6th September 1795, the Cape Colony surrendered to Great Britain, ending the rule of the VOC at the Cape after 143 years forever. Furthermore, with the establishment of the Batavian Republic, the VOC lost its governing powers and was legally dissolved after a chequered career of almost two hundred years.12

4. Discussion

For this study, taking the period of 1652 to 1795 into consideration, to be able to make an evaluation on the quality of leadership of South African executive political leaders and governments, the descriptions by various political and historical writers on political leaders and governments, as well as the writings of business and management experts on business executive leaders, were consultated.13-26

The period reviewed was over one hundred and forty-three years, covering twenty-nine commanders and governors as the chief executive officers of the VOC Government at the Cape. It became obvious from day one of the study that the South Africa political history is an exclusively White one, wherein the South African non-Whites played a minimal role. Where there are references to Black leaders such as Tshaka, Ndhlambi, Gaika, Adam Kok, Moroko, and Mosheh, to mention a few, it was within a negative context, reflecting them to be aggressive, murdering and anti-White orientated. Their constructive contributions to the history of South Africa from 1652 to 1795 seem not to exist, besides their so called “constant path of bloodshed”. 8,9,12

The profile of the executive political leaders and their regimes, appraised over this period of one hundred and forty-three years in totality, undoubtedly reflects some good points, such as the instalation in 1652 of a fast, workable farming unit by Jan van Riebeeck, which activated in a few years a basic farming and sheltering environment wherein the first inhabitants could successfully survive. Here the successful instalation of a kind of administrative management to run the refreshment station by him as a leader, was prominent.8,9,12,31

What is notable is that future planning and strategic thinking with regard to the long term future of the settlement and its inhabitants was lacking from day one. This shortcoming, aside from the simple daily function of existence, was created by the fact that the VOC, although a semi-governmental institution of the Netherlands Government, failed to be a truly statutory institution, driven by the political, social, personal and economical needs, thinking, planning and activities of its inhabitants from the beginning. Profit making for the VOC was central to all activities, leading to an exclusive business mentality of thinking and management wherein the employer was the sole decision maker. This business culture stayed with the VOC at the Cape until it went bankrupt, and led to an autocratic governmental system until 1795, with the end of the VOC, leaving a legacy of many of the later Cape burghers having a cultural, economic and politically backwards setup.8,9,12

On leadership per se, the subordination of the commanders and governors to the various higher empowered bodies overseeing them, like the Council of Seventeen and the Council of India, was an enormous impediment to institute in the long term any improvement to the legal ruling of the settlement and later the colony. The Council of Policy at the Cape was always an autocratic body, serving as a power base for the Council of Seventeen, as well as for the executive leaders to enforce their foolish political views and beliefs. Herewith went the opportunity which this autocratic system offered to the executive leaders to allow corruption and nepotism by their cronies and to enrich themselves by crooked activities. With regard to allegations of crooked activities, state capture and misused power, which are being laid at the door of Jacob Zuma at the moment, persons like Jan van Riebeeck and Simon and Willem van der Stel were masters at these delinquencies. Indeed, the modern day South Africa was started up by a crook in 1652 and corruption and dishonesty have been rife among its officials from day one. It was not only Australia which was started up by criminal forefathers: South Africa, looking back on our political and historical tracts from 1652, leaves us with the question in 2018: can we ever be rehabilitated?8,9,12

One point of light in the constant political rhetoric around Jacob Zuma’s innocence or not, is that if he has stolen, it was a BEE action, fingering the Whites as the only “colonist thieves” with Jan van Riebeeck in the lead. This pin-points in our political history two contradictions which makes Whites, Coloreds and Blacks equal: Blacks, Coloreds and Whites are all colonists and it is not only Zuma to be accused of crookery, but also Van Riebeeck as a White and Willem van der Stel as a Colored! This makes us triple-blood-brothers of crooks! South African Blacks, Coloreds and Whites seemingly are all the same when it comes to delinquency!31,33-36,40

Looking critically at the appraisal checklist of the executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795, they failed to solve short and long term economic and political problems, especially the racial issue. They undoubtedly did good for the inhabitants in many ways, but when asking who these “inhabitants” were, they are overwhelmingly the Whites. The South African non-Whites have zero status on all terrains of life in this 1652 to 1795 environment. This inclination goes much deeper: the KhoiSans were killed by the authorities as though they were animals, while the White frontiersmen also had a free hand in these atrocities. The introduction of slaves under the auspices of the Cape’s executive leaders, starting with the White Jan van Riebeeck in the lead, laid the foundation for crimes against humanity, Apartheid and discrimination. To argue that slavery must be seen as an acceptable custom in the 1600s to 1700s timeframe and in line with Biblical traditions, is without any logical foundation. Allowing slavery into the Cape’s system was a massive moral mistake, demonstrated by the actions of Cape leaders and VOC overseers like Captain Dominique de Chavonnes in 1717 and Baron Gustaf Willem in 1743. Slavery at the Cape was for one purpose only: the self-enrichment of the Cape White farmers of today’s Western Cape. The Cape’s leaders were not only guilty of crimes against humanity by allowing it, they practiced it themselves in the buying of slaves for the service of the VOC, as well as that of their own farming. Van Riebeeck as well as the two Van der Stels were prominent slave owners in this context. Also the capturing as apprecntices of KhoiSan womenfolk and the children of the KhoiSan men, who the White frontiersmen had killed in their punitive expeditions (apprecntices being forced slaves), confirm these crimes against humanity which saturated the South African mindset over time. But slavery goes deeper: it had at its base a view of non-Whites such as the Blacks, Malaysians, Indians and KhoiSan as “dehumanized” beings in the mindsets of many Whites. Non-Whites had become objects which could become property of Whites, without free choice, as though the slave was a wagon or sheep, etc. The prominent question about the period 1652 to 1795 is: Why did the English not go into Scotland, Ireland and Spain, or the Netherlanders into Spain, to catch some of those Whites and to sell them as slaves at the Cape? Why the differentiation between White slaves versus Black slaves? Does this unanswered question not give us some insight into the racially contaminated mindsets of some of the Whites settled at the Cape refreshment station and later the Cape Colony?8,9,12,22,31,40

It seems as though most of the executive leaders at the Cape came from “good” family stock and had also received above average training and education. (Only one governor was born here, namely Hendrik Swellengrebel). Many, as previously mentioned used these personal qualities to benefit the colony, but, as happens in most political outcomes, became persons contaminated with self-enrichment and self-empowerment for themselves and the autocratic VOC Government, erasing the “good” which they could do for the inhabitants. Where improvement was brought into the Cape Government, it was requested by the inhabitants, and this improvement was also limited and not focused on empowering the inhabitants politically. Never in the various records of the Cape’s executive leaders is strong resistance reflected by them against the VOC’s many wrongdoings to the inhabitants, such as the VOC’s policies or the actions of senior VOC officials, commanders and governors. The VOC’s interests always came first; and then of course their own interests as commander or governor.8,9,12,22,31,40

Some historians use the description of “goodness” of Ryk Tulbagh (1751-1771) as an example of the “excellence” of Cape executive leaders. However, this is totally misleading, as the following example tries to show12:25-26:

“His [He] indeed was a fine character and his kindness, courtesy and generosity made him the best loved of all the Dutch governors at the Cape. The new governor was nothing if not honest and did everything possible to check the corruption of his subordinates and to counteract any official tendency to introduce into the Cape the luxurious way of life in the East by the imposition of sumptuary laws”.

This “curbing” by Ryk Tulbagh of officials’ lifestyles was clearly to generate extra money to fill the coffers of the VOC (which was moving into bankcrupcy). Moreover, how on earth could he be best loved by the KhoiSan whom he had allowed to be slaughtered without limitation by the White frontiersmen [See The official termination of the KhoiSan frontiersmen. The uncontrolled killings (terminations) of KhoiSan were extremely reflected during the offices of Ryk Tulbagh (1751-1771), Swellengrebel’s successor, and that of Baron Joachim van Plettenberg (1773-1785)].

Of characteristics as leaders who were fanatically driven and infected with an incurable need to produce sustained results for the Cape and its people, to make the colony great, to take on opportunities, to study in-depth its various problems, to nourish and to propagate a lifestyle among the inhabitants and a “nation-culture” of high ethics, and to collect an excellent team of democratic confidants around them to make their leadership of top-quality, there were no real signs in the study of the profiles of the various executive leaders of the period 1652 to 1795. More precisely: not a single one of these leaders reached the status of a world-statesman after leaving the Cape, neither did they even reach the status of a good executive leader in terms of the appraisal checklist.8,9,12,22,31,40

Most of all, these early executive political leaders missed out on South Africa’s indigenous realities: of different races with different cultures, religions, customs, traditions, beliefs and development stages they seem to have had very little understanding. Furthermore, they missed out on how to think outside their color cognition of Whiteness as the only good “color” of a human being, ignoring and missing out on the immense energy locked within Black-empowerment, that was waiting to overrun the White frontiersmen’s dreams, arrogance and sense of reality (although Black empowerment was only enacted in South Africa in 1994, it was clearly visible in 1795). The respect of the personal and human rights of non-Whites and the international law on territories (in terms of which many European Wars had already been fought in the 1600s) were totally absent in the South African context of an exclusive European thinking, planning and doing in the period 1652 to 1795, with regard to lawful land-ownership. Land-ownership from 1652 onward formed the basis for racial tension and hate. Instead of addressing it with wisdom, insight, justice and a balanced objectivity, the issue was addressed by killing, subordination and dehumanizing of the non-Whites and the conquering of their land. Knowing very well that the persons who control the economics of a country also rule its politics, and they who are in charge of the politics of a country own the economics, these early Cape executive leaders kept the non-Whites completely out of the political scenario (most of the Cape’s White inhabitants experienced this too). There were not the slightest signs in the mindsets of the early Cape executive political leaders of honest development of all the Cape’s people. These political inclinations of autocracy and intolerance against subordinates, mostly of course against non-Whites, were transferred and internalized into the mindsets of the Cape’s White inhabitants by their own bad experiences at the hands of the Cape’s corrupt officials, as well as the bad examples set by the corruption practiced not only by the officials, but also by the commanders and governors. The contamination of the mindsets of the Cape’s inhabitants by serious delinquency such as murder is evident by the growing uncontrollable and unruly behaviour in the early 1700s of the White frontiersmen, and their practice of a misplaced Christian religion which was contaminated by extreme racial politics. (With regard to the Black frontiersmen’s behavior there is also evidence of growing uncontrollable and unruly behaviour in the early 1700s, not more tolerant or less murderous as that of the White Frontiersmen’s actions).8,9,12,22,31,40

The fate of the missionaries of the Moravian Brethren, during the sojourn (1737-1747) of the missionary George Schmidt at Genadendal, confirms the contaminated extreme racial politics on all levels of the White society. Geen reports as follows on this inclination12:24:

Prior to Swellengrebel’s appointment, the Moravian Brethren, a Protestant sect with a considerable following in Bohemia and parts of Germany, sent George Schmidt to the Cape as a missionary to work among the Hottentots. He founded a flourishing mission at Baviaan’s Kloof, to be known later as Genadendal, where he laboured from 1737 to 1747 to teach the Hottentots the Christian faith and to raise their standards of living and work. However, when he wished to baptize some converts, he roused the enmity not only of the ministers of the Dutch Reformed Church, but also of the colonists, who did not look upon missionary endeavour with much favour. There was no religious toleration in the colony and so George Schmidt, who was a Lutheran, was forced to abandon his work and return to Europe. It was not until almost half a century later that the Moravians returned to South Africa and took up their work at Genadendal again.

This political outcome of 1747, contaminating the mindset of many of the early Cape Whites, is what Louw4 refers to in the Afrikaners’ lifestyle as a White Christianity versus a Black Christianity and a White Jesus versus a Black Jesus.

The executive political leaders at the Cape for the period 1652 to 1795 undoubtedly created a trend by setting an example of bad leadership. The first leaders were persons who lacked integrity and morality, creating a vicious cycle of flawed political, social, religious and political thinking and behaviour among many of the Cape Whites. Sadly, this mindset that obscured sound thinking, reasoning and behaviour, also developed in the non-Whites, creating manifold problems such as racial hatred, intolerance and most devastatingly, ideas of revenge against Whites for the treatment they received during the country’s political history of 1652 to 1795.

The checklist makes it easy to classify a plethora of political behaviours by political leaders and regimes from 1652 to 1795 as bad when measured against its criteria.

From this article it is clear that there is an urgent need to evaluate also the executive political leaders and regimes from 1796 to 2018 (μ=53). The intention is to do this as a separate project with time (Project Two). At the moment some political scientists are not yet convinced of the value of statistical political science with respect to responsible political analysis and sound governmental planning, which means that funding for such research as Project Two is limited. At present many political scientists still rely on intellectual analysis and opinion for political comments and predictions. The subjectivity and superficiality of such commentary make it dubious, even dangerous.

In light of the above appraisal of political leaders and regimes for the period 1652 to 1795 (μ=30), it is important to mention that the Democratic Alliance (DA) successfully uses a similar approach to judge the performances the ANC-regime’s leaders and their standard of governance over the last ten years according to a basic 10-point scale. However, it seems as if the ANC’s elite have never taken on any of the lessons that come out of such appraisals. The DA itself has failed to measure their own performances as a party and that of their leaders with the same diligence.

The checklist (see Part 4: A basic checklist for the appraisal of executive political leaders and regimes) presented in this research, aims to evaluate retrospective the performances of executive political leaders and regimes, in this instance specifically for the period 1652 to 1795. Its contribution will be much greater if it can be standardized with reliability and validity as a checklist not only for retrospective and present-day perspective evaluations of the performances of executive political leaders and regimes, but also specifically for sifting and selecting South African politicians for top public posts, such as president and vice-president. The Canadian government’s selection of its top managers through an approach known as the Career Assignment Programme (CAP) is a good example.44 Gregory’s44 writing gives a good guideline of how we can get rid of political crooks long before they reach the gates of the political world and at the same time cultivate leaders of excellence.

It is doubtful if the South African government or political parties would ever subscribe to a selection programme such as the CAP or a checklist such as this one. It would mean that political crooks would be locked out of state capture and political abuse. Their primary argument will be that such a process would be undemocratic (it violates citizens’ rights and invades the politician’s privacy). In practice (as we have seen from this research) the opposite is true: such an appraisal checklist is democratic as it forces undemocratic persons out of the democratic government.

5. Conclusions

The two objectives of this study were to discover whether the South African executive political leaders and their regimes of the period 1652 to 1795 (μ=30) had, during their time in office, made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people; and to determine whether the behaviour of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 as leaders and as persons were extraordinary and impeccable.

The conclusions that are drawn from this study are presented in accordance with the aims and hypotheses as postulated in 2.2 to 2.5:

H1: The South African executive political leaders and their regimes of the period 1652 to 1795 had during their time in office made extraordinary contributions to the country and its people.

The findings of this study show that the South African executive political leaders and their regimes of the period 1652 to 1795 had during their time in office failed to make extraordinary contributions to the country and its people. # Hypothesis H1 must be rejected.

H2: To determine whether the behaviours of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 as leaders and as persons were extraordinary and impeccable.

The findings of this study show that the behaviors of the South African executive political leaders of the period 1652 to 1795 as leaders and as persons failed to be extraordinary and impeccable. # Hypothesis H2 must be rejected.

South Africa is a beautiful country, with beautiful people and many, many other beautiful things, but it missed one essential component in its being for the period 1652 to 1795, as the following African Proverb tells us: If there is character, ugliness becomes beauty; if there is none, beauty becomes ugliness. This character seems to have missed out most of the executive political leaders and regimes of the period 1652 to 1795.

6. References

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  4. Louw GP. The crisis of the Afrikaners. Beau Bassin, Mauritius: Lambert; 2018.
  5. Louw GP. Is the dissolution of the Afrikaner tribe only a century away? Part 2: Historical determinants and role players in the establishment and maintenance of racial discrimination in the mindsets of Afrikaners. Ensovoort, 37(2017); 9:2:1-44.
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  30. Maree K, Van der Westhuizen C. Head start in designing research proposals in social sciences. Cape Town: Juta; 2009.
  31. Afrikaners are Black [Internet]. [Cited 2018 Mar. 8]. Available from http://www.news24/Afrikaners-are-black-20130223
  32. Boëseken AJ. Jan van Riebeeck en sy stigtingswerk: 1652-1662. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid-Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.
  33. Louw GP. Is the dissolution of the Afrikaner tribe only a century away? Part 6: The preparedness of Afrikaners to deal with the threats and challenges of the new South Africa. Ensovoort, 37(2017);11(2):1-51.
  34. The story of the first two ‘coloured’ governors at the Cape-Simon and Willem. [Internet]. [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from https://camissapeople.wordpress.com/the-story-of-the-first-two-coloured-governors-at-the-cape/
  35. Simon van der Stel. [Internet]. [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simon_van_der_Stel
  36. I’m Not Black, I’m Coloured. [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from http://www.capecolouer.com
  37. Know your nation: who was Simon van der Stel? [Cited 2018 Apr.18]. Available from https://www.w24.co.za/know-your-nation-who-was-simon-van-der-stel-2017001-2
  38. Barber M. How to run a Government. London: Penguin; 2015.
  39. Chomsky N. Masters of Mankind. London: Penguin; 2015.
  40. Martinez R. Creating Freedom. Edinburgh: Canongate; 2016.
  41. Van der Merwe PJ. Van Verversingspos tot Landbou-Kolonie: 1662 – 1707. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.
  42. Louw GP. Is the dissolution of the Afrikaner tribe only a century away? Part 1: Who is the Afrikaner? Ensovoort, 37(2017); 9(1):1-46.
  43. Powell J. Talking to Terrorists. London: Penguin; 2014.
  44. Beyers C. Binnelandse Beroering en Ondergang van die Kompanjie, 1779-1795. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.).
  45. Gregory RJ. Psychological Testing: History, Principles and Applications. New York: Pearson; 2004.


Not commissioned; Externally peer-reviewed.


The author declares that he has no competing interest.


The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa.

An appraisal of the executive political leaders and regimes of the South Africa: 1652 to 2018. Part 3: Factors that influence the development of executive political leaders

Gabriel P Louw

iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6190-8093

Research Associate, Focus Area: Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa

Corresponding Author:

Prof. Dr. GP Louw

Email: profgplouw@gmail.com

Keywords: Afrikanerism, appraisal, Boers, development, factor, influence, leader, political, regime.

Ensovoort, volume 38 (2018), number 7:1

1. Background

1.1 Introduction

An Englishman apologizes when you step on his foot. A Frenchman berates you when he steps on yours.1:22

These words from Mort Rosenblum’s1 book Mission to civilize. The French Way, seem to innocently make fun of the French who are known for their frankness. However, there is something deeper to the quote. It gives us an idea of how people’s mindsets are formed, their possible inherent or learned dispositions. People’s mindsets influence how they think, plan, make decisions, and behave in the face of challenges, needs, demands and threats.

In Culture Shock! A Guide to Customs and Etiquette – France, Sally Adamson Taylor writes2:8:

The French have a profound sense of democracy. They believe that all people deserve equal consideration and that individual dignity is important. But like all rest of us they have their own definitions of what is dignified.

Her remark focuses the attention on the individuality found in the human race: there are factors that shape every person’s emotions and thinking and that drive the person to see things from a particular point of view. This phenomenon means that there are many dimensions to every situation. People handle situations based on inherent traits and group influences. When one compares the Frenchman’s view on the dignity of others to that of the Englishman, they seem to differ. The English show irrational hostility and aggression without provocation. However, this is predictable when one studies the internalized cultural factors present in the mindsets of Frenchmen.

Rosenblum1 unintentionally provides a good explanation of how humans show certain kinds of behaviours to others and how people experience such behaviours. His caricatures of the Englishman and the Frenchman present two generalizations, and the behaviours that accompany these generalized characteristics are predictable in most situations in terms of the English and French moulds. Certain attitudes, customs, thinking, views and opinions become apparent. These are determined by both genetics and experience.

The person who stands at the receiving end of the behaviours that Rosenblum describes, may ultimately have a negative view of the Frenchman and a positive view of the Englishman, which means that culture also experiences how groups are perceived.

Our exposure to different life experiences and examples cause internalized ideas, and the ideas become our disposition. What internal factor causes the differences in the behaviour of the Englishman and the Frenchman? How did they each acquire, select, master and internalize certain unique personal characteristics and behaviour? 1,2

Various researchers have ventured explanations for people’s behaviours. When it comes to political behaviours, there are for instance Herodotus’s3 view on revenge and counter-revenge, Palkhivala’s5 wooden-headedness and Martinez’s4 lottery of birth. These ideas are discussed in the results section.

From above it is clear that the factors that shape human behaviour are much more complex and comprehensive than what explanations can consider. The factors that form the foundation for the behaviours of Black and White South Africans and that drove the past and are driving the present are no exception. These complexities require focused analysis and description.

The aim of this article is to put the factors that influence the development of executive political leaders in perspective.

2. Method

The research was done by means of a literature review. This method has the aim of building a viewpoint from the available evidence as the research develops. This approach is used in modern historical research where there is a lack of an established body of research, as is the case with the factors that influence the development and behaviours of executive political leaders and their regimes of governance in South Africa. The sources include articles from 2017 to 2018, books for the period 1961 to 2018 and newspapers for the period 2016 to 2018.6-8

The research findings are presented in narrative format.

  1. Results

3.1 The Herodotus Rules

Negative human behaviour can be explained in terms of the Herodotus Rules of Revenge and Counter-revenge3: a cycle where memories of traumatic experiences of the past, actions delivered by certain persons or groups become part of the conscious and unconscious worldview of an individual at the receiving end. When the two parties again encounter each other, the former victim retaliates, causing an action-reaction cycle. It becomes a vicious cycle of actions and reactions, often passed down to future generations.

The Herodotus3 rules are valuable for understanding and describing certain kinds of behaviour, but as a tool to reconcile groups.

Herodotus’3 six rules provide that we should keep to six rules to stay in power and to prevent future retaliation. The rules are:

  •     Always act with fairness and wisdom towards subjects;
  •     Empower each subject politically, legally, socially, and economically;
  •     Do not favour subjects or act in own interest;
  •     Act with self-control at all times;
  •     Do not be self-enriching at the expense of his subjects;
  •     Don’t abuse power or practice emotional and physical exploitation or abuse.

In practice these six rules mean: 1) history repeats itself; and 2) the contraventions of these rules create hatred that spells tragedy, even after many centuries had passed. People have the inclination to punish a certain group categorically, meaning that both guilty and innocent parties suffer. A good example is the mafia in Sicily’s tendency to take bloody revenge on certain families for generations.3

In South Africa the factors that resulted in Apartheid can also be explained in terms of the Herodotus Rules. As a result of conflict between Blacks and farmers on the border, travelling farmers and the Voortrekker Boers in the Cape Colony and the Boer republics, the Afrikaners developed many times a hatred for all Blacks. They therefore created a policy of discrimination. The internalized perception of Blacks being “dangerous” became further engrained in Afrikaners until they came to view their behaviours as justified and correct. It further intensified and the racism escalated into Apartheid and its atrocities against Blacks as revenge for the past. These internalized ideas were also inherent to the Afrikaner. It shaped the thinking, planning and behaviours of the political leaders. They had to satisfy their Afrikaner followers and their selfish interests.9

Since 1994 the Black executive political leaders (now the rulers of South Africa and the Afrikaners) have been caught in the counter-revenge part of the cycle. They see the Afrikaners as “bad” persons who deserve punishment for Apartheid.3,9

3.2 Palkhivala’s5 wooden-headedness

Nani Palkhivala5, a renowned Indian academic, lawyer, diplomat, politician, philosopher and writer reflects on the bad behaviour of political leaders from all races and ethnic groups, educated and less educated, rich and poor, urban and rural.5,9

Palkhivala5 sees the problematic behaviours of groups against other groups as a direct result of a variety of established negative traits, perceptions and dispositions internalized in the mindsets of aggressive groups. Political leaders use these traits of their followers to their advantage. Palkhivala5 sees this mechanism as part of the leader’s character. Leaders often act stupidly, self-promoting, and opportunistic. He16 defines this mindset as wooden-headedness.5,9

3.3 The inability of groups to repent and be humble

Mort Rosenblum1 unintentionally focuses the attention on a complex and comprehensive human problem, namely the factors that drive behaviour. The two gentlemen he describes are arguably human beings with good cognitive, conative and affective abilities who can learn from experiences and examples. Yet, as Rosenblum’s1 description indicates, they show different behaviours. What he describes is a universal phenomenon that cause problems when it is extrapolated to the collective.5,9

Rosenblum’s1 “Englishman-Frenchman behaviour model” merges the views of Herodotus3 and Palkhivala5 in identifying the possible determinants that steer the political actions of groups, especially the roles of their leaders. Rosenblum1 identifies a third dynamic that both Herodotus3 and Palkhivala5 failed to describe and that plays an important role in the reconciliation process. This dynamic involves pardonableness, forgetfulness, repentance, humbleness and life-enrichment9.

These five factors or determinants, separately or in combination, act as negative energies in political conflicts that are driven by a “wrong of the past.” It leads to further evildoing, worsening an already contaminated situation. Pardonableness, forgetfulness, repentance, humbleness and life-enrichment per se are sometimes present where persons or groups experience psycho-emotional growth due to suffering. They ultimately reach self-actualization and personal maturity so that they do goodness to others. This neutralizes aggression and hostility towards others. This positivity is in line what Herodotus3 prescribed for a good ruler. However, very few people in history have been able to master these skills.

The discussion now turns to two examples where suffering failed to bring such growth, namely that of the Israeli Jews and the South African Afrikaners. The lack of repentance, humbleness and life-enrichment and an inability to learn from sufferings is prominent here. The leaders in these two cases resemble Palkhivala’s wooden-headedness.5,9-12

3.3.1 The Israeli Jews versus the Arabs and Muslims

The Jews seem to repeat the same pattern of behaviour over and over. Despite their suffering during their exile to Persia and their enslavement in Egypt, or perhaps because of it, they commit the same atrocities and genocide that they suffered for so long at the hands of the Persians and the Egyptians. They have not learned from their experiences. In fact, they even topped the severity of the crimes committed against them.9-16

After the fall of Jerusalem in the 1000s, the Jews were once more displaced. They spread all over the world, but they suffered atrocities and genocide, especially at the hand of Hitler and Stalin in the twentieth century. After their slow return to their “New Israel” from the 1930s onwards and the subsequent creation of the State of Israel with Jewish rule, they started committing atrocities against the Palestinians and other Arabs inside Israel. Their behaviour showed the same pattern than their earlier murderous behaviour towards the inhabitants of Israel when they had returned from Persia and Egypt centuries back.9-16

This history makes it seem as if Jews are predisposed to such behaviour. Certain questions come to mind: Can the Israeli Jews’ pattern of behaviour be attributed to an inborn genetic trait that has been driving the Jews for thousands of years to do commit the same atrocities over and over?

There seem to be additional contributing factors to the behaviour of the Jews. Their repeated exposure to discrimination, cruelty and attempts at genocide over long periods in Egypt, Persia, Europe of the 1930s and onwards, as well as their direct confrontations with the Arabs and Muslims in Israel, may play a significant role in their treatment of non-Jews. Could their experiences have created preconceived ideas of how other groups would act towards them? 9-16

All the engrained perceptions resulted in a unique Jewish identity that includes Jewish knowledge, bio-heritance, beliefs, traditions and prejudices. One could ask whether Jewish behaviour stems from nature, nurture, or a mix. Their aggression is usually focused on Arabs and Muslims. Is this aggression an uncontrolled, unchangeable characteristic of Jews?

There is no explanation for why Menahem Begin10 (a Prime Minister of Israel) and Irgun Zvani Leumi killed seventy-six innocent Arabs at markets and other public places in Israel in July 1938 without any provocation or hostility from the Arabs (There are many similar pre-World War II examples of bombs placed in Arab movie theatres, sniping at Arabs and trains carrying Arabs, and murdering innocent Arabs in cold blood).10 It is as if an uncontrollable beast – driven by instinct but stripped of a sound mind – has been in charge of Jewish Israeli leaders. The South African writer and poet, NP van Wyk Louw, referred to this beast as Raka, the Beast.17

Years of suffering did not bring insight and positive growth for Jews so that hostility and aggression against Arabs and Moslems would be replaced by pardonableness, forgetfulness, repentance, humbleness and life-enrichment. They have lacked political leaders who could take the contaminated Jewish part out of the Jewish Israelite foundation or jihadism out of Zionism.9,13,15,16

Many Jewish Israeli leaders have used the Jewish identity to garner support for wrongdoing to Arabs and Muslims. They exploited the ordinary Jewish Israeli’s fear of the “Arab danger” and the “Muslim danger” to fire up countrywide wrongdoings against Arabs and Moslems inside and outside Israel. Any individual or group protest or resistance to these leaders was quickly and effectively wiped out. The present actions of the Jewish Israeli leaders against Palestinians are much worse than that of the Afrikaner Nationalist leaders during the heyday of Apartheid, and there is not a single indication that it would change as long as the “Jewish” Israel is in existence.13-15

3.3.2 The Christian Afrikaners versus the Christian Blacks

The Jews, it seems, are not alone in carrying some kind of a “gene” that causes them to constantly do wrong to other persons and groups. The proto-Afrikaners and Afrikaners, like the Jews, experienced suffering at the hands of the British Empire and native Black tribes, although over a shorter period and of far less intensity. The Blacks in turn also experienced suffering at the hands of the British Empire, but atrocities at the hands of the Afrikaners for a century or two was added to their fate. The tragic thing is that when the Afrikaners were freed from British oppression in 1908 and founded the Union of South Africa in 1910, they not only left the Blacks out in the political cold, but instituted a policy of suppression far more cruel than the suffering the Afrikaners endured under the British flag or from the Blacks. When the Afrikaners took political power in 1948, their behaviour against the Blacks became even worse. They did immense psychological and physical harm to Blacks with Apartheid. The Afrikaners did not learn anything positive from their own past experiences. Instead of altruism, they showed hatred against the Blacks and lacked sympathy and empathy. They showed no sign of psychological and emotional growth towards repentance, humbleness and life-enrichment or unconditional pardon and forgetting. The 1994-dispensation is not the result of insight, they did not have a choice but to surrender, but this time not to the rule of the hatred British, but to the “Black danger”.9,18-25

A pattern of behaviour is noticeable here, like with the Jews. The only difference is that the basis for discrimination is not religion, but race. The Blacks are predominantly Christian, like the Afrikaners themselves.13-15

When we look at the pattern of political, social, economical and psychological wrongdoing of the Afrikaners, we arrive at the same questions as with the Jewish Israelis:

  •     Can the Afrikaners’ pattern of behaviour be attributed to an inborn genetic trait that is unique to the Afrikaner identity and that drives them to commit the same atrocities over and over? Or;
  •     Do the actions of Afrikaners stem from the suffering they experienced, these memories being passed from generation to generation?
  •     Have the Afrikaners internalized early interactions as fixed irrational perceptions of how they should act towards certain groups?
  •     Do the Afrikaners’ genetic traits and experiences function separately as factors, or are they intertwined?

In my book on the Afrikaners, The crisis of the Afrikaners9, 2018, I debate the influence of genetic inheritance and life experiences on the Afrikaners’ racism towards Blacks, especially with reference to their executive political leaders promoting racism9:92:

The proto-Afrikaners and Afrikaners learned that certain actions and behaviours are crucial for survival as individuals and as a group. They learned this from their hardships, unhappiness and political experiences, and from broader negative South African events. They also had governments who set a bad example. As a result, they embraced negative behaviours despite the injustice it does to other persons outside the Afrikaner group. Over the years they came to see these behaviours as essential to their survival (especially during the era of the nationalist Afrikaners after 1948). Discrimination and ethnic domination of persons from mixed races, Blacks, and even Whites from other ethnic groups, however, inhumane and morally wrong, became a learned survival strategy. As a result of the successes, satisfaction and compensation it brought, it became entrenched as the most applicable and correct approach to other groups. The outcome for the Afrikaner has been and is to a certain extent that there is only a single golden rule for their political, economic, social and personal lives: ‘you are ruling’ versus ‘you are being ruled’ and ‘if you are the minority you must be the ruler as long as possible, regardless of the consequences’.

The skewed thinking of many Afrikaners during Apartheid is evident from their actions. The executive political leaders capitalized on this and offered a bad example. Their behaviour in the form of Apartheid is not a fatalistic outcome over which the Afrikaner leaders did not have any control. It was a considered act to gain power and to enrich themselves at the costs of the politically and economically defenceless Blacks. Indeed, the Afrikaner leaders used the past to create political will and justification for Grand Apartheid from 1948 to 1994.9,26,27

There are correlations between the Jews and the Afrikaners. Can we ever forget Eugene de Kock and his hitmen and the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders who ordered him to do the killings? For some Afrikaner executive political leaders the Afrikaner “identity” was a dream come true: it gave them a way to manipulate the masses.9,26,28

The tragedy is that Raka the Beast also seems to have taken hold of many of the country’s current Black political leaders. Like the Afrikaner leaders, they are blind to realities of South Africa. They lack the ability to think beyond their cultural identities and histories. Many exploit Black citizens’ fear of the “White danger” to capitalize on reverse racism. In South Africa the vicious circle of racism is, like the religious cycle in Jewish Israel, just unbreakable.

3.4 Martinez’s lottery of birth

Raoul Martinez4, in his comprehensive book Creating freedom: power, control and the fight for our future, 2016, sees the past (which includes the two components life experiences and genetic inheritance) as a very strong driver of people’s daily behaviour and one of the main reason why people do the same things over and over.

Martinez4 argues that it is difficult for any group and its members who were born into an established society to break free from the past. The past offers specific internalized values, traditions, customs, beliefs, etc., to which people are exposed in a specific community from birth. This implies that if the same person were to grow up in a completely different community with contrary values, traditions, customs, beliefs, etc., that person could undoubtedly be formed according to that group’s own, different mould. In addition, each person is burdened with a genetic inheritance which limits and blocks certain successful behaviours.

Of course people can change with time, but only under certain optimal conditions. They have to gradually unlearn certain things and be desensitized to previous exposures and experiences. Martinez’s4 focus is on the fact that a group as a whole to can do some things and others not as a result of their established past. His focus is not so much on the group as it moves in the greater society. Martinez4 treats the individual who can shed his past as an exception to the rule of the group, which is imprisoned by their past and their genetics.

There are a few differences between Martinez’s views4 and my conclusions on people’s behaviours, including the behaviours of group leaders. The past plays a prominent role in both the opinions. For Martinez4 the past inserts many limitations for persons because of a rigid underbuild outside the person’s control and intentions. There is a strong focus on conditioning when he reasons on human behaviour. His view of some kind of “birth right” means that certain fatalism cannot be ignored in his hypothesis. I9 rather see the past as a point of departure into the future, not necessary an absolute limitation. This focus is influenced by cognitive and reality psychology.

The prominent question at this stage is still why many Afrikaners and Blacks, especially the executive political leaders, continue racist behaviour.

Martinez4 tries to explain this behaviour as a result of the specific environment in which people are born. He calls this the tragic fate of people as they have a basic inability to escape. Although he writes in general, this insight is applicable to the behaviours of Afrikaners and Blacks. He writes4:3:

We do not choose to exist. We do not choose the environment we will grow up in. We do not choose to be born Hindu, Christian or Muslim, into a war-zone or peaceful middle-class suburb, into starvation or luxury. We do not choose our parents, or whether they’ll be happy or miserable, knowledgeable or ignorant, healthy or sickly, attentive or neglectful. The knowledge we possess, the beliefs we hold, the tastes we develop, the traditions we adopt, the opportunities we enjoy, the work we do – the very lives we lead – depend entirely on our biological inheritance and environment to which we are exposed. This is the lottery of birth.

Martinez4 argues that the society in which people grow up absorbs them as members, taking their potential and shaping them (without much choice) into its mould (behavioural psychologists would say doctrine). He writes further4:3-4:

Early interactions, the treatment we receive and the behaviour we observe, begin the process of constructing an identity. Gradually, imperceptibly, we are induced into a community. We might have developed loyalty to any group, nation, ideology or religion, learned any language, practised any social customs, or partaken in any act of barbarism. Cultural transformation is a powerful process, one that produced both beautiful and ugly outcomes.

According to Martinez’s4 theory, one can argue that both the Afrikaners and Blacks were born into a certain society in a certain country at a certain time that was saturated with a racist pathology in its foundation from 1652. As Martinez4 puts it, they drew the wrong number when playing the lottery of birth. This doomed number was final and not returnable. The number gives as prize growing up as individual in a conflicting racial society. But Martinez’s4 view does not imply total fatalism: people can think for themselves and do things as they want, but they are to an extent “limited” by their genetic inheritance and life experiences. They are rooted in the communities into which they were born in the biological matter from which they had developed.

The billionaire Warren Buffett4 also postulates that most people find their destiny largely by luck (good luck if it leads to a good life; bad luck when it leads to a life of suffering). For Buffett4 people’s destinies are largely determined at the moment of their birth, where they were born, who had been their parents, their gender and their native intellect. These determinants steer people into domains (with some platforms) and on life paths (camped off by high fences most of the time). It is not easy to leave, while certain genetic determinants inherited from parents and learned perceptions forced down by the community rigidly determine the lives of most people. Political leaders know how to use these determinants to meet their followers’ needs (and limitations) and how to steer their followers’ behaviours in their, the leaders, own interest.

Thus, in terms of the above construct, let us call it the Buffett-Martinez concept4, most Afrikaners and most Blacks (and the leaders of both groups) were unlucky enough to be born in South Africa to Afrikaner or Black parents, to be raised in an Afrikaner or a Black society created initially by Dutch colonialism, saturated in European racism. Theoretically Apartheid and racism are sad outcomes that have been pre-programmed into the Afrikaners and Blacks by historical developments. They are doomed by their unlucky allocation of the wrong number in the lottery of birth; or, seen from another point of view, they are moulded as two specific racial groups caught in the South African society’s negative ideology. They were unwillingly and unfortunately caught in an ongoing racial conflict; a situation outside of their own control.4,9,24,25

  1. Discussion

4.1 Factors that influence the development of executive political leaders

4.1.1 Introduction

The profiles of the various executive political leaders who governed South Africa from 1652 to 2018 are profoundly linked to racial and ethnic interactions and conflicts. At the centre there is domination and discrimination, mostly in an extreme form. The 1652 establishment of a refreshment station at the Cape, seen from a political view, was a non-racial and autocratic act. The management entailed that the early European workers were exposed to a Dutch governmental system without any political say or any representation. It was initially meant to be a temporary entity, similar to a modern business with an employer and a manager in charge of various employees. Initially the political relationship was White-to-White (workers from various European ethnic groups, but mostly Dutch, overseen by Europeans with more authority). The first class system was one of seniors and juniors, bosses and workers, although far less prominent than in established communities in the Netherlands. The informal management of the station changed to a more formal statutory system with its development into an agricultural colony by the 1660s. This heralded the slow import of Black slaves as labourers. The vague inter-ethnic social classification between Europeans was also extended to the Blacks, who, as slaves, were stripped of their civil rights and social status. The differentiation of social classes became sharply defined in terms of race. A “soft” racial differentiation started to make place for an “extra hard” racial differentiation. Class discrimination diminished compared with the new racial class differentiation where poverty and a dehumanization of Blacks started to play a dominant role. The Godske-declaration and other regulations on race relations prepared the way for Apartheid in the political, social and work environment. Discrimination against Blacks in time became entrenched as normal. Later Apartheid was born and it became a permanent part of the mindsets of Blacks and Whites.9,18,29

It is erroneous to argue that the Whites also had no political rights at the Early Cape. There were early attempts to give statutory protection to Whites. They were free to marry whom they chose and they were free to work for an income. Black slaves were stripped of their citizen’s rights and human dignity. They became objects, equal to animals (they could be bought and sold like animals). They were ostracized socially based on their unacceptable racial characteristics by the richer social higher classes, who were of course only White. Racial discrimination was born, with White assigned supremacy and Black inferiority, as Boon27 puts it directly and honestly: “Blacks are no good. Whites are good.” This led to the gradual spread of White racial discrimination against and domination of all the non-White sectors of the society in the Cape. It became a worldview amplified by the Whites’ particular brand of the Christian religion.9,21,26,27,32,38

However much it is being denied, it is still part of the lives of many Afrikaner Nationalists today. Their private conversations often contradict their public claim of non-racism. These racial influences shaped the politics up to 1994 and beyond. Apartheid itself understandably created a reaction to racial discrimination among Blacks, specifically the Afrikaners. This vicious circle of hate, driven by actions and counter-actions of the two opponents, still shapes the country’s politics – and not always for the good. On the other hand Blacks have good reason to be filled with remorse about pre-1994 South Africa. If the Herodotus Rules are anything to go by, South Africa has a long way to go.3,9,21,26,27,29,32,38

Within this environment, the abuse of the fears of the general population has become the primary tool of political leaders. Their own mental and social constructions also contaminate their ability to make sound political decisions and to be good executive political leaders.9,29

4.1.2 The impact of public ideologies on executive political leaders

Two overwhelming but opposing political dogmas played an important role in the formation of White–Black politics. First, it is important to take into consideration the Grand Apartheid of the Afrikaner Nationalists, created and driven by the NP and the AB’s executive political leaders since the beginning of the 1900s. Second, the ANC as a liberation movement active from the beginning of the 1900s is equally important in the formation of modern South African politics.9.26,29

Both political groupings reflect the ideas of an early core of political leaders who over time engrained their political views into their followers. The Afrikaner Nationalist ideology found expression in the Malan Manifesto, and the ANC’s ideology were formed around their various charters, of which the Freedom Charter is the most prominent.9,21,31,32 The influence of post-1948 Afrikanerism and Apartheid on the executive political leaders of the NP

The start of the Afrikaners’ political ideology on racial discrimination basically lies with the founding of the refreshment station at the Cape 1652. It was strengthened over time by the British discrimination against the proto-Afrikaners in the Cape Colony and the genocide of the Boers during the Second Anglo-Boer War. During all these phases of history the Black population was viewed as a threat to the existence of the proto-Afrikaners. The Blacks became the scapegoats for all that could go wrong in the country.9,23

When one looks critically at the period 1652 to 1902, the proto-Afrikaners’ political history reflects various traumas that contributed to negative racial beliefs.9,33-37

The most clearly formulated outline of the Afrikaners’ political ideology of racial discrimination is perhaps the DF Malan Manifesto of 194832 that introduced and directed Grand Apartheid up to 1994. The post-1948 Afrikaner behaviour is founded on this manifesto. It became the political Bible of the Afrikaner Nationalists preaching a redesigned history and identity. The Afrikaner Nationalists and their South Africa were depicted as a people similar to the Jews and Israel in terms of Biblical predestination: God’s chosen people. The 1948-leaders of the Afrikaner Nationalists very successful contaminated the minds of most Afrikaners, turning them into Pure Afrikaners. A young generation of Afrikaner Nationalist leaders spread Afrikanerism to every corner of South Africa. In the early 1950s Afrikanerism was already well established in the country.9,29,32,34,37

The Malan Manifesto is subsequently discussed to gain an understanding of the psyche of the Afrikaner Nationalist political leaders, starting with DF Malan, JG Strydom, HF Verwoerd, BJ Vorster, PW Botha and ending with FW de Klerk. The discussion also sheds light on their involvement in extreme political and human wrongs to Blacks, dissident Afrikaners and other Whites between 1948 and 1994.9,21,26,32

When comparing the political intentions of the Malan Manifesto with the political intentions of the Freedom Charter (or any of the other Charters) of the ANC, the Freedom Charter looks like an angel’s message directly from heaven. The Malan Manifesto was not much different from the manifestos of Hitler’s Nazis or Mussolini’s Fascists. One should remember that Malan, Strydom, Verwoerd and Vorster were all Nazi sympathizers. The Manifesto positions the NP and the AB as the liberators of the Afrikaners. Their intent was similar to those of the rising ANC in 1948, if not more extreme. Both political groups knew that factions ruled, not vision, and that the political policy that wins the race does not have to be the best one, but the one that is the best funded. Malan and his cronies knew this very well and knew to steer their political doctrine towards those people (the pure Afrikaners) who feel vulnerable and exposed because they do not control their own fate.9,21,26,31,38,39

What saved the NP and its radical political leaders in 1948 from counter-actions was the passivity of a war-tired world; strong sympathy from Europe and the USA for the Afrikaners as the last White race in Africa; the support of White supremacy worldwide; and possibly the most important, the presence of the world-class leader JC Smuts, who was still active in some way in the South African politics.

DF Malan was a Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde of sorts. This became clear as early as 1948 as some of his actions resembled the manipulations and false undertakings of Adolf Hitler before and immediately after he took power in Germany. This indicates the possible presence of personal, psycho- and social pathology, not only in Malan himself, but also his political partners who made Malan’s political, social and economical plans a reality in South Africa.9,21,22,27,32

In 1948, immediately after the NP took power with Malan as the executive political leader, he gave a parliamentary undertaking not to infringe on the democratic rights and freedoms that the people of South Africa enjoyed in 1948. He assured citizens that his government underwrites the “Western conception of democracy.” But if one reads more about what the Malan said in Parliament in 1948, then one reads after this his 1948 Manifesto, it becomes clear that he was a wolf in sheep’s clothing. The political events during his office testifies to this.9 Bernard Friedman21, in his book: Smuts, a reappraisal, writes an eye-opening account of the built-in principles of extreme political radicalism in the NP and the party’s intentions as a true liberation movement to destroy all established systems and to promote only the NP leaders’ aims from 1948 onwards. These radical intentions, are characteristics that stayed with the NP’s executive political leaders as long as the NP ruled South Africa.9,21,25,27,32,39

Friedman21 reports on Malan’s personal undertaking in the Parliament as follows21:75:

We also stand for the Western conception of democracy…The Western conception is that in the first place we must bear in mind the rights and freedom of the individual. The individual has human rights and nothing should be allowed to infringe upon his human rights… The individual has the right to live; he has the right of physical movement, of action. He has the right of freedom of thought; he has the right of exercising a free conscience; he has the right to freedom of religion; he has the right to express himself and his opinions. He can do so in public life where he takes part in the politics of his country. He can do so through the press; he can do so by taking part in the political struggle. He can call into being political parties and in that way join issue in public life with others whose views differ from his.

Nothing became of Malan’s promises, especially equality for Blacks under Apartheid (1948-1994). Malan was a political liar. What makes it so tragic is that he was regarded as god sent, a reverend and a God’s-man in the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC).9,21 However, this “religious” falsehood in public is not a surprise: radical racism was also part of the DRC Christian dogma, with one intention, as Friedman writes21:77:

To safeguard White supremacy and keep the Black man in his place.

It was the duty of every one of the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders to spread the radical racism that formed part of the ideology and establish it, no matter how. Malan’s sober parliamentary promise of 1948 was swept from the table soon after with the promulgation of the NP’s draconian Suppression of Communist Act and the Terrorism Act.9,21,26,27,34,38

Radical Afrikaner Nationalism went very deep and was exacerbated by a kind of Christian Afrikaner radicalism. Since the society called itself Christian, the wrongdoings of Afrikaner leaders could be masked by a religious discourse, painting their actions as necessary for the safety of citizens and part of God’s plan. Groups that countered this included the African Christian Churches, the traditional Anglican and Methodist Churches, and Islamic churches, all institutes that opposed the false Christian dogma of Apartheid.9,26,29

It still remains a mystery why Afrikaners would vote the NP into government by a margin of six seats (but with 100 000 votes fewer) in 1948 solely on the Malan-manifesto as a good political policy, driven by a good political leader.9,21 It brings to the fore the thought of a collective psychopathology among many Afrikaner Nationalists. How could normally functioning people have accepted and underwritten the Malan Manifesto and follow a person with such absurd and radical political thinking on race and religion as that of Malan?9 This thought on psychopathology is further strengthened by the fact that Afrikaner Nationalists supported the racism of the leaders after Malan, like Strydom, Verwoerd and Vorster.9,26,27,31,32,40,41

The discussion now turns to the Malan manifesto in more detail in an effort to open a window onto the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders’ mindsets and though patterns, as well as that of their followers.

The DF Malan Manifesto of 1948, as described in the book Geskiedenis van Suid-Afrika43 by the prominent historian, Professor DW Kruger, reads: 32:563:

The Party wanted to ensure the continued existence of the separate identity of each race in South Africa by means of Apartheid. Whites, Bantus, Coloureds and Indians were to be developed separately and parallel. The cultivation of a national consciousness, self-respect and mutual respect for every separate ethnic group was the declared policy of the Party and therefore also the new government [Own translation].

The impudence of the 1948 Malan policy on the politics and lives of Blacks further reads32:563:

With regard to the Bantu it was the declared policy to segregate the main ethnic groups into their own areas where they could develop as independent units. The reserves were to be seen as the national home of the Bantus. The Party further undertook to ensure that urban areas remain White with separate areas for Blacks, who were viewed as migrant labourers without equal social and political rights. The Party also vouched to control migration to urban areas by working with local authorities. Surplus numbers of Blacks would be sent back to their rural homes or to the reserves. With this aim in mind, a set of identification and control measures were put in place. This separation also applied to unions to protect the interests of White workers. The Party would see to it that the Bantu population received Christian and nationalist education, controlled by the state and administered by a separate state department. The Party recommended that the existing Bantu representation in Parliament and the Cape Provincial Council be abolished so that the Bantu population would be represented by seven White members of the Senate. However, these representatives did not have the power to vote on motions of no confidence, declarations of war or the amendment of the political rights of non-Whites. Instead of direct representation, the Bantus had a separate local government in the areas reserved for Blacks (Own translation].

▲ Please note that the author is aware of the fact that the word Bantu is no longer a suitable term. The term does appear in dated documents and is so translated for the sake of historical accuracy. It is also used in this article to reflect on some South Africans’ racial thinking, speaking and writing of sixty years and less ago. It is part of a collection of degrading names which especial Afrikaner political-historians used pro-1900s in their description of Blacks and needs to be reflected to bring racism prominent to the fore-ground. It does not represent the author’s view-point and he distances him totally from it.

Regarding the Coloured people, Kruger reports32:563-564:

The Coloureds occupy a position half-way between White and Black. In their case too the Nationalist government was in favour of a policy of complete separation – socially, residentially, industrially and politically – both between Coloureds and Whites and Coloureds and other non-White races. Marriage between Whites and Coloureds were prohibited. Coloureds were represented in the Senate by a White member appointed by the government. Cape Coloureds were removed from the voter’s roll, but they were represented by three White representatives in the House of Assembly. A Coloured Representative Council was created, but they had no power to vote on motions of no confidence, war declarations or the rights of non-Whites. There was also a Department for Coloured Matters. The Coloureds were represented in the Cape Provincial Council by three White members. They were elected by the Coloured Representative Council. The Coloureds could elect councils in their own areas to function within the framework of bodies with greater authority [Own translation].

On the Indians Kruger reports the intention of the Malan manifesto as follows32:564:

Regarding the Indians, the National Party was of the opinion that they make up a foreign, unassimilable element. The Party would repatriate them as much as possible, even with financial sacrifice. The rest were segregated from Whites and from other races. They had no representation in the legislative bodies of the Union. There was a segregation of residential areas and Indians could not own property in White areas. Trade facilities of Indians outside of Indian residential areas were strictly controlled. Indian dealers in Bantu areas eventually disappeared while trade rights for Bantus were reserved for these areas [Own translation].

For Afrikaners who grew up in the zeitgeist of the above ideology of White supremacy versus Black inferiority and forced separation from the other races who were “endanger their existence,” there was only one saviour of the “Afrikaner nation”: Apartheid and White supremacy. From 1948 onwards the younger generation of Afrikaner Nationalist leaders inside the NP-AB-DRC alliance all adhered to this ideology and it was entrenched as the only way to govern and lead. It became part of their religious belief system that supported their political intentions, beliefs and behaviours. The ideology that underlie Apartheid was forced down on every South African, both Black and White. No one dared to challenge it. It resembled Nazism.9,29,31,32,41 The Malan manifesto as a factor that affected the development of executive political leaders

The Malan manifesto was perhaps the most important influence on executive political leaders of Apartheid South Africa – far more important than the British pursuit of Afrikaners during the Second Anglo Boer War or the Cape authorities’ treatment of early Afrikaners. It formed the basis for the skewed thinking that supported all the Afrikaner political leaders’ actions during Grand Apartheid. This Manifesto made much of every suffering Afrikaners had endured since 1652, but it did not make anything of the Afrikaner’s contribution to historical events. Malan in this way manipulated the Afrikaners.9,26,27,29,32,38

The impact of the manifesto was profound: where the Afrikaners before 1948 showed unity in resisting oppression, the manifesto made clear that Afrikaners will rule and how they will go about it. Although past injustices were not all referenced in the manifesto, the style of the document is founded on these events. The Afrikaners refused to co-exist with others.

Despite the fact that the Afrikaners developed as an indigenous tribe to South Africa and Africa, the executive political leaders and their naïve Afrikaner Nationalist supporters failed to understand and accept the indigenous realities of South Africa and Africa.9,44 Louw writes9:167:

The settlement of the Afrikaner’s ancestors in 1652 at the Cape of Good Hope was geographically located on a massive African racial fault line. It is a giant demographic sinkhole that, when it opened unexpectedly more than 350 years later, hungrily started swallowing into its dark depths the psycho-political unprepared and bewildered Afrikaners of South Africa as one of the last of the two indigenous White tribes of Africa (with the Tuaregs being the other “White African” tribe). But this unpreparedness and bewilderment is the Afrikaners’ own fault. It was caused primarily by their unwillingness to understand, accept and appropriate the indigenous realities of South Africa into their Afrikanerism.

The Malan manifesto confirms this tragic failure. Also it confirmed in 1948 that White supremacy was central to their thinking. The Afrikaners were in power and they explicitly forced down White supremacy “legally”, “democratically” and by brute force.

When looking at Malan’s intentions, it is clear that he intended to capture South African politics and the economy for the Afrikaners. Without the one, the other one is lost. (The NP leaders played a trick on the ANC during the 1994 hand-over of their regime by giving them the political power, but keeping for themselves the economical power, causing the ANC to still struggle today).9,44-46

What made the impact of the manifesto so long-lasting was that it was not the random writings and propaganda of anyone, but a formal document issued by their supreme leader, the chief of the NP: an educated man, a man of God, a man with finesse, a man whose integrity you cannot doubt, a semi-god. He mesmerized the ordinary Afrikaners. The fact that Malan was so self-assured caused ordinary Afrikaners to follow him. This movement of Afrikaners simply annihilated all obstruction, later on by means of terrible atrocities. The people to a certain extent lost all logic in pursuit of a White utopia.

It must be noted that the group that became the Malan regime, the Purified Afrikaners, were well-organized and focused on changing South African politics long before 1948. This made it easier for them to captivate Afrikaners. South Africa’s participation in the Second World War under Smuts on the side of the passionately hated British against the Germans, gave the Malan group the opportunity to “come out of the closet.” They could use anti-British sentiment for their Afrikaner case and launch their radical politics with force. Malan gathered around him an effective team with clear views on their own political, personal and financial interests and that of their followers. They had the ability to match the two to obtain maximum results. They identified clear priorities and a sound strategy. They formulated an excellent plan of indoctrination, of delivering on the needs of the Afrikaner. They had skilled leaders, sound logistic planning and a delivery chain of middle-level leaders to make sure from day one that their political aims reach the Afrikaners on ground level. Malan and his team exemplified Afrikaner values, customs, habits and traditions, and they knew how to achieve the maximum gains. They knew the habits, traditions, customs and culture of the Afrikaners and how to use it. The way in which Malan utilized Afrikaner nationalism was comparable what Hitler did in 1934 in Germany to gain the upper hand. The unstable and infighting pro-British Afrikaner grouping that dominated the politics from 1910, were no match for Malan by 1948. From 1948 onwards the NP delivered on their promises when it comes to the interest of the Afrikaners.4,9,21,22,26,27,31,32,34,38,39,41,47

The manifesto was a well-planned piece of anarchy that excluded the opposition leader JC Smuts and his group of pro-British political thinkers. The ideology of Afrikanerism simply swallowed what was left of the British Empire in South Africa. The manifesto became the blueprint for Afrikaner behaviour for several decades. The effect of terrorism and the liberation fight on the executive political leaders of the ANC The ANC as a liberation movement

The ANC was founded as a South African liberation movement. The goal of the organization was to free Blacks from White domination and discrimination. Although its initial leaders were mostly Xhosas and Zulus, it was driven publically as an intertribal Black South African liberation organization. One of the main aims was to drive Whites physically from South Africa although Mandela later tried hard to deny this truth.26 The goal of overthrowing White dominance meant that any action was permissible, including murder of Whites. From the very beginning the ANC was not merely a political party with a goal of promoting the interest of its members.26,49-53

The actions and rhetoric of its present executive leaders clearly shows that the ANC still underwrites its early liberation intentions, now hidden from the public eye. Its culture of destruction, self-enrichment and self-empowerment by some of its executive political leaders, its failure to create new ventures to generate income for the inhabitants apart from wealth-grabbing from the rich Whites, (economic empowerment, Black economic empowerment and radical economic transformation), and the promotion of the interests, beliefs, opinions and views of the old ANC elite, provides evidence of a failed political party. This contaminating spirit has been transferred to the Black population from the 1950s onwards. From 1994, the party has been riding this wave in their effort to hold political power and to rule on the strength of an ideology and false promises to bring prosperity by grabbing wealth from Whites. A new younger generation of Black executive leaders have taken over these views since 1994. As a liberation organization, the ANC reached their goal in 1994. The organization should have ended there as a political organization and should have disbanded. South Africa needed a new Black political organization based on true democratic principles and not contaminated by the ANC’s liberation ideas.26,49-56

The destructive intent of the early liberation movement is still active inside the soul of the ANC. This is evident from the fact that since 1994 there has not been any real development for the general Black population – poverty, unemployment and unruliness are increasing – while the redistribution of White capital, taxes and wealth became the basis of their rule and the generation of wealth. Leaders like Mandela, Mbeki and Zuma were at the centre of the start of corruption and nepotism, for example with the Arms Deal. It is not so much that they initially profited from dishonesty, but they knowingly allowed unrestricted dishonesty as executive political leaders in charge of the country’s coffers. Zuma’s poor governance over the last few years is an example of a leader exploiting his own people. It is a blueprint of the ANC’s intention to be destructive in their pre-1994 anarchy. Nearly 800 charges of possible corruption against Zuma still have to be heard. This corruption comes from the earlier liberation mindset. Old liberation leaders put their own interests first before that of the ordinary Blacks. At the same time they keep playing the race card of the White danger, and they do so successfully. There is ample evidence of destruction in South Africa under the ANC-regime, something that is contrary to their noble talking.26,50-66

Mandela was opposed to any tribalism, any cultural collective that could lead to the kind of regime he overthrew, yet he kept associating with terrorist leaders, as evidenced by his many journeys as executive political leader of South Africa to countries linked to terrorism. These countries had supported him in the struggle. When the West warned him not to be naïve about these doubtful countries and their leaders, he dismissed them as arrogant to dictate to him who South Africa’s friends should be. When criticized for selling weapons to Syria (where Basher Assad was slaughtering thousands of Arab Muslims), he responded angrily26:562: “We will conclude agreements with any country whether they are popular in the West or not… the enemies of countries in the West are not ours.” Indeed Fidel Castro of Cuba and Muammar Qadaffi (Kaddafi) of Libya visited South Africa after 1994 and when visiting Muammar Qadaffi in Libya, Mandela awarded him the Order of Good Hope of South Africa. His liberation foundation clearly shone through in his public defence of the murderous Qadaffi.26:565 He said: “Not a single African, Coloured or Indian has questioned my going to Libya, but they regard the interests of whites as being the interests of the country, you cannot challenge the United states because the interests of the country are going to be harmed. Not one black man has said so, only the white parties.” Liberation leaders tend to sit on two chairs at the same time. The double standards of most liberators are best reflected by Mandela’s “praise of President Bill Clinton as a friend of South Africa and Africa, promising him loyalty, as he had done to Qaddaffi.26:565 Liberation as a factor that affected the executive political leaders of the ANC

Mthombothi’s50 in-depth analysis of the ANC is helpful for understanding more of the “political heart” of the party and its leaders in 2018. He writes50:17:

Liberation movements have never been known, once in power, to bring about the nirvana they preached about while seeking to overthrow the status quo. It is not difficult to understand why. Their modus operandi, their raison d’être and what they’re good at, is to destroy rather than build. And it’s easier to destroy than to build. Even a fool can do it. No liberation movement in Africa, Latin America or East Asia has been able to run a passable government or greatly improve the quality of life of the people beyond giving them handouts. Instead of growing the cake, they redistribute what is already in existence. They also tend to overstay their tenure in government, either through their use of violence – which is, after all, the means by which they grabbed power or through the support of a significant part of the populace still grateful that they rid them of the hated ancient regime.

Mthobothi’s50 political dissection goes deeper into the psyche of destruction of the ANC’s current executive political leaders. It grew from their previous leaders, who were their examples. Disorder has become entrenched in these leaders50:17:

But the old rulers always leave a mess behind that others have to clean up. Also their departure from power creates a serious rupture in society because their madness and habits are embedded in all social strata. After all, the party is supreme; it is the vanguard of everything. It therefore cannot be uprooted without destabilising or tearing society itself, leaving deep scars.

This is the lens or tradition through which the ANC should be seen.

Du Plessis59 agrees with Mthobothi50 and emphasizes that the liberation culture was permanently fused into the “DNA and the political wiring” of the ANC’s modern executive political leaders through their earlier exposure to and experience of liberation actions and the corrupted ideologies of their previous leaders. In time it contaminated the ANC’s executive leaders so that they could not rule with effectiveness and wisdom from 1994 onwards.

The ANC leadership’s modus operandi, their raison d’être and their pre-occupation is to destroy all opposition and to stay in politics for their own interests. They are deliberately mismanaging the Constitution, the Parliament and other important statutory institutions and they capturing finances. Slowly they etched away the ethics of good executive political leadership. This is implemented by means of Luthuli house, which captured the country in 1994, centring all political power and decision-making in the ANC NEC and its ANC president.61-62,67-69

Comprehensive evidence on the person of Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma, alias uBaba kaDuduzane Zuma, gives insight into the political mismanagement of South Africa since 1994. His behaviour was influenced by the ANC’s earlier development as a liberation movement and its accompanying political and social flaws. Their liberation tactics included murder, doing things to benefit them personally also became part of the party culture.26, 50-76 The impact of past injustices on today’s Black executive political leaders

The liberation foundation of the ANC has its roots in the first Black colonization of South Africa, which had resulted from Blacks moving from North Africa into Southern Africa in the 1600s. First they were simply seeking freedom and a better life, but it soon turned into fighting between incoming tribes and local tribes, like the KhoiSan. The land grabbing and murder of the legal owners of the territories by the incoming forefathers of the present-day ANC, was nothing else than terrorism. After this colonization, many new Black settlements with clear territories and political power were established. Over time their aggression turned to each other, terrorizing each other for territory, cattle and power. This led to the killing of more than one million Blacks between 1810 and 1840 in northern South Africa. The unique characteristics that are associated with the ANC’s executive political leaders are the same as those associated with their forefathers, like the Zulu king Shaka, who was without doubt a freedom fighter, terrorist and liberator. Shaka’s ruthlessness is evident from his habit of the murdering innocent women and other non-combatants as part of his constant wars against other Blacks. Some other shared characteristics are self-enrichment, oppression of subordinates, misuse of power, murder to keep power, lack of conscience, self-promotion, etc.9,27,29

Powell’s77 work on the role of terrorism in South African politics is informative. He writes that the emotionally laden concepts freedom fighter, terrorist, insurgent, revolutionary and guerrillas bring controversy to the discussion around terrorism. There is no consensus on the use of these names to identify the types of culprits. For instance in China and Russia, any action against the state would make the culprit an enemy of the state, treason and thus terrorism, which is more or less how the NP viewed the ANC.77

The official British description on terrorism seems to be the best suited to the South African situation. Powell77:9 reflects: “…serious violence against a person or serious damage to property; designed to influence a government or an international organization or to intimidate the public or a section of the public; with the aim of advancing a political, religious, racial or ideological cause”.

The late Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat, also gave a good description of the ANC’s political leaders’ mindset. It reads77:9: “For whoever stands by a just cause and fights for freedom and liberation of his land from the invaders, the settlers and colonists, cannot possibly be called terrorist.”

From the British point of view Shaka was a terrorist, as were the tribes who came from the North of Africa to South Africa. Note again the characteristics of true terrorism: 1) serious violence against a person; 2) serious damage to property designed to influence a government or an international organization; or 3) to intimidate the public; 4) to intimidate a section of the public; 5) with the aim of advancing a political, racial or ideological cause. This could clearly include Shaka’s actions towards the then indigenous people, the KhoiSan.77

The behaviours of early Black tribes became part of a culture. The same plundering and murder were used against the Voortrekkers in the 1830s. The Blacks’ exposure to discrimination, domination and suppression awakened and strengthened their earlier established and internalized belief system that terrorism and freedom fighting are the solutions to their problems. In the circumstances of Apartheid, the Black liberator’s tendency towards terrorism was reawakened.9,19,22-27,29,77

Many of the behaviours of the current Black executive political leaders of South Africa are part of a culture passed on from their forefathers. Undoubtedly the oppression they experienced exacerbated this. These negative values, internalized as good customs, traditions and habits, were transferred also as good customs, traditions and habits in the mindsets of the later generations of executive political leaders. In modern South Africa leaders from this culture captured the instable political setup after 1994 to benefit them.50-54,60-76

Just like White discrimination and aggression influenced the Blacks’ mindset negatively, the Blacks’ political aggression and attacks on Whites negatively influenced the Whites’ view of Blacks. South Africa’s racial conflict comes from two sides. It would not be easy to change this. This situation is aggravated if a country’s political setup is in general unstable, as South Africa has been from the middle 1600s to today.24-27,29 Afrikaners and their freedom fighting and terrorism before 1948

The finger is often pointed to the ANC when it comes to terrorism, but the same could be said of Afrikaner Nationalists. They also manipulated the Afrikaner people solely for their own interest by positioning themselves as saviours of Whites and Christianity, the guards against communism, the solution to the “Black danger.” While the ANC wanted to gather heterogeneous Black groups into a large group, the Afrikaner executive political leaders followed the approach of a Whites-only policy by gathering together a small homogeneous group, the Afrikaners, through masterly manipulation of the politics of South Africa. From 1948 the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders were elevated to Afrikaner heroes, good leaders and Afrikaner gods. The South African media was seized by the Afrikaners’ executive leaders to promote themselves and to distribute disinformation on Blacks as the enemies of the Afrikaners. A direct outcome of this was the suppression of non-Whites. However, this behaviour did not start with the Malan manifesto in 1948, it came from the distant past, as do the flaws of the Blacks.9,21,22,26,27,29,38,41,44,43

Given the political history of the Afrikaners, their NP-AB-DRC alliance could also be called a true liberation movement, also radical and often very extreme. Their modus operandi was based on the same liberation principles as that of the ANC, however much the Afrikaners would want to reject this truth. In their case the immediate enemies were the English because of their oppression of the proto-Afrikaners over centuries in the Cape Colony and later in the Boer republics. The growing “Black danger” later became the primary evil to fight. As with most liberation movements (typically with a lifespan of more or less 24 years), the NP-AB-DRC alliance failed disastrously in the end, chiefly because of the NP’s total collapse as a political party of integrity to serve all the South Africans. This leaves South Africa in an enormous political, social, economical and psychological mess, not only for the Whites, but also the Blacks, who were totally unprepared to take over the government in 1994.9,21,22,24,25,37,38,43,54,76

The Afrikaner Nationalists were indeed an active and destructive liberation movement long before the ANC through their Grand Apartheid and their Afrikanerism (1948-1994). Both groups had the same tendency to destroy the opposition.

When comparing the Afrikaners’ political actions with the ANC, the similarities are clear, namely77:

  •     violence against a person;
  •     serious damage to property;
  •     designed to influence a government or an international organization or to     intimidate the public or a section of the public;
  •     with the aim of advancing a political, religious, racial or ideological cause.

This brings us back to Boon’s27 description of the characteristics of a political mobster27:75:

Selfishness; delinquent inclinations all-over; strategies total stripped of all democratic principles, traditions, thinking, planning and doings; absolute intolerant; anti- order; minorities are quickly eradicated; coercion actions characterized by destruction, threat, killings and brutalities; aim the creation of a delinquent mob-reign; aim the exclusive of executive political mob-leaders to reign the country.

Just like the history of Blacks in South Africa became part of ANC culture, the year 1948 laid the same patterns of corruption, mismanagement and racism into the mindsets of the Afrikaner executive political leaders, as the Malan manifesto confirms. The same kind of psychopathology became embedded in the mindsets of many of the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders. This outcome is clear from the political reign of Malan, Verwoerd and Vorster. These Afrikaner-leaders quickly became the untouchable political masters of South Africa through their mobilization of White empowerment and White supremacy. The cold-blooded policy of Apartheid was in line with Powell’s77 British guideline on terrorism and Boon’s27 mobster association with terrorism. There is overwhelming evidence of the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders’ political wrongdoings and they cannot escape the truth and the moral judgement that goes with it. What is more, there is no difference between the wrongdoings of the NP and that of the ANC’s leaders.21,21,25,37,38,43,76

The Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders’ radical behaviour has a much deeper aetiology. It is necessary that we look to the political inclinations of the so-called border Boers (Grensboere) and travelling Boers (Trekboere) living in the late 1700s to early 1800s at the Cape Colony. These persons, today mostly referred to as proto-Afrikaners, lived in less favourable situations and conditions than the more urban proto-Afrikaners, the Cape Dutch. They were undoubtedly less educated and less exposed to urban culture. They were forced to make a hard living in rural areas, populated by multiple groups of hostile non-Whites. The hard life of a farmer and their daily racial conflicts over land exposed them to bad experiences and bad examples. There was a lack of interest in their general welfare and a lack of aid in their defence from the Cape authorities. Their own efforts to survive include reprisals on Blacks for attacking them and stealing their livestock. This resulted in the normalization of bad behaviours.9,18,22,24,25

Certain deviant behaviour became the norm, behaviours that would not be acceptable to the Cape Dutch in the cultured Cape or by the Cape authorities. These behaviours became entrenched into the mindsets of the farmers. The conflict of the border Boers and travelling Boers with the authorities were undoubtedly often caused by the authorities’ negative and hostile attitudes towards these Boers. Often the hostility resulted from the Boers’ failure to abide by the law.9,18,22,24,25

The fact that the Boers moved northwards confirms that they wanted to do things in their “own way.” Their “own way” was not always within the law and resembled terrorism as described by Powell77 and Boon.27 Their behaviours reappeared during the Great Trek when the Voortrekkers started to occupy land that they saw as “uninhabited and ownerless,” while in reality it was the property of certain Black tribes who used it as hunting grounds and pasture for their cattle. Despite this the land was occupied by the Boers, often by brute force. This first forceful occupation of Black land north of the Cape Colony’s border took the same form as the migration of Black tribes southwards with their first colonization of South Africa.9,18,22,24,25

It is important to look at Powell’s77 description of terrorism again. When considering the actions of the Boers, it resembles Saddam Hussein’s unlawful occupation of Kuwait that caused the world to react. In modern times the behaviour of these early Boers would bring them before the International Criminal Court (ICC) for terrorism and murder.10,77

This initial aggression of the Boers went further with the large-scale occupation of Black territory by driving away and killing the Black owners. It was exactly the same terrorism that Shaka employed when taking over the land of other tribes and murdering them to get control over the area. When considering the official British definition77 of terrorism, the behaviour of the Boers seems to fit very well. This early “terrorist” occupation directly led to the founding of the two Boer republics, both of which supported racial discrimination, showing how much it had been internalized. 9,19-23,26,,36,79

In an effort to understand the Boers’ dehumanizing views of Blacks, developed and established either during their stay in the Colony or in the Boer republics, it is informative to read what the Chief Justice of the US Supreme court, the Honourable Judge Roger Brooke Taney declared in 1856, using the rule of law to advance the process of dehumanization4:355-356:

…that the black man ‘had no rights which the White man was bound to respect…the Negro might justly and lawfully be…treated as an ordinary article of merchandise and traffic.

These words were expressed around the same time that the Boer republics were established.9,19-23,26,,36,79

The Boer terrorism and their dehumanization of Blacks were also intended to keep the economic system exclusively for themselves. Self-enrichment and self-empowerment were motives in their political policies. Chomsky says80:28:

Concentration of wealth yields concentration of political power. And concentration of political power gives rise to legislation that increases and accelerates the cycle.

The Boers could enrich themselves by dehumanizing Blacks. Martinez’s4 description of the unbreakable and intertwined determinants in general wrongdoing worldwide clarifies the Boers’ behaviour (and the Afrikaner Nationalists later) against Blacks. These unbreakable and intertwined determinants seem to still be cemented into some Afrikaners’ mindsets in 2018 as reflected by their unreasonable resistance to radical economic transformation (RET) and the surrender of rich white capital (RWC) by the Black regime. Not even the post-1994 dispensation could break down the unbreakable intertwined politics and economics of the Afrikaners.9,58,60,74

Martinez reports4:355-356:

Dehumanisation has always been fostered to concentrate power and justify violence. How can a country grow rich on slave labour if its population regards slaves as fully human? How can military leaders destroy native populations and established new territories if those natives have equal rights? How can rich nations justify their hugely disproportionate consumption of the world’s resources without implicitly believing in their own superiority?

Dehumanisation has long been wired into the systems that dominate the world. Capitalism has to foster moral exclusion to justify the extreme inequality it creates. States are fictional entities that methodically constrain empathy through the cultivation of patriotism. If we are to reduce dehumanization in the world, we need to overcome the physical and psychological distance maintained by borders and bank balances.

After the fall of the two Boer republics, the Transvaal and the Free State, Boers again obtained the political upper hand with the formation of the Union of South Africa. They were still driven by their rigid racism (which includes dehumanization and economic capture). This negative energy was further canalized into the racial policy of the Union and from there into the Grand Apartheid of the Verwoerd Republic, only officially ending in 1994.9,18,22,24,25,58,60,74

It is a clear example of how flawed thinking became part of the very fabric of a people. The main tool the leaders of the border Boers and travelling Boers used to obtain new territories, to enrich themselves and to get political power away from the Cape authority at the cost of the Black inhabitants of Transvaal and Free State, was terrorism in an extreme form.

Researchers have thus far refrained from studying the land grabbing of the Boers in Transvaal and the Free State because it is so politically sensitive. The same goes for the earlier actions of Whites in South Africa. The South African situation does not differ much from the early Americans’ terrorism against the Native Americans (Red Indians) in their land grabbing. Martinez writes as follows about the ignored colonial history of the Americans4:151:

When freedoms clash, some must take priority over others. In the economy, the mechanism that determines which freedoms are prioritized is the property rights system. Property rights bestow the freedom to control and profit from what is owned. They determine who has decision-making authority over a given commodity. Ownership is necessarily exclusive: as soon as one person owns something, the rest of the world does not. When the Wild West pioneer claimed to own ‘newly discovered’ land and made it his home, he appropriated resources that had been the preserve of Native Americans for thousand s of years.

Martinez reports further4:153:

The history of colonialism and imperialism poses further challenges to the legitimacy of property rights today. From the fifteenth century onwards, European nations took control of much of North, Central and South America, large swathes of Asia and, by the twentieth century, most of Africa. Indigenous populations were wiped out or pushed off their land, communities were devastated and resources were appropriated for Western profit; and

There is nothing voluntary about this process. Indeed, it’s hard to see the original appropriation and privatisation of commonly owned resources as anything but theft.

Interesting is the fact that the White Americans seem not to have lost their internalized tendency to commit terrorism when there is occasion to profit, as is evident from their occupation of Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria for oil and minerals in precisely the same way they terrorized the Native Americans of the Wild West for profit long ago. The Afrikaners do the same.81

When looking at the political histories of the two main South African groups, their histories are undoubtedly intertwined. South Africa’s Blacks and Whites are twin brothers when it comes to freedom fighting and terrorism. The thing that made this relationship notorious is the fact that the two brothers fought each other instead of fighting together!

The leaders of the ANC and the NP can be thankful that they are living in comfort in South Africa. The International Criminal Court (ICC) decided different for Radovan Karadzic and Charles Taylor. However, they could still be held to account. The warning of the diplomat Mark Malloch-Brown37 is still applicable to the living and transgressing leaders of the ANC and the NP37:197: “Very bad rulers are discovering that they are accountable for their actions. Punishment can come this side of the grave.” All that has saved the ANC and NP’s executive political leaders so far is that they were not all bad.

4.1.3 The effect of environment on a leader’s mindset The impact of the racial divide in South Africa on the executive political leaders Physical and emotional distance

The physical and emotional distance that hostile groups put between them makes ill treatment of such groups easy, causing no anguish for the soul. Hurting and killing the political opposition became normal, justified, even necessary. Nelson Mandela himself declared this kind of behaviour by the ANC against the Afrikaners “justified actions.” This “moral” justification of terrorism by political leaders is sometimes framed in a religious context, for example the Christian terrorists of the Irish Liberation Army in their killing of the British. The Christian members of the security forces of the NP also gave a religious justification for killing ANC members.23-25,54-56

Martinez4 provides insight into how oppressors reduce the status of their opponent until they are less than human. In South Africa this made it easy for Afrikaners to maintain their racism. They had to keep Blacks “far away” as strangers, enemies that can be punished for good reason without moral guilt. The first step is to categorize these strangers into a bipolar classification of good versus bad, and then to start to dehumanized the “bad” human with different degrading descriptions and names.

This confirms that although abnormal psychological tendencies can play a role in phenomena like Apartheid and terrorism, the transgressors are not always psychopaths or psychiatric patients and can be “normal people.” They have all kinds of learned “abnormal behaviour” that come from examples or authorities forcing down behaviour that varies from asocial to antisocial behaviour within a specific social and political community or society. These behaviours are passed from generation to generation and become entrenched, and this is true of both Black and White in South Africa.4,9

On the role of stereotyping and the mechanisms involved in categorization, Martinez writes4: 350-351:

The way we relate to other groups and individuals is heavily influenced by how we categorize them. Our language abounds with labels that define and distinguish between people: believer/non-believer; illegal immigrant/citizen; criminal/victim; terrorist/civilian; patriot/traitor; black/white; man/woman.

The categories in which we place people reflect a hierarchy of human value. The philosopher Peter Singer uses the term ‘moral circle’ to describe how we place some beings in a privileged category – worthy of our full moral concern – and others outside it. Those within the circle of altruism become part of our moral community and, with respect to them, preferential principles of fairness, conduct, respect, resource, allocation and justice apply. The smaller our circle, the more people are excluded from it. Those who don’t make the cut are judged unworthy of the same level of concern, in which case a different ethical code applies.

Immigrants, foreigners, the poor, the working class, women, the unemployed, the disabled, the obese, the young, the old and prisoners are routinely described in derogatory terms that chip away at their status as human beings worthy of our full moral concern. Racism, sexism and classism are all ways of defining the boundaries of our moral circles in order to keep some people firmly out. Moral exclusion can run in both directions, however: the oppressed can dehumanize their oppressors as much as their oppressors can dehumanize them – the crucial difference being the power each group has to turn prejudice into persecution.

Language reinforces psychological distance. From Nazi Germany to apartheid South Africa, labels that reduce people to the status of animals have been a standard way of justifying persecution. People are called ‘beasts’, ‘dogs’, ‘pigs’ or ‘parasites’. Employing the clinical language of hygiene takes the process further so that people become objects of revulsion: ‘filth’, ‘scum’ or ‘trash’ that must be ‘cleansed’ and ‘eradicated’. Dehumanizing

Language, used as a tool to dehumanize our opponents, reflects our masked racism to groups and individuals. Racially coloured language can be very effectively used to establish racism in children, with the primary focus on outsiders who we believe endanger our identity and future as individuals and as a group. In research on the Arab-Jew problem in Israel, children were asked about the meaning of the word “Arab.” Jewish children aged twenty-four to thirty months reacted with descriptions such as “violent and aggressive people.” Jewish children aged five to six showed a further depreciation of the “Arab” as a social class in the Israeli society and a higher resistance to social contact with them. The research also indicated that some children classed “Arabs” as “killers” and “murderers.” The research shows that the main creators of these negative classifications in the children’s mindsets were the Israeli Jewish parents themselves, who argue that this was implemented to safeguard their children against “Arabs,” although there was no evidence of any direct danger to the children.4

Worldwide certain groups are labelled as bad by other groups. The unlucky groups are usually labelled as “not human.” In today’s world the dehumanization is often more masked than was the case during the Second World War for instance. Martinez4 shows in his analysis of newspapers in the USA how implicitly derogatory racist terms are still used to indicate and evoke racism towards, although indirectly.4 By portraying the “enemy” as not fully human, the process of enslaving and killing them becomes easy. The Second World War offers a good example of the brain-washing of the masses. The enemy was indicated for instance with names like “rats”, “vermin”, “bugs”, “animals”, “pigs”, “apes”, etc. Germans were dehumanized in Russia after their war attacks with literature that would refer to the killing of Germans as follows4:353: “There is nothing more amusing for us than a heap of German corpses”.

Martinez4 comes to the following conclusion on the phenomenon of racial discrimination where dehumanizing became prominent. He writes4: 353-354:

There is a strong temptation to dehumanize those who dehumanize others, but the uncomfortable truth, as history teaches us, is that treating others inhumanely is very much in the scope of our nature. The evidence suggests that what separates us from those whose actions we deplore is not innate moral superiority but circumstances – and not just circumstances that shape our character but the circumstances that determine our options.

The same psychological mechanisms of dehumanization are at work whenever we encounter systematic killing, oppression or torture. In Rwandan genocide of 1994, hundreds of thousands of Tutsis were slaughtered by the Hutu majority. The underlying prejudices were consciously fostered by European colonialists, particularly the Belgians, as part of a ‘divide and rule’ strategy. Insidious theories of racial superiority were established and reinforced institutionally by political, economic and educational means. The Tutsi minority were granted privileges and invited to help rule the Hutu majority, fomenting the anger and resentment that eventually exploded into the violence of the 1990s. Examples abound. Dutch colonialism created the conditions for South African apartheid by systematically denying black South Africans fundamental rights and condemning them to humiliating and degrading conditions.

Many Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders engaged in this kind of categorizing and dehumanizing of certain ethnicities or races, especially from 1948 to 1994 (and even today) with the prominent use of specific degrading and delegitimizing names. They successfully entrenched these terms into their followers’ mindsets. DF Malan and his followers in 1948 started a well-planned scheme to categorize and dehumanize non-Whites, especially the Blacks. They filled the minds of Afrikaners with their false and contaminated ideology. Like the Israeli Jews, they knew very well that stereotypes could be firmly established in the mindset of children long before they develop the cognitive ability to question or doubt received information. The NP’s tactic was also to distance Afrikaners from Blacks as far as possible and to discourage socialization and miscegenation. The NP used the media and several organizations to indoctrinate Afrikaners with Afrikaner supremacy, including various cultural movements that focused on both the Afrikaner youth and adults. Afrikaner movements like the Voortrekkers, the Rapportryers, the Ruiterwagte, etc., became very prominent. Education became another main vehicle to establish Afrikaner supremacy and to cultivate Afrikaner-Nationalist patriotism.9,21,26,32

Martinez writes as follows about the political use of superiority4:358:

They careful demarcate a specific community to whom preferential principles apply. The careful and persistent cultivation of patriotism is, in effect, a form of state-sanctioned dehumanization aimed at not at eradicating empathy but to channelling it to where it is politically useful.

The style and content of DF Malan’s political approach of creating polar opposites with the Afrikaners as “good” versus the Blacks as “bad,” are reminiscent of Hitler’s efforts in 1934 after he took power in Germany. This indoctrination successfully sped up the implementation of the NP’s ideology of racism.9,21,32

The similarity between the approaches of Malan and Hitler becomes clear when one takes a look at Hitler’s modus operandi, as reported by Martinez.4 He writes4:97:

When Hitler took power in 1934, significant resources were expended on shaping the beliefs and values of the German population. Censorship was extreme, and the messages conveyed by the media – from films to books – were tightly controlled. Hitler, who devoted three chapters of Mein Kampf to the subject of propaganda, was acutely aware of the importance of shaping belief and opinion as a means of control. When the Nazis took power, the German education system was comprehensively revamped so that subjects were approached from the state’s ideological framework. History lessons focused on German military achievements, biology classes taught Aryan superiority and, across the board, Jews were demonized and blamed for the economic hardships Germany had experienced. Outside school, millions of children were signed up to the Hitler Youth by parents keen to appear supportive of the regime. By 1939 the organization had eight million members. Restructuring of education system

As in Nazi Germany, evidence confirms that all the new incoming “undemocratic” countries of the 20th century, like Bolshevik Russia, Fascist Italy and Communist China, had one thing in common. They sped up political and social change by restructuring the education system to incorporate the ideologies of the new regimes into the collection of academic school subjects, the teachers’ thinking and youth organizations active inside and outside schools.4

The intention with the establishment of racism in the Afrikaner mindset was to make the Afrikaners suitable for the “new” post-1948 Afrikaner political system as designed by the Afrikaner Nationalist leaders. The racism and the growing dehumanizing of Blacks were not new. It was similar to the politics of the Great Trek and the Boer republics. This Afrikanerism with racism an essential element became the central idiom from 1948 and it determined the Afrikaners’ political thinking, planning and behaviour. In time it overwhelmed all rationality.4,9,21,22,32,60,79

This racism did not magically disappear in 1994. In present-day South Africa we, Black and White, are still racists in one or the other way, we still use racial terms to describe other South Africans, as our official documents confirm. When we are angry about political outcomes, we still call each other degrading names, although mostly in the secrecy of our homes. The complexity of the South African racial milieu is well described by Ela Gandhi, a granddaughter of Mahatma Gandhi82:21:

I believe that we can only understand what is happening in South Africa if we acknowledge our racist history. Racist education and unbridled racial discrimination were entrenched in the various apartheid laws. Today, although most racist laws are rooted out, racist attitudes, prejudices, misconceptions and judgments remain within us.

Regarding these rigid racist attitudes, prejudices, misconceptions and judgements that Gandhi feels have remained within us and that are still strengthening the categorizing and dehumanizing of South African, she further writes82:21:

Academics define racialism as the recognition of cultural differences between race groups, as opposed to racism, which arises when members of one race group believe they are superior to the others and manifest this belief in a way that hurts others.

Perpetrators of racist pranks, utterances, assaults and insults often believe they have done no wrong, because the idea of their superiority is so deeply entrenched in their minds that others are not considered as humans with feelings and importance. With this kind of mindset, they automatically give vent to racist vitriol when irked by some incident. This kind of mindset also leads them to spur each other on to engage in violent group forms of racist behaviour.

The above also goes for the ANC’s executive political leaders. They also experienced a social, emotional and physical distancing from Afrikaners for centuries, leading to their own political wrongdoings, including terrorist acts against Afrikaners in pre-1994 South Africa.

Nils Christie4 also writes on the effects of distancing and dehumanizing. He studied guards who had worked in German and Norwegian concentration and extermination camps in the wake of the Second World War. He did controlled psychological experiments, upon which he concludes4:350: “Distance makes killing and torture possible…Distance makes it possible to lose sight of the victim as an ordinary human being.”

Apartheid’s distancing and dehumanizing made Afrikaners lose sight of Blacks as human beings, making it easier for them to commit atrocities against Blacks. Similarly, as with the Afrikaners, Blacks had a distancing and contaminated relationship with Afrikaners from early times. This is still present in the attitudes of Black executive political leaders.9,83

Both Black and White in South Africa should put these learned attitudes aside. They should take to heart the wisdom of the Italian proverb: After the game, the King and the pawn go into the same box. Exposure to ethnic and racial differentiation, domination and discrimination as factors that influence the behaviour of executive political leaders

A factor that adds to the effects of distancing and categorization is exposure to short and long-term traumatic events. Collective trauma can lie far in the past and still influence a group. Negative perceptions are transferred from generation to generation and they become guidelines on how to behave towards previously hostile and aggressive persons and groups or situations. The behaviour of the Englishman and the Frenchman illustrated earlier is a good example. The use of a language of fear by Jewish parents to instil negative perceptions of Arabs as persons in time become guidelines for how to treat Arabs.1,2,4,9

The DF Malan manifesto is an excellent example of how a group’s earlier political history and trauma could be shaped into a propagandistic document, mesmerizing people (victims) who feel that they have been short-changed in the past by certain persons or groups. Most of these discourses identify a culprit. In South Africa there is not a single tribe or groups that had not been subjected to suppression, atrocities and genocide at some time. Each group may have experienced it differently or vary in the degree of powerlessness they feel. The trauma experienced by a tribe or group has the ability to deform their mindsets. It also makes them susceptible to indoctrination by leaders. We see this with Stalin in Russia, Hitler in Germany, Mussolini in Italy and Malan in South Africa.4,9,11,12,27,32

The wrongdoers of these tribes become monsters due to their own evil-laden internalized past. This is what Martinez4 refers to as our lottery of birth. It seems impossible to escape this dynamic.

Research confirms that many of the more radical leaders experienced traumatic events personally. Many racist political leaders seem to have grown up as children in racist homes. They had racist role models. Often what they learned amounts to psychopathology. The racial discrimination of many Afrikaners also leads back to the early history of the group as a whole.9,20-25-27,32-35,37,42

Hatred for the British due to their cold-blooded genocide of the Boer families during the Anglo-Boer War also influenced the racism of the early Afrikaners. In addition they were in competition with Blacks politically, socially, psychologically and economically. After their political emancipation in 1910, the enemy that remained was the “Black danger,” the last of the external dangers. Over the years, Afrikaners came to see the Blacks as the primary reason for trauma. It stands out as a determinant of the political and racial behaviour of Afrikaners. The stopcock of racial discrimination was opened on the Blacks in 1948.19-25,29,31,32,34,35,44,78,79

Louw9 shows how in South Africa the experiences of the different groups led to perceptions, and perceptions led to new behaviours to survive. Negative experiences caused negative reactions, and so the cycle continues. The racially discriminative examples set by government authorities and other supportive institutions and groups set the stage for discrimination as an approved and acceptable and even prescribed lifestyle. Decades of conditioning had people believe that the groups at the receiving end are getting what they deserve.4,9,21,22,33

Louw9 notes that negative experiences can stimulate or strengthen established racial attitudes and behaviours, an action-reaction syndrome. Belief systems that had been internalized over generations and which had become firmly established in individuals, groups and tribes, take a momentum of their own and remain part of a collective psyche long after the initial stimuli have disappeared. This applies to both negative and positive experiences. Such learned prejudices, shaped and maintained by conditioning, overrides even the soundest cognitive thinking and reasoning.9,30,49

Traditions, habits, custom, values and beliefs that have been established over generations become part of people’s characters and personalities. These elements are unchangeable as long as a group survives as a unit. Behavioural psychology shows that cultural, religious and political thinking gains a momentum of its own and remains present long after the initial cause has disappeared.9,84

When considering the Afrikaners’ racism and Apartheid, we should focus on the impact their executive leadership had from 1910, but especially from 1948. Louw reflects9:223:

The doctrine of racism and its constant impression on nationalist Afrikaners by the NP-AB-DRC alliance’s leadership led to a successful Afrikaner ethnic and racial despotism within half a century in South Africa. The NP-AB-DRC used methods such as ostracizing and punishing dissident Afrikaners for political deviation and anti-Afrikaner behaviour and compensating people for approved of pro-Afrikaner behaviours. This situation was never challenged or questioned by grassroots nationalist Afrikaners and was inculcated in the new generations of nationalist Afrikaners. Greed played a part in the start and continuation of conformity to racism.

Most Afrikaners grew up in this undemocratic political context. They obliged themselves to a lifestyle manipulated by the arrogant leaders of the NP-AB-DRC alliance. By means of parliamentary mandating, they indirectly took away the ordinary Afrikaners’ basic right to decide for themselves on their behaviour, thinking and planning. These are common rights in a democracy. Ordinary Afrikaners were trapped within a doctrine where discrimination against non-Whites and negative attitudes against other ethnic groups were regarded as appropriate, correct and morally justified. They adhered to the opinions, advice, viewpoints and integrity of the leaders of the NP-AB-DRC alliance unquestioningly, even if their own logical thinking contradicted it.

From 1994 onwards the NP-AB-DRC alliance started to collapse, taking with it the protection of the Afrikaner culture that they had mould since 1948 into a supremacist nationalist Afrikaner unity drenched in racism. Afrikaner supremacy, exclusive group interest and unselfish service to the Afrikaner nation formed the glue of nationalist Afrikaners up to that point. There used to be financial benefit in being a loyal Afrikaner. This changed in 1994, leaving the ordinary Afrikaner out in the cold politically speaking, saddled with Apartheid’s baggage. The fact is, membership of the Afrikaner “volk” was beneficial, but also made them responsible for what the larger group did.9,22,31,44

In 2018 Afrikaners have to function as citizens in a context where they are viewed as culprits and transgressors of human rights. In retrospect we can spot the emotional rhetoric that the Afrikaner people failed to see.9,22,31,44

The ordinary Afrikaner has to ask himself why he practised Apartheid without first asking himself whether it was right or wrong and what the ultimate price would be. The use of selective amnesia and flattering myths to justify the behaviour of executive political leaders

Political leaders tend to cover up past mistakes with lies and misinformation. In this way they preserve their image so that followers would keep to belief in them. They often similarly glorify the history of the collective that they represent.9,19,20,23,32-35,41,78,79

Hitler used this tactic of selective propaganda to make the German history seem glorious. From 1934 Hitler launched a comprehensive onslaught on the German people to force down a stream of false and misleading information to strengthen the belief system he aimed to establish. The immediate aim of the leader was to motivate and to steer his followers within the ambits of his prescribed ideology to master certain tasks that would benefit them as a group and the masked intentions and interests of the leader. He first started portraying the Germans as superior. Secondly he identified the hardships of the Germans, pointing out why they suffered in the past. He identified events in Germany’s past that had to be avenged and rectified, like the war fines paid and land losses suffered by Germany after the First World War. Then he identified scapegoats, groups identified as responsible for the misfortune of the Germans. The primary focus was on Germany’s bad economy and the financial success of non-German minorities. In Germany’s case the Jews were targeted. In an effort to enrich the ordinary German, he implemented radical economic transformation (RET) and radical social transformation (RST). In this first place RST was implemented with the categorizing and dehumanizing of German Jews, followed by their capturing and termination, where after his RET followed easily.4,9-12,47

Hitler’s success has to do with the fact that he could draw the attention away from German flaws. He covered up Germany’s failed past and deliberately taught followers to forget the failures that the Germans brought over themselves.4,9-12,47

In South Africa the Malan-regime did the same from 1948. He moved the focus away from the shortcomings of the Afrikaner. He glorified the Afrikaners.9,21,32,41

The Afrikaners’ history was portrayed as honourable. They were unique as Europeans in Africa, this fact warranting racism. He fought off anything that could endanger the Afrikaner’s culture, rights and most importantly, their economic advantage. Central to this was the portrayal of the Afrikaner as a godsend to Africa, a group with a heroic history.9,21,32,41

Martinez4 pinpoints the power of ideology when he writes on the similarly manipulated British history and the British destiny in the Greater World. He points out that “flattering myths about the past buy legitimacy in the present.”4:263

To give truth to his statement, Martinez continues4:263:

A YouGov poll in 2016 showed that more Britons were proud of their nation’s colonial legacy than those who regretted it. This is unsurprising considering that the crimes of the British Empire are unknown to most people. There certainly has been no shortage of historians or political leaders ready to declare that the nation should be proud of its imperial past. That the empire is responsible for the deaths of ten millions of people, that it reaped huge profits from the slave trade, locked up hundreds of thousands in concentration camps (including many children), massacred civilians and is guilty of systematic brutality, torture and theft is not part of the nation’s consciousness.

Then of course was there was Britain’s slave trade or slave economy that created capital that is still supporting Britain today and keeps some of its prominent families in luxury.4 The British have become affected by a collective amnesia in this regard.4

The idea of the Afrikaners as a god-sent tribe in South Africa was only introduced after 1902. However, the Afrikaners’ racial purity as Europeans was contaminated from day one in 1652. The culture reflected so many times in Afrikaner historical books, is in reality the lifestyles of the border and travelling farmers of the Cape Colony, persons who were mostly living outside the established legal system of the Cape and its more cultured Cape Dutch people. The racism of these border and travelling farmers was founded on the religious idea of the Biblical struggle of the Jews with the pagan Middle Eastern tribes. This developed into an identity as a chosen people with Christian White supremacy. This ideology was carried to the two Boer republics and practiced during and after the Great Trek. Any challenge to Afrikaner supremacy in these earlier northern republics was seen as a challenge to their Christianity and Biblical right to rule over non-Whites, no matter where and when. Miscegenation was seen as sinful, even though mixed blood is an intricate part of the origins of the Afrikaners. Well-planned and thought out lies successfully isolated the Afrikaners from their own and real (dark) past.9,19,20-25,29,31,32,34,35,44,78,79

The education that Afrikaners received after the founding of the Union justified racism as a defence against the Black barbarians. The fights for survival by their forefathers against hostile Blacks in the Cape, Natal, Transvaal and Free State were portrayed as heroic. Their cruelty to Blacks was sold as righteous, while it was in reality a cheap solution to the labour problem. The unlawful occupation of the land of Black tribes in Natal, Transvaal and the Free State was reflected simply as the occupation of ownerless land. Battles that were not really won against the Blacks were reflected as heroic battles of the Boers. Early Boer leaders were presented as persons of high integrity and as visionaries, heroes in the many battles fought (and many times lost). This was all false propaganda that contradicts the facts. The cruelties of the British concentration camps against Boer women and children and the British bad treatment of the Boers after the Anglo-Boer War was used to show the suffering of Afrikaners (especially by the Northern Afrikaners, who later became the fathers of Apartheid) and the primary reason for the justification of racism and ethnic hate by the Afrikaners.9,19,20-25,29,31,32,34,35,44,78,79

Only the human, social, economic and political rights of the Whites were emphasized, while the non-Whites were reduced to non-humans. The Blacks were moved out of sight to distance them from the Whites, to conceal their immense poverty and the deliberately neglect of their development by the White rulers. Criticism on Afrikaner atrocities were either ignored or rejected as untruths (and suppressed by the security services). The Afrikaner leaders portrayed the history of the Afrikaner as righteous, good, glorious, while in fact certain actions of the Afrikaners should be despised.9,19,20-25,29,31,32,34,35,44,78,79

The Afrikaner was not a victim of Apartheid. The racism, self-enrichment, the abuse of non-Whites and opportunism were not the end result of a fate over which they had no control. Apartheid was a cold-blooded decision. Central to this is the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leadership with their false ideology and manipulation of the Afrikaner people. Some of these leaders show psycho-pathology: they were dangerous as persons and as leaders; not only to the non-Whites, but also to dissident Afrikaners and even the Afrikaners as a group.9,19,20-25,29,31,32,34,35,44,78,79 Martinez’s lottery of birth Role of the past

Martinez4 looks at people’s behaviour from another angle. He postulates that it is very difficult for individuals, groups and political leaders who were born into a rigid racial society to rid their thinking from the past. In South Africa this is valid for Afrikaners, Blacks, and their leaders. An individual’s place of birth, their parents and their immediate community all become part of the mould that shapes their personalities and actions.

Why could Afrikaners never break free from racism? They themselves experienced discrimination and marginalization at the hands of the Dutch and the English, yet they could not rid their own thinking from racist views. Did they plan the racial discrimination based on the experiences of their ancestors, or did the experiences of their ancestors condition them?

Martinez4 engages with these questions by arguing that people are not fully free to choose their environment, their religion, their parents, or their thought frameworks. He proposes that the knowledge people possess, the beliefs they hold, the tastes they develop, the traditions they adopt, the opportunities they enjoy, and the very lives they lead, depend entirely on their biological inheritance, their life experiences and the environment from which they come and to which they are exposed. He called this “birth right” the “lottery of birth.” For Martinez4 the societies in which people grow up absorb them, take their potential and shape it into their moulds (behavioural psychologists would say their “latent potential” is indoctrinated). He acknowledges that people could develop a loyalty to another group, nation, ideology or religion, they could learn other languages, practice other social customs or partake in acts different from what they were born into. Behaviour is therefore not absolute and unchangeable, but is determined to a certain extent by people’s unique initial environment (his biological inheritance also plays a role).

Martinez4 argues that people may not have defended the traditions they do or committed the transgressions they have if they were born into a different environment. However, it is possible for a person to change his thinking and behaviour after having lived a long life as part of a certain culture and society. Some people can completely transform, but it is difficult for an entire group to do so. The lower strata of the societal hierarchy of one community can seldom in totality move up the hierarchy in a single life-time. Class structures and leadership control limits the mobility of groups. If a group succeeds in creating such mobility for themselves, the lottery of birth would bring other outcomes for their descendants. Societal hierarchy

Martinez’s4 societal hierarchy has a massive group of disempowered people at the lower level who are constantly steered and abused by a small group of immensely powerful persons at the top. The small group of lucky economical and political leaders maintains this hierarchy with selfish and opportunistic political, social, personal and economical behaviours. They engage in abuse, categorization of groups lower down the hierarchy, criminality, degradation, dehumanization, dishonesty, discrimination, inequality, injustice, slavery, suppression, theft, and they keep the masses uneducated and untrained. The haves abuse the have nots by using the mandate that the masses give to the few to rule. Martinez4 provides evidence to sketch the immense imbalances between the “haves” and “have nots.” He gives us a condensed summary of this dire situation, but also an indirect warning of the outcome that this could lead to. He writes4:59,65,73:

In terms of economic remuneration, talent and hard work mean little if they are not granted the right conditions in which to flourish. Human potential is squandered on an enormous scale because of the extreme inequalities of opportunities that exist in the world. Countless people have perished from preventable disease, died in senseless wars and starved in avoidable poverty. Billions have been denied the freedom necessary to be realize even a fraction of their promise. Many potential Shakespeares and Einsteins, Maya Angelous and Emmy Noethers must have lived and died without ever knowing the wonders of which they were capable (p. 65);

Disparities in wealth are so pervasive that it takes some effort of imagination to see things afresh, to understand that there is nothing inevitable about poverty or gross inequality in the modern world. There is no immutable law of nature preventing us from sharing things more equitably, so that everyone is fed, clothed, nourished, sheltered and educated. Human choices maintain the current distribution of wealth and human choices can change it (p. 59); and

The degree of inequality we see in the world is the outcome of policy. It cannot be rectified by trying to make markets look more like the highly abstract models so beloved of neoclassical economists. The growing concentrations of undeserved wealth are not a sign of market failure but a natural outcome of the power dynamics within a market system. In the real world, deregulated markets favour those who own capital. The state has the power to reinforce this advantage or curtail it. There is no value-neutral way to balance the power of workers and corporations: any attempt requires value judgements to be made and most of the time these simply reflect the power balance of competing forces within the society (p. 73). Misuse of capitalism

The above abuse of political power and self-enrichment by political leaders, the rich and the capitalists to exploit the poor and the poor’s inability and powerlessness to break out of their modern-day slavery, is further discussed by Martinez4:83:

Humanity has the resources to eradicate starvation, illiteracy, extreme poverty and some of the world’s deadliest diseases; it has the means to deepen and expand human freedom for every person on the planet. So why does deprivation and inequality persist? Why do Earth’s bountiful resources and humanity’s endless creativity serve so few at the expense of so many? Not because the rewards in our society go to those who deserve them, not because it’s necessary to incentive people, and not because it benefits the whole of society. The great imbalance of wealth simply reflects the great imbalance of power.

The father of modern economics, Adam Smith4, postulated in 1776 that the security of property issued by civil government was in reality only instituted for the defence of the rich against the poor, or for those who have some property against those lacking anything at all. This is still applicable today, since little has changed in 250 years.

Martinez comments as follows on the limited chances a lower-level person has to break through the barriers of the lottery of birth that keeps most of the poor people stuck at the lower level4:20:

Some people defy every expectation, achieving remarkable things in the face of adversity. It is tempting to view such lives as evidence that we can, after all, be masters of our own destiny, but to do so would be a mistake. Forces beyond our control determine control the resources – psychological, physical and material – at our disposal to carve out a new path, and these resources, along with countless other twists of fate, ultimately determine how successful we will be in our attempt. For every unlikely success story there are countless people of equal potential who died in poverty and obscurity due to the crushing force of circumstances. Just because the odd person wins the lottery does not mean the game isn’t rigged for everyone else to lose.

Martinez4 is correct when he argues that the few who made were just lucky – after all, who can move up if they have the brains, but lack the finance to study or make their ideas work? He makes it clear why the lottery of birth exists4:64:

For instance, in the US, only 9 per cent of students in elite universities come from the poorer half of the population. Another study released in 2015 by the UK Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission exploded the myth of a meritocratic society. According to its findings, children from wealthier families with less academic intelligence than their poorer counterparts were nevertheless 35 per cent more likely to end up becoming high earners. Wealthy parents employ a range of strategies to ensure their children end up in ‘top jobs’ but, whether it’s by tapping into powerful personal networks or subsidizing unpaid internships, the result is the same: an absence of downwards mobility. And, because high-earning jobs are in limited supply, gifted students from less advantaged backgrounds face an uphill struggle to turn their potential into market rewards.

Coggan86 reports further in this regard that at universities such as Harvard and Stanford, 74% of students come from families with earnings in the top quartile. Only three per cent come from the bottom quartile. Furthermore, only 29% of poor students with high scores for mathematics in national tests go on to get a degree, compared to the 75% of rich students who do so. Goggan writes as follows about the rigidity of the American social hierarchy86: 200:

In addition, with more women now attending university, marriages are increasingly taking place within the same social group, leading to less mobility within the population. In the top 5% of the population by income, 75% of married couples each have university degrees; in general population, the proportion is just 25%.

When it comes to the riches of people of the upper level of the hierarchy versus the poverty of the people in the lower level, Martinez reflects a more gloom picture. He reports4:62:

To those who have, more is given’. There was a ‘significant correlation between the wealth of families five generations apart’. In other words, ‘What your great-great-grandfather was doing is still predictive of what you are doing now’. Today, the descendants of the nineteenth century’s upper classes are not only richer, but more likely to live longer, attend Oxford or Cambridge and end up a doctor or lawyer. And there is no sign of any let-up in the power of inheritance to shape the world. The wealth transferred via inheritance from one generation to the next is set to break all records. A report by the Boston College Center on Wealth and Philanthropy predicts that the US is set for the largest inter-generational transfer in history: $59 trillion passed down between 2007 and 2061.

The 27 richest Western countries reflect a clear internal discrepancy in income between their rich and poor citizens, reaffirming the block that the lower social classes experience in moving up in the hierarchy. Coggan writes86: 201:

In the 27 countries of the OECD (the rich economies’ club) the real average income of the top 10% of the population rose by 1.9% annually between the mid-1980s and the late 200s, whereas that of the bottom 10% rose by only 1.3%.

Martinez4 points out that ownership of capital (land, real estate, industrial equipment and money) allows the top level of the social hierarchy to become extraordinarily rich without doing anything. Liliane Bettencourt, the heiress of L’Oréal, the world’s largest cosmetics company, increased her fortune from $2 billion to $25 billion between 1990 and 2010 without having to lift a finger, reports Martinez. Inherited wealth in the US for the period 1970 to 1980 accounted for 50 to 60 per cent (it can be as much as 80) of the total wealth. Inherited wealth globally accounted for 60 to 70 per cent of the largest fortunes and some of these inheritances represent enormous transfers of economic power: for instance the well-known Walton family is worth $152 billion. In most European countries the top ten per cent of the population owns more or less sixty per cent of the wealth, while in the US the top ten per cent of the population owns just over 70 per cent of the wealth.4

This discrepancy is also reflected in the disparity in the income of the rich and the poor, even of the less poor and the rich. At the close of each day billions of people are rewarded less than $2 a day, while an American hedge fund manager like David Tepper bags more than $1 million an hour. The consequence is that the eighty-five richest people on earth own as much wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population and the richest one per cent of the world now own more than the remaining ninety-nine percent combined.4

From the above it is clear where the world’s wealth is vested and why the poor remain stuck at the lowest level of the socio-economical hierarchy. Even the political leaders who say they advance the interests of the poor fail to bring these people to a point where they can better themselves. The rich and those political leaders in the top level of the hierarchy are exploiting the poor for cheap labour and for the minerals and agricultural wealth of poor countries. Through the chaos rule of poverty and political and the socio-economical instability of the lower level of the hierarchy, the poor is still ruled as in the days of colonialism and imperialism from London, Washington and Paris. The primary factors driving this human inequality is the self-enrichment and political delinquency of foreign executive political leaders. They are seated far away from the impoverish countries and their dehumanized people. The dehumanizing brought about by social and physical distance is still practiced today. A change to this rich man–poor man system will not be allowed. Rich countries will even go to war against poor countries to preserve the status quo, as has been happening now for years with the West’s exploitation of Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq. The main culprit is here the USA.4,10-12,27

It is extremely difficult for the poor to move up the ladder in countries like Bangladesh and Peru. The fact is that in the US in general (without taking in account the race factor), mobility is also blocked. Coggan86 reports in 2004 that one in ten (1:10) of the richest one per cent of Americans start life in the bottom of 80 per cent of the population. This ratio was 1:7 in the 1970s.

One thing is clear: wealth generates wealth and poverty generates poverty. The system supports the rich. It is in this context that Warren Buffett4 with good confidence could postulate that most of the world’s seven billion people’s births, existences and destinies are pure luck. Buffett, a brilliant economist and billionaire, knows very well the permanent and devastating imbalance between the rich and the poor worldwide. For him the destinies of all people are predetermined by their moment of birth, meaning where they are born, who gives birth to them, along with their gender and intellect. If they are born into an overall poor community, are isolated from opportunities, are discriminated against politically, economically and psychologically, their chances – in spite of talent – is zero to advance to a better life. With this political, economical and psychological blockage comes the psychological trap of being lost and without hope as a result of long periods of suffering.

Mason87 adds an excellent insight87:102:

The means by which it did so are clear and well documented. Unequal trade relationships forced much of Latin America, all of Africa and most of Asia to adopt development models that led to super-profits for Western companies and poverty at home. Counties that tried to reject these models, such as Chile or Guyana, had their governments overthrown by CIA coups or, as with Grenada, by invasion. Many found their economies destroyed by debt and by the ‘structural adjustment programmes’ the IMF dictated in return for debt write-offs. With little domestic industry, their growth models relied on the export of raw materials, and the incomes of the poor stagnated.

Mason87 writes further87:290-291:

What happens to the 1 per cent? They become poorer and therefore happier. Because it’s tough being rich.

Convinced that only the smart succeed, they send their kids to expensive private schools to hone their individuality. But they come out the same: little versions of Milton Friedman and Christine Lagarde.

Beneath it all lies lingering doubt. Their self-belief tells them that capitalism is good because it is dynamic – but its dynamism is only really felt where there are plentiful supplies of cheap labour, repressed democracy – and where inequality is rising. To live in a world so separate, dominated by the myth of uniqueness but in reality so uniform, constantly worried you’re going to loose it all, is – I am not kidding – tough.

Buffett4 recognizes this psychological, social and economical stuckness of the unfortunate masses of poor by comparing himself as a rich person with the poor when he says:

If you stick me down in the middle of Bangladesh or Peru or someplace, you’ll find out how much this talent is going to produce in the wrong kind of soil. I will be struggling thirty years later. I work in a market system that happens to reward what I do very well – disproportionately well”.

As already indicated, the misuse of capitalism and the undisturbed activities of corrupted democratic governments and delinquent political leaders of the Western World are prominent in the efforts to keep development and riches away from the poor. The poor can never be winners in this setup.4,10 (The efforts to keep South African Blacks down followed the same dynamic from 1910 to 1994).9

Warren Buffett4 admits that his society (White US) was and is responsible for most of what he has earned. He compares himself in a fortunate extraordinary position in a supportive and rich society to the average poor in a good-for-nothing position in poverty-stricken, malfunctioning and disorderly society. He deduces two truths from this comparison, namely4:64: “to those who have, more is given; and wealth generates wealth”.

Of course, Buffett4 makes this prediction in a safe predictable environment: the US is a capitalist country, manipulating and corrupting global economics so that even the average American can make himself rich while the countries of Bangladesh and Peru are skeletons left after colonialism dictatorships. Both Bangladesh and Peru have undergone little general development, leaving their populations impoverished. The impoverished, struggling, underdeveloped and undeveloped Bangladesh and Peru are not exceptions in the economical world, they are the general and true face of how the most countries in the world are managed from outside by countries with capital and political power. It is financially near impossible for a Bangladeshi to move out of his community – he lacks opportunities, logistics, finance, training, etc. Migrating to another country is basically impossible. The average Bangladeshi became, in Martinez’s4 words, one of the “countless people of equal potential who died in poverty and obscurity due to the crushing force of circumstances.” Buffett,4 one of few billionaires in the world and free from the “crushing force of circumstances,” could move freely inside and outside the US, using the manifold opportunities, logistics, finance, training, etc., to enrich him further and give quality to his life. Whiteness

The question is, what is it that causes Buffet to have opportunities that a labourer from the lower caste in India does not? Why can Martinez study at good universities and do expensive research and a displaced Syrian water seller could not? The answer is: Buffet and Martinez are both protected by Whiteness. Why are non-Whites all over the world still caught in the unlucky lottery of birth and not the colonial powers like the USA, the UK or France, which had abused and subordinated these non-Whites? Why are the Blacks of the USA on average also worse off than the White Americans? The American Dream and Martin Luther King’s dream have made place for the Black Lives Matter nightmare.4,10,11,15,47,77,80

Read what Martinez4 reports about the White world’s negativity about Blackness and non-Whiteness and the “racial unluckiness” of Blacks to be jailed in greater numbers in the USA. He writes4:46:

The skewed distribution of “racial luck” is particularly disturbing. Although black people make up only 12 per cent of the US population, they account for 40 per cent of its prison population. Across the US today, black people are more than six times as likely to be imprisoned than whites, 31 per cent more likely to be killed by a cop (and more likely to be unarmed when killed). Racial prejudice permeates almost every area of American society, greatly diminishing opportunities available to black people and ethnic minorities;

A white man with a criminal record is still more likely to be considered for a job than a black man without one. Analysis of US government data by the Pew Research Center shows that ‘When it comes to household income and household wealth, the gap between blacks and whites have widened. On measures such as high school completion and life expectancy, they have narrowed. On other measures, including poverty and homeownership rates, the gaps are roughly the same; and

A similar pattern is to be found among ethnic minorities in the UK, with black people five times more likely to end up in prison. The Equality and Human Rights Commission found that, when officers did not need suspicion of involvement in a crime to stop and search (under section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994), black people were thirty-seven times more likely to be targeted. In fact, young black men are more likely to end up in prison than at an elite university. And Inquest, a UK charity that campaign against deaths in police custody, have found that, since 1990, over 4000 people from black communities or ethnic minorities have died while incarcerated or in the custody of police.

The above provides another point of view on the true and whole story behind the lucky/unlucky lottery of birth. We must take note of the racial component built into it. From the above evidence it seems as if non-White/Black is a synonym for poverty/crime/failure/uselessness/badness. The nonchalant attitudes often visible in the opinions on the poverty, discrimination, categorizing and dehumanizing of Blacks, are anchored in a negative characterization of Black human life and status a century or two ago. Just looking at the slave history versus the inheritance of wealth and capital ownership so deeply engrained in British mindsets makes it is easy to understand the conflicting social hierarchy of higher-level people versus lower-level people still in existence in modern society. The majority of non-Whites have been locked in the poverty class ruled from outside by opportunistic and delinquent leaders. Exploitation and economic slavery

Slavery is not in the past. It is still here, it is now the exploitation of the freed but underdeveloped and untrained poor non-Whites, living mostly in Africa, South America and the Far East. Writings on the formal slave trade provide insight into how today’s informal slave trade is run. It still brings immense richness for the capitalists, the wealthy and political leaders.4,27 It is clear that the capital on which the modern world was built, was originally obtained through violence and exploitation of Blacks. It was slavery that rapidly accelerated the accumulation of capital in 18th century Britain and it was the profits of exploited slave labour that helped to develop Britain’s current infrastructure and money market. It is estimated that the contribution of the slaves’ unpaid labour in Britain amounts to ₤4 trillion. More than 20% of wealthy Victorian Britons derived all or part of their fortunes from the slave economy. When slavery was eventually abolished in Britain, more than 46 000 slave owners were compensated for their loss of “their property” or “Black Gold.” They received upwards of ₤17 billion worth in today’s money, while the slaves did not received any compensation.4 Between 1680 and 1700, British vessels transported more than 300 000 slaves from Africa and after the Asiento Treaty of 1713, the British entered into the South American trade slave “economy,” making the slave trade virtually a British monopoly.4,27

Poor workers are still controlled with violence as was done with the slaves. In 2012 thirty-four miners striking for a higher wage was killed by the South African police at the Marikana mine near Rustenburg. It is still widespread practice to control workers with illegal agreements between big enterprises to suppress the wages of hundreds of thousands of their employees.4,65

The theory of a lottery of birth just contains too many falsities. It is not true humans are in general unhappy with the lottery of birth and that they should just be satisfied with what they received upon birth. Of course, there will always people who will be unhappy with their context, but they are by far the minority. Most people are happy and satisfied, even in the most deploring of circumstances. We saw this very well in South Africa with the way in which Blacks adapted to the hardships created by Apartheid. Black South Africans have a tremendous capacity to be self-energizing to reach happiness. Life is not based on a fatalist system where human fate is predetermined4:29 by the gods, the stars in the heavens, or some other external forces. We can choose our destinies and actions with precise aims and intentions. Luck is not everything. The greatest limitation is still the human condition itself, death from old age, epidemics and disasters, outcomes that are equal applicable to the billionaire and the poor.4,9

The fact that people can leave their past behind is clear from the fact that many poorer communities have far better overall health and personal happiness, and show less violence and crime, better morality, better education and a smaller gap between with the richest and the poorest.4

When looking critically at the behaviour of individuals and leaders, it is clear that the modern world is not that much different from the world of five-hundred years or more ago. Politics and economics are still the age-old controls and abusive political leaders driven by self-enrichment and power are still central4:106:

In 1500, however, power and privilege was concentrated in the hands of a tiny minority of aristocrats and senior clergy who monopolized access to education, politics and wealth. Notions of individual liberty, privacy, freedom of thought and speech, universal education, rights for working people, equality before the law, representative government and universal suffrage were little more than distant dreams.

This leadership’s abuse of the poor for their “own interests” has undergone little change around the world. The names and titles of their corrupted leaders have changed, but nothing more. Still, those with power and privilege use convenient myths to justify their wealth, political power, behaviour and the consequences for the dehumanized poor. The suppressed poor is still denied access to external resources, education and science, and are subjected to psychological, social, emotional deprivation.4,10,11,27,47 Third World Takers

However, Western leaders are not lone culprits in this. They partner with the corrupted political leaders of poor countries, especially in Africa. Boon27 refers to these African leaders as Third World Takers. For Boon,27 these Third World Takers have no discipline and they have siphoned billions of American dollars to secret Swiss bank accounts, while at the same time aid money and relief funding are stolen by them. We see these takers in leaders such as Mobuto Sese Seko of Zaïre, Jean-Bédel Bokassa of the Central African Republic, Milton Obote of Uganda, Daniel arap Moi and Mwai Kibaki of Kenya, more recently Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and may others still in the making. These executive political leaders abuse their own societies in their search for the materialism of the First World. They are par excellence targets of foreign corrupted political leaders as they can be used in schemes to steal from poor countries. Massive corruption ties together the hands of these local political leaders and the foreign political leaders, as with the Arms Deal between France and South Africa in the 1990s, as well as the enormous state capture under the ANC. These takers became the darlings of the West, who in this contaminated concubinage further shower these countries with so-called “aid” to their habitants and other financing just to get corrupted contracts via state capture. They know very well that this kind of window-dressing just increases the riches of the corrupted and crooked executive political leaders and their cronies, while the poor are getting poorer.27,84,85

Boon27 describes these takers as follows in a discussion that focuses on South African Black leaders27:51:

Why have there been so many one-party states and coup after coup? The reason is that, in the past, many African leaders have been totally and unapologetically self-serving. Yet the First World does not view Africa as different from itself for fear of discrimination. It is fundamentally different because Third World Africa, which is led largely by Takers, has no discipline. It is not governed according to the same ethics and values as either the First World or the tribal world, and therefore does not respond to them.

It is the blatant rape of these fragile societies by fellow Africans that makes the issue even more repugnant. The third World Takers are far more insidious and warped than the colonials ever were, yet this is exactly the behavior and attitude for which colonial settlers were criticized and expelled. The takers obviously learnt their appalling, self-serving lessons well!

However, an aversion to the Western powers like America’s rape of impoverished countries is growing worldwide. Bremmer88 reports on the slow but clearly emerging power of countries like China, Russia, the Gulf Arab States, India, Brazil and Turkey. They are turning their backs to the political and economical abuse and bullying by the West, especially by the US. This has not yet helped the masses in poor countries – all that has happened is that these emerging counties extend their corrupted influence within their own regions, taking over the abuse and exploitation of the poor. The age-old vicious circle is repeated, with the poor countries sometimes in a worse position than before.

The Afrikaners seemed to have drawn a lucky number in the lottery of birth. The Blacks drew a very bad number in 1652, primarily because of their lack of Whiteness. They were submitted to the same despotic Cape Authorities that caused the Afrikaners to move, but they were also often fought not only by the English, but also by the Boers. They were subjected to racism from 1652, but it intensified from 1910, reaching a climax between 1948 and 1994. It was only in 1994 that the situation of their political, social, economical and political deprivation started to turn for South African Blacks. The hierarchy changed, slowly bringing the Blacks out of their immense poverty, moving some of them to the middle level and a good number into the top level. They had been impoverished, with no access to basic and tertiary learning, cut off from opportunities to develop themselves, restricted to a limited part of the country to live and work in, but this changed for the better.9,26,27,85

White racist discrimination was the sole reason why Blacks suffered, not their birth. Martinez’s4 lottery of birth was not a permanent situation for South African Blacks. The 1994-dispensation has changed their number in the South African lottery of birth. Situations can change if the contaminating powers creating them are neutralized: in this case the corrupted NP-AB alliance and their extreme racism. The whole exercise of extreme racism was driven and held in place by the use of a White military, security and economic power. As soon as the artificial political system collapsed in 1994 and the immense political power of the Afrikaner executive political leaders was erased, the political balance was reverted to a Black empowerment; a process that neutralized to a great extent the Blacks’ unlucky lottery of birth.9,26,27,85

The lottery of birth can change quickly. Apartheid was an artificial and cold-blooded creation. The Afrikaners were racist and power hungry. This situation has been rectified, yet one cannot in all honesty say that the Black government has the interest of all citizens at heart.4,9,26,27,38

It is time that Black and White executive political leaders take the words of John Adams (quoted by Coggan86) to heart and better the failed leaderships so common in South Africa. Adams writes86:144:

No sooner has one party discovered or invented any amelioration of the condition of man, or the order of society, than the opposition party belies it, misconstrues it, misrepresents it, ridicules it, insults it and persecutes it.

It is impossible at the moment to sort the Black and White leaders into Clowns and Jokers; they equally fit both destinies.86

  1. Conclusions

Michael Barber47 quotes Ryszard Kapuściński’s description of the tragedy of the “honest and patriotic post-colonial leader” as follows47:xxiv:

Each one wants to do something good and begins to do it and sees, after a month, after a year, after three years, that it just isn’t happening, that it is slipping away, that it is bogged down in the sand…The politician begins to push too hard. He looks for a way out through dictatorship. The dictatorship then fathers an opposition. The opposition organises a coup. And the cycle begins anew.

Although there is much doubt if Kapuściński’s description of the “honest and patriotic post-colonial leader” is truly applicable to the level of integrity of most of South Africa’s executive political leaders, the leadership cycle he describes is surely applicable to South Africa. Most of our executive political leaders come into power on the strength of the promises they made, but it quickly becomes clear that they are ruling purely for their own interests and benefit. Often their rule deteriorates quickly and they resort to abusing the majority. Their small group of enslaved but benefitting followers are blinded by their leader’s false ideas and by their own gains, so that they remain uncritical. South Africa has been subject to such cycles for all of its political history from 1652 to 2018.

This article described various dissimilar and contrasting determinants that could possibly affect the functioning and development of executive political leaders. It is clear that certain determinants seem to be prominent, not only in shaping a leader’s leadership profile, but also in exacerbating immoral behaviour.9,11,12,20,22,24-27,29,31,35,44,47

South Africa’s problematic executive political leadership has made use of labels such as the Black problem, the Coloured problem or the White problem, depending on the racial identity of the ruler and the time of rule. It is a central political problem that is becoming more demanding and more complex to handle and it is intertwined with all the other political, economical and social conflicts. The growing incidence of political, racial, economical and social upheavals and conflicts are consequences of its executive political leaders’ immoral political thinking, planning and actions. South Africans are often still affected by flawed thinking that is strengthened by ideas that social opinion makers still hold. Flawed thinking is still very much part of our political leadership.9

It would be very difficult to solve South Africa’s legacy of racial, ethnic and political conflicts, especially by establishing good executive political leadership that could combat the flawed thinking and to nurture and support worthy persons who would serve every citizen well. The political problems caused by problematic executive political leaders must be addressed soon. It cannot be postponed liked JC Smuts did with the “Black problem” in 1908 when he said21:19:

When I consider the political future of the Natives in South Africa I must say that I look into shadows and darkness; and then I feel inclined to shift the intolerable burden of solving the sphinx problem to the ampler shoulders and stronger brains of the future.

Smuts, himself a brilliant person and an extraordinary executive political leader, failed to see that there is not a thing such as “stronger brains vested in the future.” Strong, good brains are always with us, the future depends on the courage we have to address this problem timeously. What Smuts should have done in 1908 was to have the courage to include human rights into the 1908 unification so that the equality of all the races of the country would be ensured. He should have prevented the inclusion of the biases of the Boers into the Constitution of the Union of South Africa. He paid more attention to the political needs of the Boers, and in ignoring the political, economical and personal rights of Blacks he put South Africa on the road to becoming a political minefield. Many of our executive political leaders seem to have this same inability for strategic thinking, risk-taking and reading the future. They tend not to do any introspection to see and to understand the true motives that drive their behaviour as executive political leaders.

Martinez4 states that decades of conditioning has taught people that greed is good, that society is an illusion and that people tend to get what they deserve. It became determinants driving our behaviour. Political leaders from both sides of the racial divide are guilty of this, basically because of their abuse of the masses in an effort to realize their own selfish interests. Martinez writes4:381:

We have been sold an impoverished vision of humanity, one that binds our imagination and erodes our hope. We are told this is freedom. Deep down we know this I a myth – one that is promoted to justify a world of destruction, exploitation and injustice. Behind the technical debates of economists, the ideological rows of politicians, the pursuit of corporate profit and the passionate protests of the public the most important question we can ask is: what is life for? To compete, accumulate and dominate? Or is it to love and be loved – to create, share and experience beauty?

The executive political leaders of both the Afrikaner Nationalists and the ANC have become involved with destruction, exploitation and injustice as part of their leadership. It is for this reason that we call their actions politically delinquent behaviour. It seems as if the mental and social distortions some of them held to have made it impossible to love and be loved, to create, share and experience beauty. In the meantime, the people of South Africa are suffering.4,9

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  79. Wiid JA. Politieke ontwikkeling, 1872-1896. In: AJH Van Der Walt, JA Wiid, AL Geyer. Geskiedenis van Suid- Afrika. Cape Town: Nasou; Annon.
  80. Chomsky N. Occupy. Parktown: Penguin; 2012.
  81. Stiglitz JE. The Euro and its threat to the future of Europe. London: Allen Lane; 2016.
  82. Gandhi E. It’s time we really get to know each other across the racial divide. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2018 Mar. 18; p. 21.
  83. Omar M. Indians don’t need BEE handouts to get ahead. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2017 Oct. 22; p. 20.
  84. Basson A, Du Toit P. Enemy of the People. Cape Town: Jonathan Ball; 2017.
  85. Pauw J. The President’s Keepers. Cape Town: Tafelberg; 2017.
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  87. Mason P. Post Capitalism. London: Penguin; 2015.
  88. Bremmer I. Superpower. New York: Penguin; 2015.


Not commissioned; Externally peer-reviewed.


The author declares that he has no competing interest.


The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa.

An appraisal of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa: 1652 to 2018. Part 2: The entities in government and society that executive political leaders used to aid their political behaviour

Gabriel P Louw

iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6190-8093

Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa

Corresponding Author:

Prof. Dr. GP Louw

Email: profgplouw@gmail.com

Keywords: appraisal, characteristic, constitution, dynamics, guarantee, hypocrisy, integrity, leadership, liberator, mindset, organization, platform, regime.

Ensovoort, volume 38 (2018), number 6:2

1. Background

1.1 Introduction

In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing. (Theodore Roosevelt).1: !88

Sound decision-making is one of the primary duties that executive political leaders must fulfil every day. It is an essential requirement before one could become a good executive political leader and to stay on in a leadership position. How diligently executive political leaders keep all the promises they made to their voters during their election campaigns and the degree to which they successfully do the things prescribed by their letters of appointment, are two very different issues in modern politics. Sound decision-making as a characteristic of good leadership and good governance by executive political leaders have become problematic, even in the best democracies. It was with good reason that the late president Roosevelt made the above clear distinction between good and bad decision-making. Research confirms that executive political leaders seldom do “the best thing to do” in decision-making today. Good decision-making has become a rarity. Voters have become used to massive wrongs and corrupt decision-making, often bringing nations to the verge of disaster and the rest of the world to despair. Bad decision-making goes deeper than mere error; it often testifies of immoral behaviour on the side some executive political leaders, primarily to benefit themselves at the cost of society.1-7

Roosevelt’s1 foresight about leaders who do wrongful things or who do nothing at all goes much deeper: it points to a constant growing stream of failed and bad executive political leaders in modern politics. Hard evidence shows that many of the promises that leaders present to their voters remain “true deeds in words.” Political leaders promise voters a wonderful future where they will do only good things, and they shout these promises loudly from public platforms during their election campaigns, but these promises die away as remnants of political fraud that historians can later research. These leaders, often highly talented persons, seem to deviate from the path of serving the voters and the public deliberately and selfishly. Roosevelt classifies “the wrong thing” and “nothing” as negative decisions that one would associate with bad executive political leaders and their regimes. However, the growing group of immoral politicians would often view these negative acts as positive. They see their poor leadership behaviour as equal to doing the right thing in Roosevelt’s eyes. Such leaders enter the political domain because it gives them the opportunity to do as they please.1-7

Politics, especially in democracies, has become a haven for crooks and political hooligans, basically because open systems of rule and over-seeing the country’s interests, are meant only for executive political leaders of high integrity. In South Africa, the President, as the top executive political leader, is awarded immense power. The Constitution and the Chapter 9 institutions are open to easy manipulation by him and his cronies if they are crooks. Many other public and private institutions are also vulnerable. 2,4,8-12

There has been frequent reference to possible state and private capture by executive political leaders in South Africa in the recent past, although the practice dates back to 1652. It seems to be a subject that needs an appraisal.

The aim of this article is to determine and describe the entities in government and society that executive political leaders used to aid their political behaviour.

Entities for the purposes of this article refer to the establish bodies and systems that function alongside government and within the greater society to develop, manage and steer a government’s abilities and potentials. Such entities see to it that the specific and the general obligations, duties, instructions and legal principles embedded in these entities can function without obstruction at all times. These entities can be physical or abstract in function and legal recognition, depending on their place, need and function in society and within the government set-up. In this research these entities include: the Constitution and Parliament, democracy, population composition, and media houses.

2. Method

The research was done by means of a literature review. This method has the aim of building a viewpoint from the available evidence as the research develops. This approach is used in modern historical research where there is a lack of an established body of research, as is the case with the established entities that executive political leaders use as the basis of their political behaviour. The sources include articles from 2017, books from the period 1944 to 2018 and newspapers for the period 2017 to 2018. These sources were consulted to determine and to describe the established entities in society and government that executive political leaders use as the basis of their political behaviour and to put thoughts, views and opinions on the South African political leadership in perspective.13-15

The research findings are presented in narrative format.

3. Results and Discussion

3.1 Introduction

This article primarily focuses on the established entities within the South African society and government that executive political leaders rely on or abuse in their actions, be it good or bad actions. Some of these entities may at times to a certain extent act as determinants in the development and functioning of executive political leaders, but in general their role as determinants is very limited. They are, as said, mostly used as means that executive political leaders with established ideas use to influence the thinking, planning and behaviours of other persons, especially their followers.

The various factors that influence the development of executive determinants and that can play a role in shaping the behaviours of executive political leaders, are discussed in depth in the next article (Part 3).

The discussion in this article addresses the following subdivisions:

  • 3.2 The inherent characteristics of stupidity, self-promotion, opportunism and flawed thinking of executive political leaders as drivers of their political behaviour.
  • 3.3 The use of the latent receptiveness of the South African Constitution and Parliament for criminal and political abuse by executive political leaders.
  • 3.4 The latent receptiveness of democracy for criminal and political abuse by executive political leaders.
  • 3.5 The use of South Africa’s majority, minority, homogeneous and heterogeneous populations by executive political leaders.
  • 3.6 The odd good executive political leader versus the organized hostility of the media houses.
  • 3.7 Flawed thinking and social dysfunction as dynamics in the immoral behaviours of executive political leaders.

3.2 The inherent characteristics of stupidity, self-promotion, opportunism, flawed thinking and social dysfunction of executive political leaders as drivers of their political behaviour

3.2.1 The Palkhivala description of obstinance16

The fact that political leaders from all races and ethnic groups, educated and uneducated, from richer or poorer backgrounds and at all levels of politics show immoral behaviour brings to mind the work of Professor Nani Palkhivala16, a seasoned and world-renowned Indian academic, lawyer, diplomat, politician, philosopher and writer. He sees this as a complex problem. Our political leaders are supposed to be learned and wise men, morally above reproach, but often this is not the case, so that they contaminate society, often destroying the lives of innocent individuals.

Palkhivala16 regards the use of the entities that are available in a democracy as central to this dynamic where political leaders strive to gain political power and personal riches. Sometimes they desire power and riches only for themselves, at other times a small group of allies would benefit. Palkhivala16 attempts to understand why immoral political leaders so readily abuse these entities to reach their wicked goals. He regards this abuse as something that is steered by a variety of negative traits, thought processes and dispositions that he sees as integral parts of the kind of leader that emerges in our modern society. These traits include stupidity, self-promotion, opportunism and flawed thinking. This range of negative traits serve as “energies” or “drivers” for these leaders’ thinking, planning and decision-making, especially as it relates to the abuse of the platforms of society or the government for their sole selfish interests. Palkhivala16 classifies this odd behaviour among political leaders under a very descriptive name: wooden-headedness.

The selective immoral political behaviour of executive political leaders that renders them failed leaders, leaves Palkhivala with a question of why.16:297 Why do they do this? Why do political leaders blindly ignore the simple advice of Theodore Roosevelt?1 These questions compelled Palkhivala16 to look for clear reasons why executive political leaders and their regimes fail to be “good”. In his search for an answer to his “why”, he found that the failure of executive political leaders is a universal phenomenon, also reflected by well-known world leaders and the regimes of world powers. He writes16:297:

A study of history, regardless of the period or the type of government in authority, makes one wonder why man makes a poorer show of government than almost any other human activity. In the field of governmental activity, wisdom – which may be defined as judgment acting on experience, common sense, available knowledge, and a keen appreciation of probability – is amazingly absent. Why do men in high office so often act contrary to the way that reason points and enlightened public interest enjoins? Why does intelligent mental process seem to be so often paralyzed?

Palkhivala16 points out that this phenomenon, sometimes totally self-destructive, repeats over and over in the world’s history. Somehow leaders do not learn from the mistakes of others or their own errors. They are impervious of the negative outcomes of their “bad” behaviour, not only for other people, but also for themselves.

Palkhivala further interrogates this matter as follows16:297:

Why did successive ministries of George III – that “bundle of imbecility” as Dr. Johnson called them collectively – insist on coercing rather than conciliating the thirteen Colonies which, as a result, broke away and declared themselves as a republic, destined to be the most powerful in the world – the United States of America? Why did Napoleon invade Russia and Hitler repeat the same mistake? Why did the Kaiser’s government resume unrestricted submarine warfare in 1917 despite the clear warning that this would result in the entry of the United States into the war? Why did Chiang Kai-shek refuse to heed any voice of reform or alarm until he woke up to find that his country had been irretrievably lost to him?

When it comes to the immense negative impact of wooden-headedness on executive political leaders’ governmental behaviour, Palkhivala writes16: 296-297:

Wooden-headedness is a characteristic feature of governments. Wooden-headedness assesses a situation in terms of preconceived fixed notions while ignoring or rejecting any contra indications. In short, it is the obstinate refusal to learn from experience. These fixed notions bring in the most cases the focus on the selective aims or interests of the executive political leader and his intimate group inside the nation, not on the aims or interests of all the groups inside the nation, cancelling thus the overarching mandate which goes with a good executive political leader and his regime. It serves as a short-cut for the political leader – and possibly his intimate group also – to ignore willingly and intently the interests and human rights of the total nation, as well the risks involved by his under-par and malfunctioning leader’s behaviour for the total nation.

Although the description “wooden-headedness” creates the impression that the behaviour includes only stupidity, Palkhivala16 gives a detailed description of what he means with this mindset among executive political leaders. He focuses on flawed thinking, planning and behaviour in such a leader’s political behaviour. Palkhivala16 reflects further on the wooden-headed leader’s self-centeredness and disrespect for the rights of others. This description brings the possibility of psychopathic thinking as a trait in the mindset of executive political leaders to the foreground.

It is an error to think that only authoritarian states and their leaders, like Nazi Germany under Adolf Hitler, boast leaders who act foolishly without any grounding in reality or a view to the future, and with a total disregard for the consequences of their acts. Democratically elected leaders and the governments of established democracies act with the same political foolishness and oppressiveness. Examples include the British Empire in its early days in relation to its American and other colonies, White Apartheid South Africa in relation to Blacks, the Americans in relation to Saddam Hussein of Iraq, etcetera.1,6,7,9

Barbara Tuchman16: 29 takes the discussion on the paucity of good leadership further by saying that governments act unwisely because short-sighted politicians are driving and managing it. She argues that the politicians’ arrogance prevents them from admitting error (and if they are in an act of foolishness, they just won’t turn back in fear of losing face). Their immense thirst for political power makes them unstoppable within their role as mandated executive leaders. They lack self-confidence and magnanimity, which leads to inappropriate acts of grandeur in an effort to demonstrate self-capability. They seek to create an image as formidable executive political leaders through inappropriate behaviour (which can be immoral). Ultimately immoral acts overshadow many leaders’ initial intentions to lead effectively in terms of good executive actions. According to Tuchman’s16 postulation, it is just impossible for certain persons to function normally as responsible and good executive political leaders, bringing various forms of possible psychological pathology to the foreground. This opinion of Tuchman16 strongly supports Palkhivala’s16 view that executive political leaders’ immoral behaviour may be rooted in psychopathology.

In line with the views of Palkhivala16 and Tuchman16 on the failure of executive political leaders to act properly within the democratic set-up, Martinez6 postulates6:88-89:

Pyramid structures concentrate power in the hands of those who sit atop them. This power is always open to abuse. It enables the ideas and the priorities of a small number to be imposed on the lives of millions – ideas and priorities that have a strong tendency to include wide-ranging privileges for those doing the imposing.

3.2.2 The Boon description of takers9

Boon9, working specifically on profiles of South African executive political leaders and in line with Palkhivala’s16 so-called wooden-headedness, sketches an extremely troubling picture of the existing conditions that make good executive political leadership an impossibility. He identifies the traits of being unapologetic, ill-disciplined, self-serving, self-enriching, opportunistic and an immense lack of feeling and empathy, as central to the characters of immoral executive political leaders. For Boon9, as for Palkhivala16 and Tuchman16, these negative traits form the dynamics or energies driving the executive political leaders’ immoral. He describes this kind of immoral political leaders as “takers.” Their political behaviour focuses on milking the members of their political party, their society and the government, thus taking. The impact of these politico-pathological mindsets, as reflected in flawed thinking and immoral behaviour, undermines democracy in all its facets.9

Boon’s9 view on the present state of South African leadership is that the country is being run more and more by the takers. It is clear that not even a specific racial or cultural group as a unity is benefitting from the present South African political system, but only an exclusive group (gang) of crooks under the executive political leaderships of takers. The executive political behaviour and thus the reign of the country is based on the flawed thinking and social dysfunction of these leaders. This dark view of crooks running the present-day South African politics and society, all driven by immorality and crookery, is supported by various other studies.17-25

Boon9 writes with concern9:51:

Why have there been so many one-party states and coup after coup? The reason is that, in the past, many African leaders have been totally unapologetically self-serving. Yet the First World does not view Africa as different from itself for fear of discrimination. It is fundamentally different because the Third World Africa, which is led largely by Takers, has no discipline. It is not governed according the same ethics and values as either the First World or the tribal world, and therefore does not respond to them.

About the so-called takers, Boon9 writes9:48:

But there is a dark and utterly destructive cloud to the Third World: a massive movement of individuals turning their backs on their traditions and discipline and, in doing so, the closeness of community and ubuntu. They replace it, not with the best of the First World, but often with the very worst. They are self-serving and care nothing for the community other than what it can deliver to them personally. They seek to take, not to give or share. Many of these people have managed to educate themselves very well. They know how to manipulate Westerners and how to use, to their own ends, their once-upon-a-time tribe. They are part of the Third World but they also exist in the First World. We shall call this group the “Takers”. Takers have nothing integrity nor discipline. They serve the dollar-god of power and will do anything for it. Unfortunately, the tribal way has become confused with Takers…

But the takers seldom act on their own, often they have well-masked Western accomplices. These powerful accomplices not only steer the takings that the executive political leaders take, they also offer military and financial support for these corrupt political leaders so that they can execute, unobstructed and with ease, their immoral reign, driven by their delinquent mindsets. These leaders penetrate politics through their masterly use of the established platforms like the parliament, etc. This ganging-up of delinquent minds was well illustrated by the crimes against humanity perpetrated against the Iraqi people under the executive political leadership of Saddam Hussein and his Western accomplices.9,26 Chomsky says of those pre-war times during the Bush administration26:107: “If Iraqis ever see Saddam Hussein in the dock, they want his former American allies shackled beside him”.

Political wrongdoings of whatever kind, seem to be perpetrated mostly by established criminal-minded persons who find the political and social environment’s rewards of power and riches very attractive and satisfying, and very easy to obtain. Executive political leaders are sometimes driven by extreme stupidity and psychopathology as Palkhivala16 and Tuchman16 suggest (in some cases making their behaviour non compos mentis), but as Boon9 clearly indicates with the takers, their political delinquency also reflects strongly the presence of well-planned and sound thinking. Boon’s9 and other studies3,8,26,27 reflect that these leaders are masters at identifying and selecting vulnerable established platforms from which to launch their foul play. They can overrun and capture South Africa’s public and private institutions, as evidenced in the last eight years.3,8,9,26,27

3.3 The use of the latent receptiveness of the South African Constitution and Parliament for planned criminal and political abuse and immorality by executive political leaders

The South African Constitution and the Parliament as established institutions offer immense opportunity for mismanagement and abuse. Both have a latent receptiveness in their foundations that crooked political leaders can with ease abuse as a gateway to the state coffers and to law making to enrich and to empower themselves. The Constitution and the Parliament are excellent platforms to use for state capture. This has been well illustrated since the ANC’s political elites came to power in 1994. A well-positioned and powerful immoral executive political leader can, by using his learned knowledge and experiences of statutory institutions and by implementing his corrupt thinking into the system, introduce fraud, corruption, theft and a general culture of crookery into the frameworks of the South African Constitution and the Parliament. Such a nest of crookery is very difficult to touch with the efforts of the general public and even the law-makers of the opposition in Parliament. This culture circles around a band of crooks that prey on established platforms like the Constitution and the Parliament. They plan these actions well and they aim to enrich themselves with intent. The evidence is strong that executive political leaders with immoral political thinking, planning and actions and seasoned in political delinquency, are central role players in these political wrongdoings.8,17,20,22,24,25, 27,28

Corrupt executive political leaders are in reality nothing other than members of well-oiled mafia networks that have infiltrated the socio-economic and political systems of countries worldwide. They are impossible to erase, as the Italian state’s endless fights with their mafia confirms. South Africa’s fruitless fight against its own large number of takers and the Zupta mafia, especially since 1994, equals this situation. These wrongdoers never learn from the consequences (they do not want to) and never ever stop; as soon as one political crook or despot is eliminated from the political system, the next one stands ready to take over and to better the well-oiled machine of corruption.4,8,22,28-34

It seems that there is an “inheritance of taking” in place for the next generation, ensuring the endless continuation of takers in the political system. This is evident from the continuation of a subculture of corruption in the greater South African society and the opportunities for easy profit-taking by corrupt politicians in government institutions where statutory rules are missing or have degenerated. The negative impact of political takers on a country’s people, its justice and political systems, can be immense. It can indeed lead to a dual governmental system where the Constitution and the Parliament become subordinate to the taker regime, as has happened over the last eight years in South Africa with Luthuli house becoming the government of the day. However, this is not the full story: South Africa had become, up until Zuma’s ousting, a tripartite governmental system, with Zuma and his cronies at the top in charge of the various Chapter 9 institutions and the Constitution, the so-called Zupta regime. The second leg of was Luthuli house and the ANC followers who believe foolishly that they are in charge. The third leg was the castrated Parliament and its “frozen” law makers.4,8,22,28-34

The remnants of the Zupta regime and the political leaders who formed part of this unholy union will not depart quickly, notwithstanding the fact that Jacob Zuma has been kicked out. It will take long to reinstate a regime of good governance accompanied by good executive political leaders in South Africa, if ever. Buccaneering politicians have taken rooted in the platforms of the Constitution and Parliament, they cannot be removed simply with the ousting of a president. The loot is too great to abandon without a few more tricks. The delinquent executive politicians have an arsenal of powers still at their disposal to terminate any “attack” on their power. It must be noted that the temporary acting president, Cyril Ramaphosa, fully approves of the empowerment of the Luthuli-house parliament as the top decision maker on all South African affairs. The takers are back in the South African political system, using its institutions for their own gain and in line with their flawed thinking. The most notable of takers did not leave with Zuma. Citizens should still fear them as they are devastating the coffers of the country by means of the Constitution and Parliament.17,25,35-37 Note Mthombothi’s remark21:25: “The rogues and the scoundrels are not only having a great time; they’re in charge.”

The capture of the Constitution and the Parliament has deeper rotten roots. The Zupta regime captured the political heart of the ANC as a party and corrupted it. The ANC’s monopoly in South African politics provides criminal politicians with easy access (and knowledge of how and where they can abuse the system) to the Constitution and the Parliament. Tshabalala38, with good reason, warns38:13: “Beware, the snake might be dead but those who share its secrets can still bite.”

It seems as if South African politics attracts more crooked-minded persons than persons of good character. This happens for a reason: the latent receptiveness of the South African Constitution and Parliament makes them easy platforms from which executive political leaders can easily launch their criminal campaigns. Two facts are clear: our politics makes corruption easy and crime pays with money and power. Nelson Mandela warned early in his term that many crooks had become politicians of the ANC-regime after 1994.39 This sincere warning was undoubtedly in vain. Widespread corruption under the auspices of the ANC is running the county down and has started gobbling up Mandela’s beloved ANC. The investigative journalist Gumede18 focuses on the most prominent culprit guilty of this delinquency when he writes18:13: “Zuma has single-handedly reconfigured South Africa’s post-apartheid politics. His actions have reduced the ANC’s political dominance, intellectual hegemony and leadership of the country broadly, and in black society in particular.” The editor of the Sunday Times is also very clear on this issue in his editorial column!0: 20: “This space is not big enough to accommodate the long list of transgressions President Jacob Zuma has committed since he first occupied the high office.” What he fails to say is that Zuma is only one of many executive political leaders with long lists of transgressions since 1994 and that many are waiting in the wings to indulge in the feast of South Africa’s assets.

3.4 The latent receptiveness of democracy for criminal and political abuse by executive political leaders

The abuse of political power, as reflected above, often lies in an abuse of democracy by the crooked-minded politician. Democracy, just like the Constitution and Parliament, lends itself to abuse. In South Africa it has aided many immoral politicians in their efforts towards self-enrichment, self-empowerment and state capture. It is an easy vehicle for majority groups and political parties that have been infiltrated by corrupt leaders. South Africa has been an excellent example of this mechanism from 1652.8,17,22,27,29-31,36,40-42

Democracy does not give the people control of the country, although many voters think so. Democracy, as a dynamic, energizing political process, only means that the people have the opportunity to accept or reject a candidate. However, what a candidate promises before the election and what he does after he has been elected, are two very different things. Chomsky writes about the arrogance of politicians who ignore the voters (and true democracy) after they have been elected26:82-83: “The political leadership will pat them on the head and say, ‘I’m for you, vote for me’. The people involved will have to understand that maybe they’ll do something for you, that only if you maintain substantial pressure can you get elected leadership to do things – but they’re not going to do it on their own, with very rare exceptions.” This is evident from the political dynamics in what is actually a sound democracy. The post-1994 democracy of South Africa as an institution has fallen victim to false political leaders, making it a false democracy. The reason for this is its latent receptiveness for criminal and political abuse by executive political leaders.8,17,22,27,29-31,36,40-42

Chomsky26 elaborates on false politicians cum failed executive political leaders. He describes them as persons who have been contaminated by arrogance and malign intentions. These leaders, empowered by their high-ranking positions inside the country’s executive political hierarchy, prey on the defenceless and vulnerable public and other statutory institutions when the country’s political and social systems collapse. The dynamics of immorality has penetrated and contaminated the system and the psyche of these executive political leaders long ago. They are untouchable and an unavoidable enemy. Chomsky reflects on the manner in which such leaders force their immense political power on the system26: 14:

It does not matter whether these leaders are elected or appointed, or hold their office through blood or advantage of wealth or even as the result of some level of educational attainment useful to a ruling elite.

Coggan writes as follows on the negative dynamics brought about corrupt leaders40:2:

The cynicism of voters in the developed world is, in part, the result of a series of scandals that have shown politicians willing to cheat on both their expenses and their spouses, and to break the solemn promises they made to voters before their election. Many people also have the feeling that, in practice, there is little difference between the main parties; that, however citizens vote, policies will not change.

It is with good reason that Coggan40 expresses great concern about the abuse of democracy by politicians when he concludes40:ix:

All this inspired me to look back at the early debates about democracy, and I found that the issues that concern us today also worried Plato, Aristotle and the American founding fathers. In turn, that made me worry that democracy might be more fragile than most people assume.

The new German ambassador to South Africa and a man seasoned in the dynamics of South African politics since 2007, Martin Schäfer43, points out the fragile state of present-day democracies worldwide, including the South African democracy. When asked to comment on the present South Africa on the 4th of February 2018, he said with great concern43:12: “Ten years ago, we would not have had any doubts about the stability of democracies and the rule of law in the West but beyond. We cannot be so sure any more.”

Professor Deon Rossouw44, CEO of The Ethics Institute, looks at the negative impact of delinquent thinking, planning and behaviour on our democracy and state capture from another angle when he writes44:18:

More than at any other time since the dawn of new South Africa, people are agreeing that there is a clear and urgent need for ethical leadership in the country. The cost of getting us to this level of awareness has been painfully high — it took corruption on a grand scale in the public and private sectors being exposed…

Holomisa45, also very negative about the capture of the country’s democracy for abuse by the crooked leader, elaborates as follows on the situation45:18: “An attitude of animosity has captured South Africa. A culture of mistrust, contempt and one-upmanship. A culture of destruction.

These comments bare evidence of how immoral executive political leaders have captured the democracy. They have changed it into a failed democracy. Democracy made it possible for them to capture the state.

The rule of a country and its people is driven by two intertwined energies, namely money and politics. He who has the money rules the politics and he who has the politics rules the money. Chomsky writes about this link that the26:55: “… concentration of wealth leads almost reflexively to concentration of political power, which in turn translates into legislation, naturally in the interests of those implementing it: and that accelerates what has been a vicious cycle leading to, as I said, bitterness, anger, frustration and a very atomized society.”

More than a hundred years ago the political financier Mark Hanna was asked what he regarded as important in politics. He answered26:82: “The first is money, the second one is money and I’ve forgotten what the third one is.” Is it different today? Chomsky says26:82: “Today it’s much more extreme. So yes, concentrated wealth will, of course, try to use its wealth and power to take over the political system as much as possible, and to run it and do what it wants, etc.” This dualistic empowerment is the reason why crooked person are attracted to politics.

Individual writers as Coggan40, Schäfer43, Rossouw44, Holomisa45 and Chomsky26 are not alone in their concerns about the many political crooks who have captured modern democracies and who are holding the citizens of these democracies at ransom. Other researchers are also vocal about the prominent role of corrupt political leaders and the creation of a culture of crookery. South Africans, Black and White, have since 1652 up to today been ruled by a range of surreptitious democratic rulers and their democracies. They leave few good memories.8,9,27-29,31,33,36,39,46,47-51

Boon9 possibly gives the best explanation of what democracy rule means and what mob rule means. This offers a very good guideline to evaluate the South Africa’s governance and political systems to get an idea of the degree to which it has been infiltrated by mob politicians over the years. In this indication Boon9 first describes a mob as a group of people who, in their selfish effort to reach their corrupt goals, use strategies devoid of any true democratic principles or traditions. These political mobsters are absolutely intolerant. They quickly eradicate all order, the presence of minorities and the rights and dignity of their opposition. Their coercive actions are often characterized by destruction, threats and killings and other similar brutalities. All their power is focused on the establishment of their reign. This mob does not respect the majority as the ruling entity, and any member of the majority who opposes them simply becomes part of the minority and is treated as such. Dissidents are forced to change their mindsets to accept the mob’s consensus on decisions or they pay greatly for their beliefs. Boon9 describes democracy as a statutory entity that seeks to understand minorities and to tolerate minorities. In a democracy the majority makes decisions in cooperation with the minority to obtain consensus, collectiveness and inclusiveness in decision making. It assures dignity, care and compassion for the minority and their opposition. Of the mob in practice, Boon writes9:75:

Without adequate focus on principles and positive values, democracy can easily be hijacked and become a mob. The mob then continues to call itself democratic as ‘the majority has decided’ on a course of action. But when the values of the group no longer underpin dignified, positive, democratic norms and aspirations, it is no longer a democracy; it is an unruly, negative and destructive mob. Russia, under Stalin, is an excellent example of such an abrogation and hijacking – complete shift from socialism to dictatorship and autocracy – and the ultimate result of mob rule.

But is Russia the only culprit when it comes to dictatorship and autocracy? What about South Africa under DF Malan? He changed the country from a “half-democracy” to a dictatorship and autocracy that supported the Afrikaner Nationalists in their practice of Apartheid. What about the ANC’s continuation of their pre-1994 unruly, negative, intolerant and destructive behaviour as a liberation movement to establish and maintain a dictatorship and autocracy in post-1994 South Africa?

When people are offered democracy, they welcome all the democratic rights that traditionally accompany democracy like a free press, competing political parties, an independent judiciary, etc. However, in today’s new socio-economical, personal and political environment, citizens expect far more from their executive political leaders in the form of better labour rights and a bigger share in the national gross domestic product (GDP). Of course they also want a sympathetic ear that would listen to their complaints and leaders who would do something about.8,18,22,27,29-31,36,40-42

In reference to above situation, Chomsky26 points out that the governments of many democracies have recently scored their lowest approval in history, while the ratings of the accompanying institutions are not much higher. He clearly reflects the dissatisfaction with false democracies lead by false leaders26:54:

The population is angry, frustrated, bitter – and for good reasons. For the past generation, policies have been initiated that have led to an extremely sharp concentration of wealth in a tiny sector of the population. In fact, the wealth distribution is very heavily weighted by, literally, the top tenth of one percent of the population, a fraction so small that they’re not even picked up on the census. You have to do statistical analysis to detect them.

Does the above sound strange for South Africa? Consider that the country had White radical economic transformation (WRET) from 1948 to 1994 and from 1994 ongoing Black radical economic transformation (BRET), where 10 per cent of the population steals at the cost of 90 per cent of the population simply by masterly use of democracy.

Failure to meet the usual demands and the many new needs and demands of modern voters creates doubt about the right and mandate of a “good” executive political leader to be in charge of the government and of the democracy. Many promising leaders lose standing with citizens as they have a new frame of reference with stricter criteria for leadership. In South Africa the response of citizens was effectively repressed by the country’s leaders since 1652. Prominent here is the use of suppressive legislation and the informal and formal management of disinformation. South Africans have become used to efforts to create false impressions of the noble intentions and characters of our political icons and saints.8,18,22,27,29-31,36,40-42

The failures of democracy are often a direct result of the public assuming that leaders are noble and able. However, the incompetent leaders who assume executive political leadership for selfish reasons know from the beginning that they would never be able to satisfy the demands and needs of the people. The immediate benefits overshadow the interests of their voters. Such persons are false leaders in a false democracy, and they gradually destroy any hope of ever establishing true democracy in societies. These leaders have skewed thinking and are focused on self-enrichment long before their voyage into politics. The current South African politics is at the mercy of this kind of leader.8,18,22,27,29-31,36,40-42

When one considers South Africa’s political history, it is clear that since 1652 false executive political leaders and regimes dubbed in crookery and delivering incompetence services had successfully captured the platform of democracy and had abused this platform. These leaders often acted contrary to true democracy; harming human decency, love for mankind, equality, and psychological and emotional normality. The political histories and biographies of some of these politicians reveal their poor judgement and their failure as persons and leaders in real life.8,9,20,27,30,31,33,39,52-54

Reckless political decisions and undemocratic behaviour has resulted in conflict from the side of with voting rights and the voiceless masses in the past. The great injustice that was Apartheid unfortunately shed a very negative light on those who come from a certain minority group, even if some do have the potential to be good executive political leaders that would benefit the greater society. Racism, discrimination and domination by any ruling group are unforgiveable, and it seems in South Africa unforgettable too. It leads to long-term estrangement and hostility between the conflicting groups. These conflicts are at the basis of the ANC’s outright rejection of the NP leaders Malan, Strydom, Verwoerd, Vorster, Botha and De Klerk as good executive political leaders, contrary to how they are seen in the eyes of the most Afrikaners and certain international sectors. The leadership of these persons also motivated the ANC’s decision to fight the Afrikaners and the NP with terrorism to overthrow their regime. The injustices of Apartheid is now engrained as permanent cultural and racial hatred in the mindsets of the most South Africans, undoubtedly a direct outcome of the flawed thinking of the false leaders of the NP as part of the two false White democracies (Union of South Africa and the Verwoerdian Republic). Unconditional, or even conditional acceptance of Malan, Strydom, Verwoerd, Vorster, Botha and De Klerk by Blacks was not and is not possible. These political leaders intentionally abused the platform of democracy for political gains. (However much hostility and aggression there is towards the present-day ANC-regime, their transgressions are in all honesty not an inch worse than the political regimes before 1994).8,9,20,27,30,31,33,39,52-54

We must take note of the phenomenon of a false democracy with false executive political leaders if we want to take care of our future in the new South Africa. South Africa becoming a sound democracy with a genuine democrat in charge after the recent Ramaphosa election is something that must first be seen to be believed. South Africans heard the same promises with Mandela, Mbeki and Zuma before.29 Gumede18 seems a little bit over-optimistic when he speaks about the “post-Zuma South Africa” and a bettered system to keep out false leaders and better safeguards to protect the South African democracy from becoming false again. His hope is a good guideline in our search for good executive political leaders and a good regime of governance. He writes18:13: “It is now very likely that the actions, decisions and behaviour of future leaders and governments will be scrutinized much more deeply by citizens, civil society, the media and democratic institutes.”

What Gumede18 must remember is that although Parliament gives the final vote on the president’s election, the ANC is still the majority party in Parliament. Their candidate for the state presidency is selected by only 5 000 ANC members before he arrives in Parliament for approval. Their integrity, as we see from the loyalty to and support of a corrupted Zuma as president for a very long time, is questionable. Does 5 000 ANC voters who choose on behalf of 56 million South Africans speak of true democracy?55

Ginsberg4 takes the criticism on this false democracy that South Africans created themselves a step further with his comments on our chaotic present Parliament representation4:98:

Unfortunately our new electoral system of proportional representation allows many MP’s to ride into Parliament on the backs of one or two party stalwarts. Under the previous constituency-based system these candidates would be compelled to go out and campaign in the field – in their constituency, where they would be forced to address the concerns of their fellow citizens. To make matters worse, since no Members of Parliament are currently directly elected, there are vast areas of South Africa that have no real voice or real representation in the national legislature, as the majority of members hail from a few large cities. At present many of our MP’s are among the most out-of-touch and unaccountable politicians South Africa has ever elected.

South Africa’s problems with good executive political leadership and good governance are to a great extent self-created in the form of its vulnerable state structures and a lack of legislation to put a process in place to keep out crooked politicians and to assure that South African voters experience true democracy under a true representative executive political leader of good standing. Over the years no efforts have been made to put a lock on the door of the platform democracy to keep out corrupt politicians. To the contrary, it seems as if the door was opened wide in 2012. So far no improvement has been evident under Ramaphosa – indeed, the chances of further misuse of the Constitution, Parliament and democracy further for political gain and the emergence of stronger and more corrupt executive political leaders until the 2019 general elections are very high. Every day there is more evidence for this suspicion.

The current South Africa, as before 1994, is a false democracy, created in the first place by the people themselves. We, the voters, ourselves opened the door for false political leaders to get entrance into the highest office of the country. We are wrong to blame Jacob Zuma for his tricks: it was we, the moaning South Africans, who created the opportunity for him to become president. We did the same with the incoming leader.25,36,37,42,55-57 The dynamics of corrupt politics that date from the days of Jan van Riebeeck seem to be too entrenched to be stopped.

We, the voters, have become uninvolved and passive spectators of the South African political failure that is our own doing. Boon9 uses the word spectator to describe South Africa’s passive “onlookers” who fail to better their negative position, a situation that needs their intervention. This label fits our passive South African onlookers who fail to take a stand against political crooks. The problem that Boon9 describes dates from South Africa’s earliest times. It is not a new phenomenon that came with the ANC regime. Indeed, the Afrikaner Nationalists were overwhelmed and manipulated from 1948 by their executive political leaders. They were also spectators from a distance. Boon9 allows us to look into a mirror. He writes9:99:

Spectators make up the greatest sector of humanity. These people are observers and critics, and they are only positive when the side is winning. They have a high concern for self and are very critical of change agents. Although negatively critical, they will very seldom do anything to change the circumstances they dislike. They simple prefer to get more vocal and more negative in their criticism of ‘appalling leadership’ when things do not work out to their satisfaction. Circumstances rarely work out to the satisfaction of spectators, so their primary characteristics are negativity and selfishness. I’m sure everyone has heard someone say: “They should do something about it. This is a disaster”.

Spectators never expose themselves and avoid the concomitant vulnerability at all costs. It is as if they instinctively know that by becoming vulnerable, they will be challenged and forced to become accountable for their own actions, views, utterances and behaviour. Spectators are characterized as negative, selfish and highly critical; they never expose themselves, refuse to accept accountability and are often devious.

If the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders could steer their followers to spectator-obedience in 1948, is it possible for the Afrikaners to change in 2018? If the Afrikaners failed to challenge their despotic leaders since 1948, how can we expect the ANC followers to take on its autocratic leaders since 1994? Wishful thinking! For many years we had given corrupt leaders the freedom to do what they want. The miserable state of our politics in 2018 confirms this.

South African politics in a sense mirrors the ironies of the replacement of the weak and corrupt King Sihanouk by the bloody revolution of extremist Communists in Cambodia. Malloch-Brown reflects5:80: “A weak king had been replaced by Communist butchers because the country lacked a democratic stage on which any other ending might have been played out.” Basically both the failed pre-1994 and post-1994 democracies of South Africa do not offer a political choice to its people that they can exercise to make a success of their lives. South Africa was and is a failed state, whichever way we look at it.

3.5 The use of South Africa’s majority and minority populations by executive political leaders for political gain

Executive political leaders have always and are still using the population of South Africa as a tool to make their immoral actions possible. It is also used by some delinquent executive political leaders as a platform to steer their dogmas, doctrines and ideologies and to penetrate and misuse the formal political system for their own gain. The structure of South African society developed slowly from 1652, and today this complex and layered society is used by politicians with ulterior motives. Since the early times of the British authorities at the Cape society was used as a very useful platform to steer new political dogmas, doctrines and ideologies. In 1910, with the founding of the Union of South Africa, political dogmas, doctrines and ideologies around a White minority against a Black majority, White and Black homogeneousness versus a South African heterogeneousness, were used as a gateway by the Whites to isolate Blacks for eighty-four years from any formal say in the government of the day. This skewed political thinking on the side of the White executive political leaders led them to capture society on many occasions since 1910. Apartheid and its racism, which are still dashing the hopes that South Africa would become a true Nation, are sad reflections of this.33,45,58-69

The next subdivisions provide an in-depth discussion of past and present misuse of the South African society as an easy gateway. The discussion focuses on how bad executive political leaders smuggled their ideas into South African politics to serve their own interests.

3.5.1 Majority versus minority populations

It is important to note that in most heterogeneous nations, the majority, empowered by an integrated democratic system, is allowed to rule over the minority groups through its executive political leaders as part of a model empowers all groups. Communist and despotic countries always portray their regimes as democratic, but in practice the majority has unlimited power over the minorities. The contrary can also happen, as was the case during Apartheid in South Africa. A minority ruled a majority as a result of White power that dates from 1652 at the Cape.6,7,40

Usually, the most disliked minority groups receive the worst treatment. This is usually a result of the disempowerment of minority groups, further strengthened by earlier conflicts between the two groups. Apartheid, practiced by the minority group of Afrikaners and the rulers until 1994, now out of government and political disempowered, is the direct reason for the discrimination against Afrikaners by the now ruling Black majority. The current treatment that Whites receive under the Black majority government is very different from the treatment that the other two minorities (seen as “Black” enough), the Coloureds and the Indians, receive. This is a good example of a majority versus minority rule where the “democratic” rights obtained by the Blacks as the majority after 1994, are abused to serve the political aims of the rulers.6,8,27,33,39,40,48 It is a typical mobster case according to Boon’s classification9. Revenge for the past is prominent.33 These outcomes are because the established platforms of majority and minority groups offer delinquent executive political leaders unlimited opportunities to take revenge and to give expression to their autocracy in the governmental, societal and political systems.

History shows that the majority’s “democratic” decision-making are not necessarily always the best option. The negative rule of the democratic majority on many terrains in South Africa after 1994, confirms this. A minority ruler is not better, basically because it is not democratically selected and thus not politically representative of every citizen. However, in some cases there could be good characteristics that can make a minority government better with the delivery of certain services and an appropriate ruler of the majority. The NP in South Africa from 1948 to 1994 was successful on certain economic, social and political terrains. However, they also abused their rule for the domination of Blacks. This tragic outcome is more or less similar to what is presently unfolding in South Africa, only in a reversed edition.17,18,27,29,30,31,33,70

In most cases the concept “minority” is racially, ethnically, educationally, religiously and culturally applicable, and thus enormously emotionally laden. This often freezes rational thinking on both sides of the majority-minority duality. The majority think they can rule a country as a whole better because they are backed by majority opinions, views, traditions, customs and beliefs in decision-making. The minority/minorities experience these opinions, views, traditions, customs and beliefs in decision-making on their behalf as false, vicious and outright revenge. As said, these hostilities are mostly based on race, religion or culture and they are often senseless attempts to correct historical wrongdoings. In South Africa these attitudes do not stem from the general population so much, but from executive political leaders on behalf of their people. These self-appointed political leaders’ decisions on behalf of the population are not based on the true sentiments of the voters. Most Blacks of South Africa do not hold grudges against Whites and have outgrown Apartheid. The true drivers behind these resentments are the executive political leaders and they keep hatred alive of their own interests. When leaders break through on these various population platforms, they gain power and riches, and also enormous support from the group (s) they pretend to “help”, giving them more energy to continue with their behaviour. 6,17,18,27,29,30,31,33,40,70

Delinquent executive political leaders often have a history of trauma and they lack insight into right and wrong because of social and mental dysfunction and underdeveloped superegos. They abuse issues like race, ethnicity, poverty, democracy and problematic minorities in their exclusive planning of their delinquent actions to benefit only themselves. The basis of their success is the upfront establishment of a strong group of corrupt cronies in power, as is the case with the untouchable sector inside the ANC in South Africa.6,8,17,18,27,29-31,33,40,49,51,54,70,71,73

On the legal dilemma (and tragic finality) of minorities in society, Coggan reports40:27:

The rights of those minorities are dependent on the goodwill of the majority, unless they are protected in law. Even then, the dilemma is not solved. Either the majority has the right to abolish or dilute such laws (in which case the minority’s rights are theoretically under threat and democracy is undermined) or they do not have the right (in which case the system is not fully democratic).

The above outcome of the infringement of minority groups’ political and human rights, even threatening their future existence as citizens in their homeland, is a direct consequence of the NP’s racist regime, which was overseen by ultra-strong executive political leaders and their cronies from 1948 to 1994 (including the Afrikaner Broederbond and the Dutch Reformed Church). This was an excellent example of a minority regime that governed falsely under the mantle of a so-called democracy (a false democracy upheld by the White military and other security forces and an oppressive constitution). The early conflict is now reversed, and we see more and more in post-1994 South Africa that the Constitution is frequently ignored the concept of democracy is stretched. This is particularly evident from the treatment Afrikaners receive from the majority ANC’s liberation-driven executive political leaders. There is a constant and continuous abuse of democracy, Parliament, etc. to penetrate the political systems, and to rule the masses without obstruction or limits.4,8,17,27,29-31,33,35,39,73

This vicious circle of political disorderliness present within the ANC was already spotted by Nelson Mandela’s official biographer, Anthony Sampson, in the middle-1990s. Sampson writes39:518:

By the end of Mandela’s first year as President, the honeymoon had ended. White South Africans were complaining bitterly about the crime wave, the falling rand, corruption scandals, upheavals in hospitals and schools. Liberals were disillusioned that a black government was ignoring their advice; other whites never thought it would work anyway.

The ANC’s executive political leaders (in this case Mandela and Thabo Mbeki, Mandela’s so-called “care-taker president”) quickly came to view the White minority as of little importance, and this included their rights as citizens. This is reflected in the following quotation by Sampson on behalf of Mandela39:518: “White South Africa had been a uniquely privileged society under previous regimes, protected both from Black competition and from the world marketplace, and found it hard to adjust to an open democracy”.

The Afrikaners, as a minority group, were betrayed by their executive political leader FW de Klerk, who was gobbled up by the ANC elite. For the Black liberator Mandela and his followers it was a case of finished and goodbye: you deserve it and that is it. The ANC leadership’s tendency to discriminate against the Afrikaners as a White quickly degenerated more under Mbeki and Zuma. It now seems as if the incoming executive political leader of the ANC and acting president, Ramaphosa, is starting to make the same noises as Zuma.17,21,27,29,30,32,33,35,54,74-78

3.5.2 Homogeneous versus heterogeneous populations

Boon1 emphasizes that discriminatory and suppressive behaviour elicits immediate reaction from minorities, sometimes with deadly consequences. When a group’s immediate future is threatened, they fall back on community and homogeneity. The endangerment of a person’s cultural identity – language, religion, beliefs, custom, opinions, traditions and race – brings homogeneity and heterogeneity to the foreground. These two concepts are far more comprehensive in meaning than simple majorities and minorities and immoral political leaders use and abuse them. It must be noted that these four concepts often function in an intertwined manner, sometimes positively and sometimes negatively.4,9,33,39,46-49,52-54,58,61,63-66,79,80

Homogeneity plays an important role when a minority group’s cultural identity is endangered by a homogeneous majority group that governs a country and that is guided by immoral leaders. The reactions that are elicited from such discrimination can be very specific and devastating. On the other hand homogeneity can play a very destructive role under the leadership of crooked politicians. The governing group’s members are mobilized through false ideas about the opposing groups. At the centre of such delinquent executive political leaders’ thinking lies the abuse of homogeneity for their own gain.4,9,33,39,46-49,52-54,58,61,63-66,79,80

People’s sense of belonging to a homogenous group is sometimes unexpectedly revived in times of danger. The insecurity that danger brings is amplified if they are a minority group. Boon writes in this regard9: 62-63:

If a community comes under threat, there is an immediate psychological shift back to the tribe. This happened among many communities in the period immediately prior to South Africa’s first democratic elections: the AWB, the Zulus, the English and the Jews. A quick check was casually done, just to establish where the community/tribe was, so that they could be contacted if the need arose; a check to get the tribe’s perspective on the treat. The same thing occurred in business.

The realities of the African environment do not allow us to deny tribalism, although some people do. Hopefully, truly free and enlightened people do not choose to revert to tribe whether they like it or not.

Prominent is here the “phenomenon of return” of passive members to their tribe or group as a safe-haven like as in the distant past. They want to be lead out of danger. The point of focus here is that they fall in behind the (old) executive political leaders of their tribe. We saw this outcome after 1902 to 1908 with the Boers in the two Boer republics (then turned into British colonies): gathering themselves around their old Transvaal and Free State burgher groupings and behind their old Transvaal and Free State executive political leaders like Smuts, Botha, Hertzog, De Wet and other. Executive political leaders then have to act as the guardians of the minority and homogeneous group (in the Boers’ case, the Transvaal and Free State Burghers) against the majority’s executive political leadership’s power (the British Government, the British South African Colonial Authority and the liberal Cape Dutch of the Cape Province). The leaders have to face and fight off the threats to the minority.4,9,33,39,46-49,52-54,58,61,63-66,79,80

But, as Boon9 says, as soon as a group experiences threats and is marginalized on the grounds of their features and characteristics, they start forming new groups. They revert back to tribal or group support, as Boon9 illustrates. Often these unanchored and bewildered minorities fall prey to unethical political leaders and they submit to them as a last hope to survive or to gain back their previous better positions. The AWB and its executive leadership after 1994, and the ANC- and the PAC-leaderships before 1994, as well as the NP in 1948, are excellent examples of organizations that became attractive safe-havens for factions of the population. In some cases these executive political leaders – like that of the NP after 1948 and the ANC after 1990 – become more than just guiders as result of the dire need and mass numbers of their new followers. They receive a mandate to think, to plan and to act on behalf of their confused followers, notwithstanding their own internal rotten political characteristics and behaviour. The executive political leadership characteristics that have become embedded in the leadership of the NP and the ANC started as corrupted bonds to steer and to guide their new generation of executive political leaders. This creates a vicious circle of more bad executive political leadership. 8,27,33,39

Louw33 comments on the contaminating potential of executive political leaders when he describes how Afrikaners surrendered their independent thought to their leaders33:218-219:

Afrikaner status, Afrikaans as an exclusive own Afrikaner language, Afrikaner radical economic transformation, Afrikaner state capture, the racial purity of the Afrikaner, race separation, the limitation of Black politics, Afrikaner social and economical empowerment, Afrikaner nation identification, Afrikaner group identity above individuality, etc., became the dominant propaganda of the Malan era.

For the Afrikaners, especially the bruised and vulnerable Northern Afrikaners still battling with their psychological scars after the Second Anglo Boer War, this Afrikaner messiah [DF Malan] and his message were like manna from heaven. Extreme apartheid was born, driven daily by a growing authoritarian Afrikaner leadership who gradually broke down individual thinking, planning and decision-making of the ordinary Afrikaner in exchange for the establishment of an exclusive Whiteman’s utopia. The ordinary Afrikaners’ dependence on their NP-AB-DRC leaders to meet all their needs as citizens in time became internalized in most of the post-1910 Afrikaners and the following three generations up to 1994. It not only led to grand apartheid to manage the ever-growing and ever-present “Black danger”, but also contributed to the rigid and ruthless reinforcement of apartheid for nearly five decades to follow.

The “goodness” or “badness” of political leaders is often linked to the racial or ethnic tension that accompanies the person’s reign. Such tensions re-awaken people’s sense of belonging to either the majority or the minority group. It also rekindles feelings of revenge. Conflicts that had been over rise again (think for example of the Great Trek and how these ideas were rekindled during the First and Second Anglo Boer Wars). Past conflicts and ideas are rekindled however inapplicable they may be, because followers want to go back to what worked in the past. This happened in 1948 with the Afrikaner Nationalists. They were guided by outdated and dangerous ideas. The immoral ideas that led to the changes in 1948 date from 1908. The founding fathers of Afrikanerism elicited strong feelings of resentment directed at English-speaking White South Africans, dissident Afrikaners and Black South Africans. Outdated racist ideas with their foundation in the Cape of the 1700s were invigorated by Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders (persons like DF Malan, HF Verwoerd and BJ Vorster, with a smack of religion and/or Nazism into their political mindsets) and became engrained in the mindsets of many very naïve Afrikaners. They used these ideas and emotional appeals to gain power. 4,9,33,39,46-49,52-54,58,61,63-66,79,80

Racism was formally introduced in South Africa by Whites in 1652. Racism is still very much alive in present-day South Africa, now kept alive also by Blacks. All of these centres on majority versus minority and homogeneity versus heterogeneity, and all the entities are at the disposal of leaders who want to profit from this. Leaders use the problems between groups to gain political ground. South Africa has always been a mixture of races and it will remain one, which means that there will always be racial and ethnic minorities. The people of the country should wisely and calmly oust delinquent executive political leaders and prevent them from using the countries institutions as a gateway for abuse.

Boon9 writes as follows about the racial dynamics in South Africa9: 63:

There is no point in denying that ethnicity exists. It simply does, whether one likes it or not. It is in the context in which the tribe is seen that is important. If it is a support group or away of life, there is no problem. But when ethnicity is used to fan hatred of other groups, evil is being done.

Some of the post-1994 leaders are power hungry and corrupt, and they were transferred from the liberation movement directly to the government. Many have become untouchable icons. This obscures the efforts to executed pure government: the overwhelming number of delinquent political leaders who abuse the different platforms will be difficult to eliminate from politics.39

3.5.3 Critical perspective on the role of divisions such as majority, minority, homogeneity and heterogeneity in political manipulation

It seems as if democracies and their executive political leaders function best where the population is homogeneous, either by birth or by the gradually incorporation of different races, ethnicities and cultures into a “mixed” new, homogeneous nation, as has happened in the USA to a great extent over a period of 400 years. Although the American Dream of a homogeneous American people seemed to work for a long time, this unity is now slowly starting to crumble, bringing minorities and racism and ethnicity to the foreground. In the USA many of the minorities are moving slowly into a non-White heterogeneous majority. Although we refer to the UK, France and Germany as homogeneous nations, their homogeneity is also under attack due to a growing mixture in their citizenry. A part of this comes from the colonial ventures of these countries. The influx of migrants from the Middle East into Europe is eroding homogeneity in Europe. This new trend of migration is eliciting strong negative and racist feelings among the European population, especially with reference to the religious militancy of the incoming groups, while the impoverished and destitute migrants are left in the cold by most of the executive political leaders of Europe. This is leading to immense conflict between the newcomers and the permanent inhabitants, creating strong hatred, especially against the few struggling executive political leaders fighting in some way for the human rights of migrants and their incorporation into Europe. The negative classification of these pro-migrant executive political leaders in terms of an ultra-right classification, as failed leaders because of their sympathy for the migrants is totally unacceptable in terms of the strict principles prescribed for a regime of good governance. Unfortunately, these good executive political leaders who openly under-write, propagate and promote human rights, are mostly forced out of active politics as bad executive political leaders. The migrants and their problems are ignored, and in many cases the migrants are labelled as criminals, troublemakers and terrorists. The leaders who are “tough” on migrants can be sure of a political future. One should remember that the present migrant crisis is a direct outcome of Europe and the USA’s unasked interference in the Middle East for their own interests, like oil and minerals.2,3,6,26

The problem described above is a clear reflection of the complexity of categories such as homogeneous, heterogeneous, majority and minority and the fine balance there should be. These categories of populations can either co-exist, or be pitched against each other. A country can have a homogeneous population that functions excellently, like Switzerland. On the other hand a country can consist of various minorities, lacking a dominant majority that clearly stand out as the ruling group. In such cases co-existence depends on the racial, ethnic, cultural, economic and social characteristics and interests of the inhabitants, making it a well-functioning country. When one takes a look at the old Union of South Africa, the Northern Boers (Transvaal), Southern Boers (Free State), Cape Dutch (Western Cape) and the Karoo Boers (Northern Cape) functioned well in their Afrikaner racist enclave and their political system of Black suppression. Yet the Union failed as a political entity, because the majority of the South African population, the Black South Africans, were excluded from the government and proper citizenship until 1994.2,9,33,39,49,81,82

Another example is where a country has a heterogeneous population and is governed by more than one majority. This can sometimes make the governing of a country very difficult if consensus is lacking. Belgium, ruled together by its two majorities, the French and the Flemish (both White, but differing in language and religion, as well as certain cultural habits, customs, traditions and beliefs, etc.), is an example of such a 50:50 government system and its problems. The fourth outcome is where there is a heterogeneous population, consisting of various heterogeneous minorities (various Black tribes, like Xhosas, Zulus, Venda’s, etc., each with their own different languages, certain cultural habits, customs, traditions and beliefs), but belonging to the same branch of the ethnic family tree (Black). They then form a homogeneous political majority, like the Blacks in South Africa on whose behalf the ANC is governing today.2,9,33,39,49,81,82

The various successes described above do not always reflect the true situation of the everyday reality of governmental management. It is basically impossible to obtain an overwhelming homogeneous majority population inside a country’s borders. Even Switzerland is experiencing more and more dissidence of small pockets of minorities who, notwithstanding their Swiss nationality, are culturally rooted in neighbouring countries. What keeps the Swiss people together is Switzerland’s extraordinary democracy and the direct say that every citizen has in the affairs of the country. There are no long-term successes among the countries with small homogeneous minorities that govern autocratically (like the Afrikaner groups of the Union and Republic of South Africa tried to do), basically because the autocratic homogeneous minority model ignores a homogeneous majority (in this case the Blacks) in the political system and the minority is ultimately conquered by the majority. The Afrikaners are currently in a process of dissolution because of its minority status.2,9,33,39,49,81,82

Classifications like heterogeneity/homogeneity and majorities/minorities are complex. Very few executive political leaders understand it and know how to master and manage it effectively. It seems to be the crooked executive political leaders who are willingly to engage with it, but only because it suits them. They do not really consider needs or risks in the long run. They have in mind rule and self-enrichment, and they learn to use such concepts to their benefit.2,9,33,39,49,81,82

In present-day South Africa it is important for any capable government to take note of Malloch-Brown’s5 warning that they do not understand the immense responsibility around concepts such as homogeneity, heterogeneity, majority and minority inside the global plan of governance. Every task entrusted to the executive political leader should be successfully executed for him to be a good leader and for the country to fit into the global plan of governance. The comparison of the ANC regime’s democracy in South Africa with the democracies of their BRICS partners can bring negative surprises in the next five years, as well as new challenges will have to face within the global context of governing. Malloch-Brown5:253 emphasizes that South Africa’s invidious global comparison will not go away, and neither will the demand for change: obtaining a place in the global society is a hard task to master as it always tests the actions of a regime and the state of that society. For South Africa to compete globally there should be sound governance. This is difficult to attain and maintain. Even the honourable Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma83, the previous president, had to admit in public that it was far more difficult for him to run South Africa than it was for him to fight for its freedom. The outcomes of his presidency confirm this.

Apartheid South Africa was, in terms of the use of homogeneity, heterogeneity, majority and minority as political vehicles, possibly one of the best successes ever in modern times with its creation of various homogeneous minority (racial) states, so-called independent homelands or nation-states (negatively labelled Bantustans). Each state had to accommodate one homogeneous group. The sub-group of Afrikaners who sought an independent homogeneous homeland (a revival of the Boer republics) is also such an example, but the lack of a region to occupy led to its failure and in the end also to the NP’s policy of “separate development.” The ultimate failure of the Afrikaners’ own homeland was a direct result of the Afrikaner Nationalists’ executive political leaders’ selfish and politically blind policy to allocate more than 80 per cent of South Africa to the Whites as a homeland, keeping the best areas for themselves. The short-lived policy of the Apartheid homelands mirrored the 1908 efforts to institute, in the place of the Union, a loose federation of separate South African states, based on homogeneous and minority populations (Tswana’s, Venda’s, etc.). This would surely have healed or prevented many of today’s political and racial pains that come with the majority-minority conflict. In a federation there is minimal opportunity for an immoral executive leader opportunity to play off various heterogeneous and majority groups against each other. It would also have limited the chances of such leaders penetrating the formal political system for their own interests.2,9,33,39,49,54,61,64,80-82

The ANC, when taking over government in 1994, did not focus as a political party cum liberation movement on any tribal interests and preferences, because such a policy would have directly endangered their political power base. For them there was only one way to go: a mini-empire of multi-nations. Inside this mini-empire of multi-nations the chances were plentiful to reduce some groups to powerless minorities. The independent power of tribes and minorities would have limited their ability to manipulate the various peoples of South Africa, forcing the executive leaders of the ANC (even before the 1994-dispensation) to start to dismantle the project of independent homelands (a mini-empire of multi-nation states) as fast as possible. Prominent ANC figures who actively led this dismantling from 1994 onwards included Mandela, Mbeki and Zuma. In this case the ANC’s outdated ideology of liberation drowned out the political wisdom to steer the country into the global community. Mandela, Mbeki and Zuma’s dismantling of the homelands went deeper: it represented the dismantling of minority rights in South Africa. It also confirms their inability to be good executive political leaders to serve every citizen independently, irrespective of his religion, politics, culture and colour in the post-1994 South Africa.2,9,33,39,49,54,61,64,80-82

The 1994 promise of the ANC to make South Africa a democratic state of national unity after 300 years of Apartheid did not realize. They show the same tragic short-sightedness as the Afrikaners. The grey policy of the ANC, ignoring the issue of race and numbers in politics, initially gave the ANC a free hand to abuse homogeneity, heterogeneity, majority and minority without any resistance. By falling back on majority as a point of departure they captured the formal government system to benefit corrupted leaders. This is still the case.2,9,33,39,49,54,61,64,80-82

South Africa is burdened today by not only a Black-White differentiation, but also Black tribal differentiations (well hidden from the public), which is growing (with the Zulus and Xhosas as the two majority Black tribes), as well as a growing population of Coloureds and Indians. As a state it is struggling more and more to keep its various minorities happy inside the ANC’s “homogeneous” state where the Black ANC members, as the voting majority, governs the country. So far the ANC’s executive leaders could keep the true nature of the problem of minorities away from the party, but the cracks are starting to appear.33

The histories of the USA, UK, France and Germany confirm that, even if states are overwhelmingly homogeneous, total majority vested in total homogeneity, as the ANC tried to establish in South Africa with its grey nation, is a impossibility. This is aptly formulated by Coggan40:29:

Problems certainly arise when there is a minority within a state who would like to live in their own, or another, state; or when the majority population of a state treat a minority as second-class citizens (as African Americans were treated by many of the state’s legal structure until the 1960s).

As a significant minority group the Afrikaners are diminishing in numbers as a result of their own actions; it is possible that they will disappear within a century’s time. This means that their daily pleas in the ears of ANC’s mean nothing to the party. However, there will always be remnants of this group making ongoing demands, even if there are only ten Afrikaners in a population of 100 million. Even as only a few spectators in the crowd they can be rowdy sometimes!33

The creation and maintenance of the “perfect homogeneous” state is a fable and cannot be attained. It must be admitted that meeting every individual citizens’ needs and demands is a impossibility in any regime. Plato and Socrates warned us long ago about this myth. South Africa, as a modern state, is therefore not extraordinary in failing to bring political satisfaction to every one of its citizens, but the ANC’s executive political leaders failed outright as they promised shamelessly since 1994 that they would meet the needs and demands of every Black citizen.33,40,83

To argue that South Africans are free of class, group and tribal differences, functioning perfectly as citizens in a homogeneous majority state, as was done recently by the Member of Parliament and the President of the United Democratic Movement, Bantu Holomisa45, are the empty words of just another misinformed politician45:18:

We, the people, must take back the promise of 1994. We are not Zulu or Venda, men or women. We are not Catholic or Zionist, Indian or coloured. We are not gay or straight, clever or stupid. For if we are, we are lost. We are South Africans. Period. Rise not to this reality and we are lost indeed.

Holomisa45 is wrong and his understanding of homogeneity is lacking when it comes to the intimate cultures of groups. South Africa is heterogeneous, scattered with minorities and deeply troubled by its different peoples’ various needs and demands. With the abolishment of Apartheid and the diminishing of the Afrikaners as a political danger to Black supremacy, inter-ethnic conflicts, specifically between the Black tribes, are gaining momentum. The liberation dogma of the ANC of promoting non-tribalism and non-heterogeneity, is crumbling. Minorities and homogeneous groupings are alive in New South Africa. However, the concepts of majority-minority and homogeneity-heterogeneity seem to be less open to abuse. A younger generation of Afrikaners is replacing the political fossils of the late NP with the dynamic, young executive business cum political leaders of various Afrikaner bodies, while the anti-ANC Blacks are looking to the executive political leaders of the Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Economic Freedom Front (EFF) for leadership. The perception of the goodness of the executive political leaders of the ANC that captured the imagination of the majority Blacks in 1994 has given way to a reality check.33

Louw33 writes as follows of manipulation by means of the concepts discussed above33: 279:

The Afrikaner’s drive to create a mini-empire of multi-nations (Union of South Africa with various provinces), followed by his mini-empire of multi-nation states (South African Republic with various semi-independent Black homelands under a central White homeland), all failed for various reasons, like the Afrikaner’s political and financial incompetence after 1990, an underestimation of the ANC’s political and thinking power, and a Black majority as upcoming political role players, etc.

Some of the factors above are affecting the ANC too, but the only ones not to see this is the ANC themselves.

Louw33 argues that these regimes that manipulated minorities and majorities had only the slightest idea of what they were doing and what the outcome of their political self-empowerment would. He writes33: 281:

They mostly collapsed in a short amount of time. Their shelf-life is indeed limited, as confirmed by the various Empire states of the 20th century: the duration of the Bolsheviks’ Social Union lasted from 1922 to 1991 (69 years); Bismarck’s German Reich 1871 to 1918 (47 years); Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich 1938 to 1944 (12 years); Japan’s Colonial Empire 1905 to 1945 (40 years). The People’s Republic of China was established in 1949 and is still functioning in 2017, but is only 58 years old. For these five states, the average is 45 years.

It is thus not a surprise that the NP and its nationalist Afrikaner style mini-empire of multi-nations (or the unofficial managed “NP Union”) only lasted from 1948 to 1961 (13 years), and its mini-empire for multi-states (Republic) only from 1961 to 1994 (33 years), while the Union of South Africa (exclusively British-orientated) under strong British influence lasted from 1910 to 1948 (38 years). This reflects an average of 24 years for the three regimes.

History tends to repeat itself: the main role players in these failed states are those political leaders whom Palkhivala16 describes as suffering from wooden-headedness, people driven by selfishness and self-enrichment. The above references to the World’s political histories and that of South Africa should serve as a warning to the ANC.33 Their misuse of homogeneity, heterogeneity, majority and minority by their political leaders for their own gain can start to fail them.

3.6 The odd good executive political leader versus the hostility of the media houses

There are undoubtedly executive political leaders of high quality in the South African society, Black, Coloured, Indian and White. Very few of them reach the top positions as Level 5 executive leaders or are even recognized as leaders of stature.84 They are often unseen as they are blocked out by corrupt leaders. There are also various other role players with the intention to keep good leaders from moving up in the hierarchy of the country’s leadership.

3.6.1 The odd good executive political leader

Political leaders of good, even great world status – persons highly qualified, skilled, able and blessed with extraordinary intelligence and wisdom – have in the past been selected and appointed as top executive politicians in South Africa.84 But the troubled South African political system and the people of the country’s immense ethnic, racial, social, cultural and economic dissimilarities and internal conflict kept these executive political leaders from implementing and permanently planting their good values and virtues in the country. A sound leadership foundation and a sound form of governance are crucial. It would help with the selection and training of new executive political leaders and would serve as a guideline for how to govern correctly and ethically. The time that some of the extraordinary persons spent in office – persons like JC Smuts and JBM Hertzog – were just too short to cultivate a culture of good leadership and a regime of good governance. Their positive contribution was quickly overshadowed by the Afrikaner Nationalists’ racially driven executive leaders DF Malan, JG Strydom and HF Verwoerd (persons from the same racial and cultural group as Smuts and Hertzog, but who held totally different ideas). There was little difference between the regimes of Mandela, Mbeki and Zuma (and now also Ramaphosa). There is no evidence of good executive political leaders in the ANC, making their contributions to the establishment of a culture of good leadership minimal.9,27,39,46,47,52,58,60,79,82,86

When considering the Collins-Freiberg-Ginsberg models4,84,86, the Barber-Bremer models1,2 and other guidelines by researchers3,5 on good-to-great/gutsy business enterprises, government systems and leaders, principles that are also applicable to good-to-great political parties, governments and leaders, it seems that most governments and leaders do not meet the strict requirements to be classified a Level 5 executive political leader (Collins model)84. Indeed, executive leaders of extraordinary talent and quality have been supplanted by popular larger-than-life celebrity politicians and their intimate advisers. This is also the case in South Africa. South Africa has never held its leaders to these high standards. Such standards would assure that only humble, colour-blind, emotionally stable visionaries and nation builders free from crookery and dishonesty would be selected to these important positions. The political emancipation of 1994, often driven by the self-conceit of some of the new executive political leaders of doubtful character inside the ANC, which itself was contaminated over many years by its liberation foundation, further contributed to the political failure of South Africa. The party has allowed delinquent leaders to misuse every one of the platforms that were intended to assure good reigning of the country.9,27,39,46,47,52,58,60,79,82,86

It is not even necessary to test the post-1994 leaders against the standards set by legislation to see their rottenness. One can simply look at the company they keep. Mthombothi30 wisely comments30:25:

If you want to know a man and judge his character, look no further than his company. But if he walks in the company of rogues, criminals and hooligans, that man is probably a scoundrel.

This is why it should not be difficult to find out what kind of a man President Jacob Zuma is – just look closely at who he counts among his closest friends. You will see that though our president is not known for unwavering loyalty to his friends, he certainly feels comfortable in their in their circle of corruption.

In the selecting of an executive political leader the “primary principle must be that only people who are respected, knowledgeable, capable and enlightened will lead. Rank should not be something that is imposed – it should be earned”, writes Boon.9: 104

In the selection of leaders three powers are present: the “ordinary strength or power” (in African language: amandla) with its opposite of “negative energy to destroy power” (umbango), and the “strength that comes from many people” (ibandla). With his indigenous South African approach and reflection on leadership, Boon9 very successfully reveals the presence of the odd good executive political leader versus the abundance of bad executive political leaders in the country’s politics in general and in particular in the leadership of the present-day ANC. On the modus operandi of the scoundrels when they overpower the political system and push out the odd good executive political leader, Boon9: 91 writes:

In an umhlangano [interactive forum], maximum positive criticism and creative energy is generated. In the umbango, one finds individuals who negatively criticize to achieve their own ends – perhaps even to dethrone the leader. In an umhlangano, criticism is made to strengthen the leader and one another. There is a very fine line between the two concepts. South Africa, in particular, because of recent history, tends to have difficulty differentiating between the two. In the umbango, one argues for position. In the umhlangano, one argues to build and strengthen what is being created.

One of the ways in which the umbango gains strength is to nullify positive arguments, refuse to participate and to intimidate anyone whose thrust is towards openness and togetherness. This is achieved by creating subversive dissension and fear, by isolating the leaders of the positive thrust and attempting to discredit them. An effort is made to position the leaders as the enemies of the people.

In the past, one would often hear the word impimpi. Roughly translated, this means ‘sellout’. It was and sometimes still is used to stop people from participation openly with one another, and, more particularly, with management. In this way, one shifts from an umhlangano to an umbango. Forcing the openness of all procedures and discussions works directly against the umbango. Openness works against politicking and the formation of camps. In an open environment, the umbango will die.

As part of his “African perspective” on effective and good leadership for South Africa, Boon9 brings two other perspectives to the foreground, both deeply intertwined with executive political leaderships, namely 1) our present-day Western governmental system and its applicability on future South Africa’s government; and 2) our present messy system of leadership. Here he makes us think again (and provides insight into the ANC’s confusion about effective and good executive leadership and a regime of good governance since 1994), when he says9: 64:

One of the dangers of a rapidly developing Africa is that we lose sight of balance. In pursuit of being First World, of displaying the success of our progress away from the tribe, we can easily lose ourselves in intellectualization.

We are Africans! We are not Americans or Europeans. We are Africans. And yet, in a state of sad and sometimes aggressive ignorance, many black people have lost touch with their African roots. In many instances, they are more ‘Western’ and more ‘intellectual’ than apparently Western whites. Because of this, they are even more lost, for now it is they who intellectualize everything. They are desperately clinging to intellectualism so that they can find themselves. In reality, they are taking future generations down the same road that the West has discovered is the way to lose one’s humanity. This is reflected in the great drives in search of self, humanity, emotion, community and success.

Looking critically at Boon’s9 view, the question arises: is the present South African executive leadership of the ANC not in an African grip, while they have to function in the Western system left by the NP’s reign? Is this “African” context not directly responsible for the present mess of our executive political leadership? Think here of Zuma’s behaviours in personal and public life as reflected at his home and public meetings, even in parliamentary sittings. Specific in relation to Boon’s9 above description: Can Zuma in terms of his leadership qualities and characteristics, intellectualize anything?

On a more sober and clear note, Boon9 concludes by commenting on the need to kick out political “clingfishes” like Zuma who are trying to make the presidency a heritage for a bloodline of crooks and who are intent on erasing the odd executive political leader for ever from our politics:9: 104

Mature leadership dictates that we routinely and constantly attempt to employ people who are more capable than us or who, at the very least, have the potential to be. If this does not happen, the organization will, over the years, gradually slip into mediocrity and disappear. The culture of employing less capable people is perpetuated by people we employ, who in turn employ people who are less capable than them, and so on. To reverse this takes enormous confidence.

The writers Boon9, Collins84, Freibergs85, Ginsberg4 and Mthombothi30 stress that good executive leaders promote and assure the growth and development if an organization, as well as the growth of new, bettered executive leaders to take the organization into the future. The growth of a new generation of executive leaders must thus be based on amandla. The umbango of the crooked executive leaders should be fought. 9 Boon writes9: 104:

By employing people who are ‘better’ than us, we become driven. By surrounding oneself with ever-better people and by stimulating their personal growth, one empowers the organization, giving it life, passion and fortitude. They push us, challenge us, and force us to learn, grow and lead in ever-improving ways. Should we reach a level at which we can no longer progress, and those following us can, we must accept that it is right for them to overtake us. We do, after all, think highly of them and respect them, because that is why we brought them into the organization!

These kinds of leaders are undoubtedly not on the lookout for gateways to penetrate our social and political systems for their own gain.

Can this also be said of the present-day dynamics of the ANC’s executive leadership? Undoubtedly not. Our present-day leaders have become caught in their abuse of the various platforms, entities and institutions that are meant to be noble instruments with which the executive political leader may rule.

The odd good executive political leader is an endanger species: the scoundrels, criminals, hooligans, rogues and crooks who have positioned themselves well in the present-day executive political leadership of the country, are just too powerful.

3.6.2 The hostility of the media houses

It must be remembered that satisfying the needs and demands of an entire nation, especially one as complex as that of South Africa, is difficult for any executive political leader, however extraordinary politician he might be. Often very sincere politicians are portrayed very negatively. The South African media’s various branches are central to this phenomenon. They use umbango and impimpi to disempower the odd good executive political leaders if they do not view him as meeting their requirements. Prominent role players are the press, the radio and the television. Chomsky writes as follows about this blind subjectivity of the media houses26:83: “There is nothing wrong with giving tentative support to a particular candidate as long as that person is doing what you want.” An excellent example is the constant variety of personal and leadership attacks on Donald Trump by American and world media associated with liberal thinking and media sympathetic to the Democratic Party of America. Built into this organized media hostility against Trump is the fake news and misinformation about him. What applies to Trump also applies to the political leaders of other countries, including South Africa.9,39,40,79

What is unique to South Africa is the capture of the media by the majority in their organized effort to manipulate information on political leaders. This is not only reflected in Black-versus-White politics, but is also very prominent within the ruling ANC leadership in their efforts to discredit their own good executive political leaders. They rather promote scoundrels, criminals, hooligans, rogues and crooks as executive political leadership. The recent efforts from within the ANC’s inner circles to isolate and discredit Cyril Ramaphosa by spreading false information to get him reject from the ANC’s lists of presidential candidates, is a good example. It is difficult to believe, but often these media manipulations and false information to the voters and the general public, works effectively, with serious long-term negative consequences for the good leader.29,30,86,87

Coogan40 writes the following on this negative state of affairs40:3:

The disillusionment of voters is fed by the way that politicians are portrayed in the media. Long gone is the age of deference in which journalists addressed political leaders as ‘sir’ and reported their words with reverence. When our leaders are not mocked on comedy shows, they are denounced as traitors or crooks on talk shows.

As if the press and TV are not enough, the Internet is a haven for conspiracy theorists and trolls, who can use the anonymity of the Web to spew abuse without comeback. Sometimes it seems as if it is no longer possible for reasonable people to disagree reasonably; unpopular views on the part of a politician are often automatically taken as a sign of corrupt motives or moral turpitude.

Martinez6 emphasizes that impartiality is unattainable in the media world: it is impossible to present information objectively, neutrally or impartially. Certain ideas, perspectives and facts are side-lined by the subjective agendas (and often with very bad intentions) of editors, executives in charge and the media owners (and crooked politicians who often have corrupt relationships with the media). The media and have much to gain and their actions must be aggressive and direct: “Methods now are by propaganda, consumerism, stirring up ethnic hatred, all kinds of ways.”26:83 In the middle of this muddle the good executive political leader is basically naked, depending on some loyalty and support of certain less biased media houses. Even for a very popular politician (notwithstanding always good), the process of obtaining the goodwill of the media houses for various opportunistic reasons can quickly turn wrong. The politician can be turned into a public political failure by misinformation on the radio, television and in newspapers aimed at the uninformed public.6,40

On information manipulation, Martinez writes6:177:

The power of voters is dependent on what they know. Information is the oxygen of democracy: its health depends on the quality of the ideas and facts circulating through society. If voters can be systematically misled, they can be systematically manipulated.

If a politician wants to have any hope for success in politics, the first step is to gain the favour of the mass media. Martinez6 writes that to establish a candidate’s suitability for entrance into a political career, his “political status” must be evaluated first as one of “acceptability,” after which these6:327: “…findings have to traverse the political battleground of the corporate-owned mass media before they can permeate the public consciousness”. For the good executive political leader to make it just to the corporately owned mass media’s entrance door for evaluation and consideration is basically a near impossible task. Getting a thumbs-up from them when evaluated according to their requirements for successful politics is another story.

Good executive political leaders are plentiful, depending on the group to whom they belong and thus the group who had put them in power as executives (majority, preferable homogeneously driven). Those leaders coming from the majority (empowered) are in general evaluated more positively than those from the minority (disempowered) group. Individuals and groups active outside the dominant majority or homogeneous group’s affiliation – opposition leaders who are mostly seen as representing the political, economically, racially and social losers (minorities) of the population – are mostly portrayed by subjective media houses as bad leaders whose political influences and impact must be erased. In South Africa, internal Black conflicts (the executive political leaders of one tribe against another tribe’s executive political leaders), as well as resistance from the other minorities, like the Afrikaners, can, with well-steered contaminated media influencing, cause serious ethnic and racial unrest and even revolution. This kind of planned influence can quickly overturn the present ANC regime, in the process taking down their executive political leaders. A totally new group of executive political leaders, thus far unknown in the country, can be created, notwithstanding the fact that they are not at present part of the ANC majority.4,7,17,29,33,39

It is clear that the organized media is being used extensively as a specific platform in the making as well as the unmaking of executive political leaders in South Africa, depending how successfully a leader or his group can use the media to attract the public’s attention. The outcome of discrediting the truly good political leader is prominent in this process.

3.7 Psychopathology in the behaviour of executive political leaders

Many studies postulate that cold-blooded executive political leaders, for example Adolf Hitler, reflect psychopathology, especially the psychopathic personality. These leaders do not care about the interests and lives others in the least. What they preach in public as politicians and what they plan and do in private as politicians are opposites. Africa has had its share of murderous autocrats and despots who disregarded the foundations of the democracies they took over (either by selection or force). Usually the lives of their country’s people are of zero importance.2,4,3,9,39,84

However, there is also evidence that psychopathology is not necessarily generally present in executive political leaders who make them guilty of serious offences, like terrorism, against their enemy. The study of Martinez6 confirms the lack of an overwhelming presence of psychopathology in terrorists’ mindsets.

Powell7 confirms this when he writes7: 18:

There are indeed psychopaths in the ranks of terrorist groups, but Louise Richardson says ‘terrorists, by and large, are not insane at all. Their primary shared characteristic is their normalcy, in so far as we understand them. Psychological studies of terrorism are virtually unanimous on this point’.

Powell7 quotes Richardson7:18 to support his view:

‘…terrorists are neither crazy nor amoral but rather are rationally seeking to achieve a set of objectives’. It is true to say they have their own rationality: something is driving them to take up arms and they want undoubtedly something to achieve.10

Remember, Menachem Begin, the leader of the terrorist group Irgun Zvai Leumi in Israel that was very active in the large scale murdering of Arabs in the 1930s to 1940s, was a hard-core terrorist who had learned his terrorist tactics from IRA campaign of 1919–1921 and the campaigns of the Russian anarchists. The original IRA studied the terrorist tactics of the Boers used in their guerrilla fighting (equal to terrorism) against the British between 1898 and 1902. Each one of these groups had their own reasons; often they were persons who took up arms because they had something to achieve, as did the terrorist ANC’s executive political leaders in their struggle for Black freedom or the executive leaders of the Voortrekker Boers in their terrorism against the Blacks when occupying the Transvaal and Free State regions. These various persons and groups were certainly not all crazy.7

Another argument is that all these people are atheists, an attribute that would supposedly make them cold-blooded as people. Nelson Mandela was specifically labelled an atheist. Although it is true that many of the ANC’s executive political leaders seem to be atheists (a characteristic which certainly does not make them insensitive to other people’s well-being or make them ‘bad’ persons per se), there is also overwhelming evidence that many of ANC’s executive leaders who were indeed terrorists were Christian believers. Belief in God, especially Christianity, is not a guarantee that such believing politicians will not get engage in terrorism: the Irish Christian terrorists and the Christian NP leadership’s involvement in the killing of their opponents confirms that religion per se is not a restraint. In fact, some studies confirm the presence of extreme religiousness as a specific characteristic of some terrorists.6,7,33,39

Louw33 is of the opinion that the Afrikaner problem of Apartheid is too complex to simplify it as some kind of psychopathology. Many other unrelated negative external determinants are also involved. A comprehensive study is needed to understand the racism of the Afrikaners. He emphasizes on the other hand that psychological and emotional problems can form the basis of serious social, even criminal, behaviour. Indeed, a psychopathic foundation makes the individual insensitive, exploitative and cold-blooded towards other persons, but the presence of clinically significant psychopathy is rare in the greater society. Louw33 reflects that studies on the behaviour of people from ancient times until the present show that the mass behaviour of the greater society can reflect behaviour bordering on psychopathic. He writes33:87-88:

The stories from the Old Testament of the Holy Bible describing in-depth the Jews outright and totally murdering of innocent non-Jews communities that hey conquered in their entrance into Israel from Egypt, instigated, and instructed mostly by their religious leaders in the name of the “God of the Jewry.” The Nazis leadership’s successfully mesmerizing of the Germans to commit the genocide of Jews as well as other non-Germans confirms this internalizing of doctrine further. Basic to these behaviours stand mass discrimination; In the Jewish and the German cases more ethnic orientated against people of the same race as the Afrikaners’ discrimination against people of another race. To be coerced into such mal-behaviour requires a tendency and latent disposition in the mindset of the culprits to be acceptable for these doctrines of misbehave and to commit it. To argue subjective that these culprits also as nations were permanent evil or psychologically genetically malfunctioning, is wrong, and inapplicable. Other activating and contaminating powers are also involved to activate and up-keep mal-behaviour in the mindsets of ordinary people and nations as a whole.

About the presence of on possible psychopathology in the Afrikaner mindset, Louw writes33: 80:

On the other side bad behaviour cannot originate in the individual’s mind without his own reasoning and permission, understanding, acceptance, and a willingness to participate in it. This indicates the presence of a latent cognition in his mindset, waiting and ready to be activated by external stimuli, ending in various forms of abnormal behaviour. It seems as if the Jews and Germans (and the Afrikaners in their Apartheid dogma) fell prey to this faulty cognition.

On the extent to which negative external influences can contribute to dangerous behaviour among the Afrikaners, Louw33:89 postulates:

In this regard it must be noted that the majority of ordinary nationalist Afrikaners a mandate to their leaders through the ballot box to act on their behalf and on their own discretion to drive and manage apartheid, knowing well that this included the cold-blooded murder of political opponents and dissidents. They never tried through elections to make a turn-around, and this makes them party to these crimes and brings their cognitive judgement and thus general mental health under suspicion.

Louw33 comments on the abuses by Afrikaner leaders by stating that they should have learned from the mistakes of other nations, such as the Nazis. Louw reports33: 88-89:

It is clear that a manifold of negative external influences, examples, circumstances, and environments, events over a short period or coming over centuries, can be used by cunning, manipulative leaders with flawed thinking as drivers to establish deviant doctrines and ideologies in the mindsets of large groups and to activate and internalize bad behaviour like the practice of discrimination. In the case of the Jews as well as the Germans, these external causes were seemingly manifold, causing common people to accept leaders who “lead and defend on their behalf their rights, property, cultural and religious lifestyles and nationhood”…

When he writes specifically about the Afrikaners’ behaviour during Apartheid Louw says33: 89:

In the case of the creation and practice of the Afrikaner’s Apartheid there seems, as with the Jews and the Germans, to be clear and specific historical causes that over centuries led to the internalizing of discrimination against non-Whites. The Afrikaners came to view it as correct, acceptable, and normal. This internalizing dimension does not acquit the Afrikaners as individuals or as a group from their flawed thinking in their racial discrimination…

Looking critically at possible psychopathology among the Afrikaners in their practice of Apartheid, it seems that there are strong signs of it. It is impossible to make a diagnosis on a general observation without formally testing all Afrikaners for psychiatric or psychological pathology. Looking on the severity of the practice of Apartheid’s atrocities, and the fact that the most Afrikaners ignored the signs of murder, also confirms the presence of psychopathology among the general Afrikaner people. The best conclusion that can be made under the present circumstances is that of Louw33: 89: In light of their public acceptance and formal acceptance of Apartheid at the ballot box, knowing very well the serious transgression going with it, the judgement and thus general mental health, of Afrikaners is under suspicion.

It must be accepted that the psychopathology of the Afrikaner was manipulated by the psychopathic leaders. Here psychopathology refers to the mindset of thousands of Afrikaner supporters of Apartheid and the mindsets of their executive leaders.33

4. Conclusions

The soap opera of politics and governments will never be eliminated. This is a cause for celebration – human judgement in all its fallibility will ultimately reign supreme. However much we know and however much power we wield there will always be the unexpected development to throw us of course. For those with power, hubris is always a risk. Pride comes before a fall, in government above all (Barber2:288-289).

Barber2 continues to say that the pride of executive political leaders drives a variety of negative characteristics such as self-promotion and self-service, recklessness, ruthlessness, opportunism, delinquency and crookery, cold-bloodedness, racism, lack of integrity, manipulation murderousness, flawed thinking and social malfunctioning.2,9 Boon9 describes the South African politicians excellently with his two classes: takers and mobsters. These are the true identities of most of the South African politicians, but instead of seeing this, we honour them with bronze statues; the naming of buildings, townships and airports; specific years of national remembrance; honorary doctorates, half-knighthoods and knighthoods; and even, it seems, as saints and semi-gods.2,9,33,88

This research shows they are driven by four main aims and intentions in life: self-enrichment, ownership of immense and unlimited political power, cold-blooded rule and if needed, extinguishing the lives of other humans and a life of unlimited crookery and delinquency. It interesting to look at the attempted assassination and successful assassinations of politicians in South Africa: from 2000 to 2016 more than 1 000 attempted assassinations were reported. It seems that from 1994 for certain ideological political reasons the focus shifted from killing to mafia-style violence against opponents, bring down the murder count. Although many of these attempts are purely economically and gang driven, some were political. There have been a number of successful assassinations of politicians, especially in Kwazulu-Natal. These assassinations of politicians are not a post-1994 trend, but as the TRC reflected, a phenomenon that was also part of the NP regime’s political “solutions”. This is further confirmation of the extent to which crooks had infiltrated the South African politics and their focus on remaining in power. It can be expected that political assassination up to the 2019 general election can become much more focused on prominent executive political leaders of the ANC.89-92 Remembers that many of the new leaders who were elected in 2018 are not Xhosas or Zulus. Again, take note of Tshabalala’s warning38:13: “Beware, the snake might be dead but those who share its secrets can still bite”.

Looking to our political history it seems to be the Whites, especially the Afrikaners’ executive political leaders, who were at the forefront of transgressions in South Africa. This is with specific reason that Smith writes93:18: “No man did more to create the environment in which thousands of anti-apartheid activists were detained and tortured by the security forces than Balthazar Johannes Vorster – know as BJ or John Vorster”. These unbelievable wrongdoings are not limited to Grand Apartheid (1948-1994), but stretch back over three hundred years of our history. The former PAC-leader, Motsoko Pheko94, is more than justified when he refers to role of specifically Whites (Afrikaners) in the colonization and land expropriation of South Africa (and Africa), saying94:10: “…though colonists called it the spreading of ‘Western Christian civilisation’, it was in fact, colonial terrorism”, and: “This was a crime against humanity. It was theft.” Indeed, the TRC failed to settle the “bad accounts” left by the NP-AB-DRC-alliance leaders, especially their failure to send the “accounts” to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for collecting.

But the Blacks — from the ANC to the PAC (and the PAC’s Motsoko Pheko, who is now crying “White terrorism” and “White crime against humanity”) — are equally guilty of Black terrorism and Black crimes against humanity.33,94 Here I am not referring to the ANC and PAC’s terrorism between the 1940s and 1990s (one can almost pardon this due to the oppression that the Blacks suffered and their fight to obtain equality in South Africa up to 1994), but is goes as far back as Shaka and Mzilikazi, and then of course, their post-1994 modern failed executive leaders, starting from Nelson Mandela up to Jacob Zuma.2,33 They and the Afrikaner leaders are birds of the same feather and were the main reason that debts to pay could not be sent to the ICC.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) closed it eyes to the actions of the Whites and the pre-1994 Black actions via the ANC. Instead it keeps itself busy with the atrocities of various Northern African delinquent political leaders whose political atrocities were not that much different from the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders or the political atrocities of the ANC’s leadership. At the same time it seems as if the ICC turns a blind eye to the West’s killings and atrocities, especially in the Middle East. The ICC’s view on South Africa’s pre-1994 transgressions on both sides is seemingly in line with the convenient “illegal but legitimate” view on the Serbian killings by the Western forces. The judgment of the International Independent Commission of Inquiry (IICI) reads: “It was illegal because it did not receive approval from the UN Security Council…but it was legitimate because all diplomatic avenues had been exhausted and there was no other way to stop the killings and atrocities in Kosovo.”3:122 This verdict and interpretation are stretching international law in an extreme form and is deplorable. South Africans, Black and White, got away with the same kinds of acts as their Western (White) counterparts by the ICC. South Africans have not improved since 1994, in fact, their thinking has deteriorated.

What is so surprising is that both Blacks and Whites suffered oppression and their turned around and oppressed in response. It is a good example of Herodotus’ revenge-counter-revenge theory.95 We are repeating the vicious circle of wooden-headedness. The post-1994 ANC executive political leaders, as were the White and Afrikaner executive political leaders up to 1994, are also takers and political mobsters.9,16,33,94,95

Ultimately the failed Afrikaner executive political leaders learned the hard way, and Barber2 offers a sincere warning applicable to the Blacks2: 288-289: “For those with power, hubris is always a risk. Pride comes before a fall, in government above all.” The chances are good that they will also learn that hubris is always a risk.

Many leaders have come and gone in the South Africa political history. Some left no footprint whatsoever; others were remembered for a while before they became ghosts of the past. Some became icons, also to disappear into the archives of history as numbered files. The pictures of more recent ones are still colourful and are shown around; the pictures of older ones yellowed with time, cracked and the faces indistinct. Some are still loved, at least in some way; others are despised and bitterly hated. Some called it a day and resigned freely from their posts; others were recalled; some passed away peacefully; others died violently. If we would be offered the opportunity to speak to our dead leaders in the afterlife, why would we, even if we could? In life they failed South Africa as executive political leaders; what can they now teach us besides mistakes, mistakes…and wooden-headedness? When it comes to the few living ex-leaders, we have stopped talking to them long ago; we don’t want to hear more lies and wooden-headedness from the living dead.

There is no point in denying that ethnicity and racism exist, writes Boon9:63: “It simply does, whether one likes it or not. But it needs not to be negative. It can be the most inclusive, colourful, wonderful and positive thing”. But when ethnicity and racism are being used to fan hatred of other groups, evil is being done. This evil is exactly what the Afrikaner Nationalist executive political leaders did with the “Black danger” from 1948 to 1994 to attract the votes of the common Whites. Since 1994 the ANC has started fanning ethnic and racial hatred of Whites. The ANC’s executive political leaders captured the platform “White danger” for their own gain. It seems that they learned a lot about wrongdoing from their White twin brother.

South Africa’s political dividers and disrupters must learn there is much wisdom, empowerment and blessing in the Swahili proverb: Unity is strength, division is weakness. Such a positive political concept can only come with a re-evaluation of good-versus-bad executive political leaderships and good-versus-bad regimes of governance. Trouble-making executive political leaders must learn that their time as political masters of manipulation and opportunism, takers and political mobsters are over in the South African politics.

The behaviours of South Africa’s executive political leaders are inexplicable and border on the insane. The remnants of the ideological wars between the Whites and the Blacks will be with us for a long time to come. We still see the remnants of Willem Adriaan van der Stel, Paul Kruger, DF Malan and HF Verwoerd’s actions in the thinking, planning and actions of many present-day Afrikaners. The same can be said about the negative remnants left by the executive political leaders Shaka, Mzilikazi, Nelson Mandela and Jacob Zuma. Their actions affect the thinking, planning and actions of some of the present-day Black executive political leaders ruling South Africa.4,9,27,33,54,58,60,61,63-68,95

It is no wonder that Engelbrecht23,97 after he reviewed Ronnie Kasrils’s97 book on Jacob Zuma, says23:12-13: “Kasril’s book reveals a serpent’s nest that confirms one’s suspicions that most politicians – everywhere, not just in South Africa – are cunning and dangerous snakes.” [Own translation].

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Not commissioned; Externally peer-reviewed.


The author declares that he has no competing interest.


The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa.

An appraisal of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa: 1652-2018. Part 1: Leadership characteristics in perspective

Gabriel P Louw

iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6190-8093

Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa

Corresponding Author:

Prof. Dr. GP Louw

Email: profgplouw@gmail.com

Keywords: appraisal, characteristic, constitution, executive governance, guarantee, hypocrisy, integrity, leadership, liberator, mindset, organization, regime.

Ensovoort, volume 38(2018), number 6:1

  1. Background

1.1 Introduction

The concept leader is prominent in the South African literature when reflecting on the country’s past and present executive political leaders. In this context the term executive political leaders refers specifically to governors at the Cape Refreshment Station, of the Cape Colony and the other colonies, prime ministers of the Union of South Africa and presidents of the Republic of South Africa.

Leaders are usually identified by descriptive adjectives like great, famous, traditional, strong, interactive, powerfully, true and mature. The user’s primary aim with these adjectives is to reflect and describe the quality of the person and the reign of these leaders South Africa. Some descriptions, overviews and opinions on the executive political leaders are contain classifications such as good, poor, under-par and failed leaders, depending mostly on the political and racial orientation of writers. This descriptions, overviews and opinions are also applicable on regimes.1-4

A critical analysis of South African literature reflects that these descriptions are not only very subjective, but also vague. It fails to define and to describe in depth who and what an executive political leader is and the characteristics and behaviour unique to each individual leader. This failure to offer complete descriptions is also reflected in considerations of the various regimes of South Africa, from the rule of the Dutch and British, to the South African Party (SAP) and the National Party (NP) in the period of the Union and the NP and the African National Congress (ANC) in the management of the Republic.3,5-9

This article, Part 1: Leadership characteristics in perspective, is the first in a series of five articles in this project (Project One) to evaluate and describe the performance profiles of the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa (previously the Cape Colony) for the period 1652 to 1795.

The articles that make up the rest of this series are:

  • Part 2: The entities in government and society that executive political leaders use to aid their political behaviour;
  • Part 3: Factors that influence the development of executive political leaders;
  • Part 4: A basic checklist for the appraisal of executive political leaders and regimes;
  • Part 5: Performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes for the period 1652 to 1795.

This project will be followed by a second project (Project Two) with another series of five articles on the performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa, covering the remaining period of 1796 to 2018. In this case the focus will be on the performance profiles of executive political leaders and regimes in five timeframes: 1796 to 1872 (Part 6), 1873 to 1909 (Part 7), 1910 to 1948 (Part 8), 1949 to 1994 (Part 9) and 1995 to 2018 (Part 10).

The aim of this article is to put the characteristics of executive political leaders of South Africa in perspective.

  1. Method

The research was done by means of a literature review. This method has the aim of building a viewpoint from the available evidence as the research develops. This approach is used in modern historical research where there is a lack of an established body of research, like on the topic of the quality of the current political leadership of South Africa. The sources used include articles from 2017 to 2018, books for the period 1944 to 2018 and newspapers for the period 2017 to 2018. These sources were consulted to put the characteristics of executive political leaders into perspective.10-12

The research findings are presented in narrative format.

  1. Results

3.1 Current general public opinions and views on the executive political leaders and regimes of South Africa

Political commentators give us various opinions and views on the South African executive political leaders, sometimes in a very one-sided manner from a subjective corner. This is especially true of commentators from among the Afrikaners, who feel like derelicts in the post-1994 political environment and see such writing as an opportunity to litigate. Historians try to base their views and opinions on historical facts, but in many cases the history of Apartheid contaminates the work of historians with feelings of guilt that subtract from their objectivity.

Some comments are cited below to provide a bit of perspective on South African executive political leaders and their regimes. These passages reflect how some South Africans in general, and Afrikaners specifically, see these leaders.

Elmer Bredenkamp recently wrote13:10:

Paul Kruger plunged the Boers into a war with the powerful British Empire with tragic consequences, and then fled overseas. Genl. Jan Smuts’s obsession with the British king plunged his people into further poverty. John Vorster and PW Botha started a war outside our borders in Angola, which held no danger for South Africa, and tried to solve the country’s internal problems with violence. FW de Klerk was the weakest of them all. He negotiated a good handshake for himself and plunged the Afrikaner into a no man’s land with inhumane racist legislation. Not one of these leaders had been elected democratically, but rather by a small group of self-serving, greedy souls of a political party [Own translation].

Above opinion to a certain extent seems to be subjective and right wing orientated. It criticizes Afrikaner leaders for seemingly failing in the long run to be effective, good political leaders who govern and steer South Africa and for cold-bloodedly betraying the Afrikaner cause. This view is a good representation of a so-called minority view on South African politics within the country’s heterogeneous population that is governed by a majority group13.

Other literature1,2,6-8,14,15 on South African executive political leaders and regimes, covering the period 1652 to 2018, also reflects certain deviant behaviours of the executive political leaders and their regimes, very much in line with the opinion of Bredenkamp.13

From critical literature it seems as if the Black successors of the White political leaders of South Africa after 1994 have not been doing much better than Kruger, Smuts, Vorster, Botha and De Klerk. The idea that the political leadership of Nelson Mandela and Thabo Mbeki showed infallible integrity and were free from self-conceit, self-enrichment and opportunism is a falsity. This is evident from the literature available on their respective rules. It is argued that the criminality that so undermines good executive political leadership was already awakened in 1994 by the incoming political leaders of the new regime, run by the elite of the African National Congress (ANC), long before the controversial Jacob Zuma arrived on the scene as the ultimate delinquent political leader.16,17

The South African academic and political analyst, Dr Piet Croucamp, writes18:8:

“The first cracks in the ‘morality of liberation’ were revealed under former pres. Nelson Mandela when ‘the face of all that could go wrong’, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, showed poor judgement that resulted in corruption” [Own translation].

The role of Mandela’s successor, Thabo Mbeki, in the Arm’s Deal Scandal and his selective “Alzheimer memory and ongoing amnesia” about his direct involvement in the matter is still a criminal controversy today, indicating his overall failure as an executive political leader with integrity. His immense overall shortcomings as a political leader directly led to his recall as the president of South Africa by his own party in September 2008.2,17-19,20

Croucamp18 describes the corrupt and substandard political leadership of the most recent president of South Africa, the “most honourable” Mr Zuma, who egoistically reign the country through the Zupta-gang and the ANC’s Luthuli house parliament, as follows18:8:

Many South Africans, probably most citizens of this country, regard pres. Jacob Zuma with some contempt, even hate. He is undermining, criminal and without conscience in his understanding of the democratic process. Without changing the Constitution, he changed, broke and manipulated the political rules of the game in the country until most South Africans lost their trust in the sustainability of the 1994 compromise [Own translation].

Boon1:25, in the context of good versus bad executive political leaders and regimes, written about the deviant behaviour of Black executive political leaders from 1810 to 1840. He focuses on the murderous conquest and rule of some tribes over other Black tribes, specifically Shaka, king of the Mthetwa and Zulu tribes, during the early 1800s to the middle 1800s. The land and human rights of other established and independent Black tribes were ignored by aggressive executive political Black leaders (who Boon1 calls “great,” seemingly sanctioning their histories of outright murder as good to present them in the literature as the “fathers of the Black nations”). These were all Black leaders who brought excruciating hardship and blooshed to hundreds of thousands of Blacks in South Africa. Boon1 writes about the Zulu leader Shaka’s rigid, uncompromising and selfish behaviour (very much in line with the rigid, uncompromising and selfish behaviour of Afrikaner leaders Kruger, Smuts, Botha and De Klerk towards Blacks during Apartheid as portrayed by Bredenkamp13), as follows 1:26:

Soon Shaka had decimated his northern neighbours, the Ndwandwe, and his Zulu armies were the undisputed power in a region extending from the Tugels River in the South, to the Pongola in the north, and the Buffalo in the west. His expansionist policies had a further devastating effect on the region. In the south, all the way to the Umtata River, people gradually lost everything to the Zulus – their cattle, their ability to raise crops (which were constantly taken by foraging Zulu armies), their young women and, eventually their dignity. Henry Francis Fynn, who travelled through the area at that time, wrote of emaciated and desperate people, who were dirty, terrified and, in some instances, turning to cannibalism as their means of survival. Thus began a period of migration of people who fled from Shaka and tyranny, as he raided and terrorized the tribes bordering Zululand.

Ginsberg21 elaborates further on the actions and qualities of executive political leaders and their governments at the Cape during the 17th century. He first refers to the Dutch and then to the British governors who came after 1806 with their autocratic powers. Especially prominent was the British establishment’s enforcement of autocratic imperial rules at the Cape Colony in the 1800s. He writes as follows on the impact of these foreign rules and management on the mostly Dutch-orientated inhabitants21:98:

Remember the days of Simon van der Stel, the 17th-century governor of the Cape: when the Dutch settlers grew dissatisfied with him, he was recalled to Holland. Unfortunately, the 1830s saw trekboers (Boer farmers) resorting to every conceivable means of expressing their grievances, but with no power to affect government policies they ultimately took the radical step of entering the interior of an unknown continent [Great Trek].

Linking the above with the current situation, it seems as if the new South African president, Cyril Ramaphosa, is already starting to play to the masses. The investigative political journalist Barney Mthombothi writes in short22:21:

But could it be that Ramaphosa is also struggling with a transition of his own — from obsequious underling to the headstrong honcho plotting the political demise of his former boss? How can one be a servant one day and a master the next? Or play both roles interchangeably, which Ramaphosa seems to be doing.

The above descriptions, however emotionally coloured “they may be”, are penetrating the political mindsets of many South Africans and require an answer. This discourse shows the urgent need for an appraisal and an evaluation of the quality of the South African executive political leaders and their regimes from 1652 up to today. They should be evaluated in terms of a broad set of criteria of good versus bad executive political leadership and their unique characteristics.

3.2 The effect of South Africa’s hate speech legislation on criticism aimed at incompetent executive political leaders and their practices

In politics there are no holy cows: not Gandhi, Churchill, Verwoerd or Mandela can escape critical appraisals and evaluations. Criticism is the democratic right of the individual. In practice, the contrary has occurred many times. Leaders use false propaganda and cover-ups, like the ANC’s parliamentarians did with their misinformative media statement in November 2017 when Zuma was unmasked in public for his immense constitutional and other wrongdoings, especially his disregard for parliament. Munusamy writes9:26:

The African National Congress lauds President Jacob Zuma for his continuing and undeterred commitment to account to the people of South Africa by regularly appearing before parliament to answer questions on a number of the most pressing issues facing South Africa today.” This false reflection comes after Zuma repeatedly made a mockery of parliament and the ANC caucus with his absence from parliament. When attending, he acted the fool to divert attention away from his wrongdoings.9,17

The above illustrates that during any critical unmasking of prominent political leaders and regimes, there are always efforts to subdue such critism, either by law, abuse of the media and even physical attacks. It has become difficult to evaluate executive political leaders critically, notwithstanding the fact of their corruption, fraud and theft, especially when they are still alive and acting. South Africa’s foolish but effective gagging hate speech legislation sees to this. This obstacle to criticism makes for crooked and ineffective leaders who clearly fail to reach as much a level 1 as leaders when judged according to the Collins-Freiberg-Ginsberg classification.21-24

Many succeed in escaping the unmasking of their wrongdoings. The superficial sugar coating of the post-1994 South African executive political leaders as good persons and as good leaders, is well-reflected by their biographers. They only write of excellence, affected by an icon-saint syndrome where no one dares to challenge or to critize. The fact that the hate speech legislation became intertwined with the informal post-1994 policy of political correctness and some formal pieces of security legislation effectively gags historians and political commentators. This is all to clear from the present threat of criminal and civil legal actions against the political writer Jacques Pauw17 after the appearance of his book The President’s Keepers. The book reveals just too much about Jacob Zuma and the ANC as a political party. Historians and commentators are not welcome to evaluate, appraise and describe South Africa’s executive political leaders in depth and critically.

The country’s politico-historical sources have to be tapped for information. Critical appraisals and descriptions of every South African politician, regime and leader are crucial. No former or current political leaders should ever be protected from unmasking and revelation of the truth.1,-8,16,17,25-52

At the moment it seems the leaders who came into parliament with the change to the ANC regime are above reproach. What is more, it has become fashionable to subject the pre-1994 executive political leaders, both White and Black, to ruthless scrutiny. This scrutiny has turned into a one-sided political attack on races that stand on the margins under Black rule. Misleading public statements about the Whites’ status as settlers and colonialists abound (notwithstanding the fact that the Black ethnic groups of South Africa are settlers themselves…but no whisper about this). Strong and justified responses to the attacks by these executive political leaders of the ANC (including attacks on the characters of former leaders) are often silenced by the ANC with a call on hate speech legislation and prosecution. In the meantime they offer doubtful and untrustworthy arguments and excuses to escape attacks on their wrongdoings and incompetences.2,53-68

Research cannot and must not be blocked or captured as has been the case lately when the reprehensible actions of Jacob Zuma were highlighted in the media. The South African nation needs to know the truth. Every member of the ANC elite took part in this silencing of the media when they wanted to report on the failed executive political leadership. The new president of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, was the vice-president and a senior ANC member under Zuma and a willing party to the constant cover-up and the silencing of critics of the ANC. It is time that these ANC leaders are called to book, notwithstanding their various tactics and lies to escape justice.15,17-19, 69-73

Publishing on failed executive political leaders and their regimes in South Africa is not only a right, but indeed a must. It does not matter if it is Jan van Riebeeck, the Afrikaner icons Malan and Verwoerd, the Xhosa icon Mandela or the Zulu Pimpernel Zuma (Here, simple tribal references like Xhosa, Zulu, etc., can result in legal action against critical writers). The democratic right to criticism forms the foundation of this research, covering the executive political leaders and regimes from 1652 to 2018.

Palkhivala74 is clear on the right to freedom of speech and to expression of opinions in terms of a country’s constitution. Citizens have the right to take on any executive political leader or regime that was in office previously or is in office at present. If a country proudly claims a foundation of democracy as South Africa has been doing since 1994, citizens have the right to focus on evaluations and criticism of political leaders and regimes’ contributions in general, be they positive or negative, or on every citizen’s political and civil rights and their well-being in a country (ironically the most suppressive communist states also claim to have these foundations). Palkhivala states74:296-297:

The right to dissent is at the heart of every democracy. This right becomes the duty of every knowledgeable and right-minded citizen, when government acts in a manner detrimental to civil liberties or otherwise against the public interests. The right to dissent is conferred by the Constitution: the duty to dissent is dictated by the realization that in a democracy citizens have to practice obedience to the unenforceable.

Palkhivala74 reacts to the assumed “mandate of unlimited power” of executive political leaders (and their regimes) in charge of the populations who elected them by citing the legal opinion of Justice Frankfurter, who puts it clearly that in a democracy the highest office is not that of the Number One executive (president or prime minister), but that of being a citizen. It is something for which the citizen himself always and constantly must strive and fight for74:297:

Democracy is always a beckoning goal, not a safe harbour. For freedom is an unremitting endeavour, never a final achievement.”

Only with the constant public exposure of rotten executive political leaders and their regimes can democracy be upheld and renewed. Of cause executive political leaders of good standing can be kept upright in this way as well.16,17,25,75

3.3 Lack of literature reflecting the true nature of South African executive political leaders and their political regimes

South Africa lacks in-depth literature that offers descriptions of the quality of the performances of its executive political leadership, specifically with reference to leadership as practiced by its various executive political leaders and their regimes from 1652 to 2018. Only limited references to the behavioural and political practices of the executive political leaders and their regimes are available.

The multiple biographies, articles and books on South African executive political leaders, as well as various autobiographies by these leaders themselves, offer sparse information and descriptions on the precise nature of their leadership, their contributions, or any measure of their quality. Most of research on South African leadership offers many postulations, opinions, viewpoints and “facts”, data that are mostly subjectively influenced by parties, self-conceit and intentions to promote political agendas.It often leads to the personal glorification of substandard and corrupted political leaders and their governments. Literature is used to detract from the failures of these leaders. Even with failed political leadership, some of these political leaders have become icons, even with worldwide status, with very few criticisms lodged against them to point out criminality, psychological pathology and other deviant behaviours associated with them or their regimes. Never ever do researchers dare to ask questions such as: Did leaders so and so serve every citizen of South Africa equally every day before, during and after their reign with the same love and dedication, honesty, justice, objectivity, and benefit? Were they free from racial and cultural biases and did they have the guts to take on immoral socio-political systems and delinquent political leaders without regard for the consequences this may have for their political careers? Moreover, did the many forms of resistance that leaders claim to have shown, the anti’s, keep political leaders on the right tract and their souls pure? Was this resistance really part of these leaders’ personal and political lifestyles – anti-Apartheid, anti-poverty, anti-joblessness, anti-uneducation, anti-corruption, anti-nepotism, anti-racial hate, anti-stealing, anti-lying, anti-religious domination, anti-cultural domination, anti-tribalism, anti-self-enrichment, anti-self-empowerment? 1-4,6-7,16,17,25-37

Can the top South African politicians say with pride and sincerity that Mahatma Gandhi’s goodness is part of their psyche? Not one of the many autobiographies and biographies available offers a convincing answer to the simple “anti-questions” listed above. The many wrongs done by political leaders are kept silent in many of these beautiful accounts that praise them as politicians. The truth is baked into sweet pies of lies by politicians and their autobiographers.

Hard-core facts that can unmask world figures, icons and heroes are just left out. Not even the brilliant authorized biography of Nelson Mandela (undoubtedly one of the best biographies ever to be published on a South African statesman), notwithstanding its honesty and a strong under build of objectivity, really stripped the icon naked. When there is sensitivity about the past, there is always more than the eyes can see, especially when famous politicians are involved. The hypocrisy of the British on political leaders like Begin, Kenyatta, Makarios and Mandela is a reminder of the hard reality of the crooked mindsets of politicians that has spread into the heart of democracy and respectability (and most importantly, objective research).

Daphne Caruana Galizia76, the leading Maltese investigative journalist and fearless critic of corruption who was murdered by means a car bomb in October 2017, was absolutely correct when she on the day of her death said76:23: “There are crooks everywhere you look now.

The above lack of well-grounded critical evaluations on South African executive politicians in general means that this matter should ideally be addressed in a comprehensive study and not within the limited scope of a series of articles. Nevertheless, this series of articles serves to make a start to this endeavour.

3.4 Confusing and subjective descriptions of the good executive political leader

The various declarations, definitions, opinions and views on who and what an executive political leader is and should be, are very complicated, confusing, and indeed controversial. Who or what an executive political leader is for the one writer or government depends on whose side the leader is on: the same person may be a terrorist and a murderer in the eyes of one government, but a hero and a godsend to others. There are also frequent and extreme changes in the valuation of leaders. This is accompanied by radical changes in the values of writers and governments. They change their opinions and views of certain crooked leaders, erasing overnight their memory of the chequered past of the murderer or terrorist, awarding them the status of a saint. Powell77 illustrates excellently how a person can be a terrorist one moment, hunted by many governments, and then the next moment morph into a distinguished executive political leader of world calibre, most welcome in respectable countries. Powell77:1 writes:

The British government called Menachen Begin a terrorist and tried to kill him, they described Jomo Kenyatta as a terrorist and imprisoned him, and they labeled Archbishop Makarios a terrorist and exiled him to the Seychelles – and yet later welcomed all three to London as distinguished leaders of other countries.

Nelson Mandela himself publically admitted2:9: “I was called a terrorist yesterday, but when I came out of jail, many people embraced me, including my enemies.”

The question is thus what specific leadership and personal characteristics make a person a good executive political leader. What leadership and personal characteristics fail the “official” test of goodness? The same can be asked about what kind of behaviour must be reflected to elevate a person’s poor leader status to one of good standing. Prominent in this regard is for example the extreme changes in the status and the descriptions of the political leaders Begin, Kenyatta and Makarios by the British in their reclassification of these leaders as good executive political leaders and the British establishment’s accommodating acceptance of these leaders as good persons.2,77

It must be noted that Begin was seen and honoured as a good leader and a good person by the Jews and his Irgun-group in Israel long before the British changed their opinion of him (in this context murder and terrorism are simply dismissed). The same applies to Kenyatta in Kenia with the Mau-Mau and Makarios with the Maltese Cypriots. The extreme differences in the good-versus-bad classification between various populations and nations confirms the complexity and conflicts that subjective, emotional and cognitive dispositions bring to the appraisals and classifications of political leaders as either good or bad. Of cause, many other factors are at play in the change of mindset decribed above. For instance, the direct and long-term economic, political and diplomatic interests of the UK play a role, since the new political winners in regional and world politics, like Begin, Kenyatta, and Makarios, can play an important long-term role. This can be used opportunistically by showing approval, nullifying and conveniently forgetting the cruel past.2,77

The sudden changes described above are not extraordinary. The British showed same re-evaluation and reclassification of a bad political leader as a good political leader in July 1996 with towards President Nelson Mandela of the Republic of South Africa. In this context Anthony Sampson2, Mandela’s authorized biographer, writes2:xxiii:

In the past, many of the politicians in the audience had regarded him as their enemy, who should never be permitted to lead his country. Many Conservative Members of Parliament had condemned him as a terrorist: the former Prime Minister Lady Thatcher, who is sitting near the front, had said nine years before that anyone who thought the African National Congress was ever going to form the government of South Africa was ‘living in cloud-cuckoo land’. Now cloud-cuckoo land arrived in Westminster Hall.

The above was written when Mandela was honoured in July 1996 as a visiting head of state in Westminster Hall, London, the ancient heart of the House of Parliament, in a ceremony that happens only once or twice in a lifetime. It must also be mentioned that this British mood swing with regard to Mandela already started in March 1995 with the British Queen awarding him the Order of Merit, the most coveted British honour, during her state visit to South Africa.2

Degrading British names used in the press, like St Mandela, quickly changed to Mister and President Mandela. Hypocrisy becomes a normal personal characteristic in the political mind when blurring self-enrichment and political empowerment seemingly overtakes sound thinking and argumentation on good versus bad leadership.2

Such hypocrisy is not unique to the English when it comes to classifying and reclassifying political leaders. In South Africa Nelson Mandela was, in terms of Black thinking, unjustly jailed for political reasons for a long time, receiving a prison number as name, stripped of all human dignity. The NP in turn labelled him with names such as a revolutionary, guerrilla leader, prisoner, violent terrorist and the Black Pimpernel under the executive political leaderships of his biggest political opponents, BJ Vorster, PW Botha and FW de Klerk, and their cronies Pik Botha, Kobie Coetsee and Louis le Grange. Then, suddenly, these arch-enemies officially changed and reclassified his status (and their mindsets also?). They came to call him a statesman and the President of South Africa, the chief executive political leader.2

There can also be a dramatic reclassification when a good executive political leader comes to be viewed as a bad executive political leader, as has been confirmed by the Robert Gabriel Mugabe case of Zimbabwe. This reclassification was again executed by the British, seemingly as part of their local comic: Britain rules the waves versus Britain waves the rules. Mugabe, a well-educated man holding seven degrees, including one from the University of London, initially became notorious for his political group’s atrocies against the Whites in Zimbabwe during the Smith-regime. These murderous inclinations were further extended to Whites after he took power in 1980. However, his murderous inclinations are best reflected by his Fifth Brigade’s massacre of an estimated 20 000 Zimbabweans in the 1980s, mostly from the Ndebele tribe. He ruled Zimbabwe from the 1980s as a despot, ignoring human rights and lives, including that of Zimbabweans. Notwithstanding this murderous record and thus outright failure as an executive leader in terms of world standards and surely also in the eyes of the World Court for Humanity, his indiscretions only increasingly from 1980 to 1994, the British Queen, her Excellence Elizabeth, knighted him in 1994 for his “role in the development of Zimbabwe-UK relations.”78:15 The reference “relations” already indicates British opportunistic intentions and not good leadership based purely on good personal standards and integrity on the side of the UK.78

The question here is clear: How did the British measured the initial goodness of Mugabe as an executive political leader to give him a knighthood in 1994 when his personal and political behaviour at that time had been out of line with the behavior of a good statesman for a long time already? It is only after continued murderous deeds against Whites and Blacks and many other multiple criminal wrongdoings (and an immense rise in hostility towards the British state), that the Queen stripped him of his knighthood in 2008. It took a full fourteen years after his hypocritical mark-up to good on the good-versus-bad classification (enough to meet to the requirements of knighthood), that he was downgraded on the scale to bad, where he indeed belonged from the beginning. The true meaning of hypocrisy and the blurring of sound thinking on the quality of leaders becomes evident from the fact that Mugabe was also shortlisted for the Nobel peace prize in 1981 after his election victory to become Zimbabwe’s first democratically elected president in 1980.78

When considering above negative reflection on Mugabe as a failed executive political leader (ousted as a dictator in Zimbabwe at last, but only in 2018), it is interesting to see that the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the so-called leading countries south of the Congo River and South Africa’s neighbours of good standing, harbours more and more despots and other failed executive political leaders. This includes Mugabe, Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Jacob Zuma (ousted in 2018), as well as the failing executive political leaders of Tanzania, Angola and Zambia. Notwithstanding the negative political actions of these leaders, as presidents they continue to represent independent nations as their heads. They enjoy good status as leaders internationally. Their oppression and the genocides of their own people are not strictly measured and tested on the good-versus-bad classification (or even discussed) anywhere in the Western world because it is not in the West’s interest.79

3.5 The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s reflection on poor political leadership and regimes

The 1996 hearings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC)2,45 revealed horrific stories as both perpetrators and victims of Apartheid described cold-blooded details of torture and assassinations. The two main culprits: the ANC and its executive political leaders with their own dark history of political crimes, many times against their own people; and the NP-regime’s atrocities against Blacks as well as White dissidents, argued by their executive political leaders to be committed without their “official permission” by the South African armed and security forces. Notwithstanding this laughable disclaimer, the then active political leaders of the NP, De Klerk, Pik Botha, PW Botha and Magnus Malan stood central to these cold-blooded torture and assassinations. Malan went scot-free after a botched court case, while De Klerk remained evasive and even denied involvement till the end, notwithstanding an “avalanche of evidence”, as Archbishop Tutu2:74 calls it.

Pik Botha’s acknowledgement of guilt with regard to the NP regime’s atrocities goes as far as admitting that all NP cabinet ministers “suspected these killings and torturing”, while PW Botha refused blindly to appear before the TRC to be questioned.2 However, there has been no sign of a proper appraisal and classification of the actions of the NP executive leaders as good or bad.2,45

Mandela’s own response to the prominent NP leaders’ failures as executive political leaders was that De Klerk “allowed the slaughter of innocent people because they are black”.2:474 He had no doubt that De Klerk had to be involved as the top executive political leader of the country. Still, notwithstanding the evidence, the TRC never officially condemned De Klerk and his cronies as failed executive political leaders.2,45

Mandela’s most condemning public statement on the matter of De Klerk as a failed executive political leader was undoubtedly his comment when he was asked whether De Klerk is a “political criminal.” He replied2:474: “Almost everybody in [the NP] government is a political criminal.” This pinpointed for the first time the NP’s failed executive leaderships – justified or not, true or false. Mandela classification extends to De Klerk’s intimate cronies. Mandela, now officially a statesman, one made by De Klerk himself, was forced to step in to denounce De Klerk when the TRC failed to officially admit the failures of the leadership of the Afrikaner regimes from 1910, especially the racist NP-regime from 1948 that also harboured De Klerk.2

Mandela opinion on the quality of South African political leadership cited above raises a very important question that can guide our thinking on and definition of executive political leadership: Is there any integrity left in a person when he or she becomes a successful politician? Formulated differently: Do politics contaminate the mindsets and harm the integrity of people with good and bad attributes so that they end up embracing only their bad attributes? Looking at Apartheid and the ANC’s terrorism in the Struggle years, integrity seems not to be a strong attribute among politicians, and many politicians seem to be besotted by crookery.1-8,16,17,21

On the part of the ANC2, besides their TRC confessions regarding their own bad executive political leadership during the Struggle years, Mandela himself condemned the bad executive political leaderships reflected by ANC politicians after 1994, when, the ANC became2:571: “…lenient towards corrupt Ministers, and too slow to condemn and root out bribery and abuses of power, particularly in the provincial governments, which Mandela admitted were the Achilles heel of democratic governance.” In February 1999 he publically took the leadership to task about failed executive political leadership inside the ANC (something the NP leaders under FW de Klerk failed to do, even today)2:571:

Among the new cadres in various levels of governance you find individuals who are corrupt – if not more – those they found in government. When a leader in a provincially legislature siphons off resources meant to fund service by legislators to the people: when employees of a government institution, set up to help empower those who were excluded by apartheid, defraud it for own enrichment, then we must admit that we are a sick society.

Mandela, as well as De Klerk (and of course all their intimate cronies, at all times playing the ball of hypocrisy with great eagerness), could learn a lot on clean executive politics and how to behave correctly when you are trusted and allowed into the position of an executive political leader of a country. They should in the early days of their political careers have read and studied intensively the old writings of some of the world’s politically wise men, such as those of the Indian trade unionist and politician, Sardar Patel. On the 10th of October 1949 in the Indian Constituent Assembly he said74:263-264:

Have you read history? Or, is it that you do not care for recent history after you have begun to make history? If you do that, then I tell you we have a dark future. Learn to stand upon your pledged word…Can you go behind these things? Have morals no place in the new Parliament? Is that how we are going to begin our new freedom? Do not take a lathi and say, Who is to give you a guarantee? We are a Supreme Parliament. Have you supremacy for this kind of thing? To go behind your word? If you do that, that supremacy will go down in a few days.

Patel74 here sets out a simple consideration of good and bad leadership that a person must think through before embarking on a political career. This consideration is seldom done, simply because politicians are seldom honest and pure in integrity. They hate the truth about their well-masked bad qualities as political leaders. PW Botha and FW de Klerk revealed this at the TRC and Mandela was forced to unmask their bad qualities on their behalve.2,74

What Mandela2 said in February 1999 and Patel74 in October 1949, although indirectly, is that political environments corrupt some people and the intricacies of politics do not hold respect for anyone or anything. For crook-minded politicians politics is heaven on earth, because Mandela and Patel’s pre-selection guidelines for executive political leaders are just seen as after-thoughts and not guidelines to be followed by executive leaders in their politic career choices or their groups’ in-house committees on the selection of good leaders. Any pre-appraisal or guidelines make the selection of good leaders and the rejection of bad leaders possible. This threatens the dubious leader’s future and is therefore disregarded.

  1. Discussion

The above intimate overview of the quality of South African executive political leaders and regimes from the1600s, but especially from the 1950s up to today, on the one hand confirms how bad personal characteristics and qualities have become part of the personalities and behaviour of political leaders. On the other hand it shows how such leaders carry their crooked personal characteristics and qualities into their executive leadership positions, contaminating not only their political regime, but the whole society.

Four prominent questions arise from the above discussion:

  • How can good political leaders be identified and described when there is no well-formulated definition of a good leader?
  • What criteria are there in place to select only good persons as executive political leaders?
  • Are there cultural differences between Blacks and Whites and between the various Black tribes regarding the characteristics each group feels are needed in a good executive political leader in South Africa and/or for the tribe as a leader?
  • Are these differences, if they exist, not similar to the pro-Begin Jews of Israel’s hypocritical view of good versus the anti-Begin     British’s hypocritical view of bad?

This project will try to deal with each of these questions as the research progresses.

4.1 The role of opportunism and self-interest in the good-versus-bad classification of leadership and regime

It is important to focus the attention on the immense political and personal subjectivities that can go with these four questions. It was already demonstrated how the English made a turn a round on the status of political leaders, basically for selfish and opportunistic reasons. There were also, as with the English, very clear selfish and opportunistic reasons for the NP’s turn-around on Nelson Mandela2. The NP elite knew very well in the late 1980s that the South African economy was in shatters and that maintaining Apartheid through war would bring immense loss in human live, especially for the Blacks, which the outside world would not allow to go unpunished.2,46

The common members of the Afrikaner–nationalist groups, abused for nearly five decades by their opportunistic and radical executive political leaders, also became tired of political turmoil and war. They started to reject and to denounce their role as racists and the oppressors of Black South Africans, making the collapse of Afrikaner supremacy and rule by the executive political leaders of the NP-AB-DRC-Alliance, unavoidable. The only person who could get the executive political leaders of the NP-AB-DRC-Alliance out of their growing political mess, was the Black Pimpernel Mandela, the most prominent, but unseen ANC leader. While it is true that he was acclaimed throughout the world as the great liberator, the new Moses or Mesiah, he was an unofficial South African political leader without a tangible power and lacking a convincing liberation army to overrun the NP.2,26,45-46

His leadership benefited from the fact that his prison ordeal transformed him not only into an excellent reflective and influential political leader with vision and finesse, but also into a classical Black hero. This overshadows his many other leadership shortcomings as Sampson eloquently shows in his biography2. In prison, he, the Black hero, became the only saviour and saver of the struggling Blacks in the country under the autocratic Apartheid regime. For the executive political leaders of the NP-AB-DRC-Alliance, he was indeed also the saviour of their personal, political and financial interests in the 1990s in a future South Africa: the ultimate person that must be incorporated into a kind of NP-ANC-alliance. The NP-elite had to adapt to majority rule, not out of goodwill towards the Blacks or Mandela, but to safeguard their own interests and to save their skins. They did this by changing their minds about Mandela.2,46,75

The examples of Begin, Kenyatta, Markarios and Mandela are in line with the findings of South African literature in that the classification of many of the South African executive political leaders who had failed the test as good leaders resulted solely from the personal views (framework of references) of certain journals, writers, regimes and politicians (which are been seen as subjective and false by the opposition supporting the failed leader). Supporters of such disgraced, criminal leaders (as Mandela was classified by the Afrikaner nationalist executive leaders for a long time), oppose any condemning views and opinions that attack the good status of their leaders. For the pro-Mandela supportive groups, their views and opinions on Mandela represent only the truth (which can also be subjective, as guided by their opposing framework of reference). These conflicting classifications found in South African literature with regard to good versus bad executive political leaders, are applicable to both White and Black political leaders, as well as on the various NP as well as ANC executive political leaders.2,77 (These possible kinds of outcomes will be appraised and evaluated in various articles, starting from Part 5 covering the period 1652 to 1795).

This trend in the literature basically nullifies these contradicting literatures. The consideration of South African political leaders depends on the specific time, political regime, race, voter empowerment and sentiment. The total disdain for DF Malan and HF Verwoerd on the side of Blacks in the post-1994 South Africa after they had been glorified as heroes by Afrikaner nationalists during Grand Apartheid, are excellent examples.2,77

The above outcome raises four more questions:

  • Is there really such a thing as a bad political leader or regime in politics?
  • Can an objective definition of a good executive political leader or regime ever be formulated?
  • Does the sheer complexity of a study that aims to compile and describe the good characteristics of a good executive political leader and  his good regime make such a project impossible?
  • More specifically, is it scientifically possible to offer a trustworthy appraisal and evaluation of the executive political leaders and regimes of a country in terms of a “good-versus-bad” classification?

The above questions are tested in articles starting from Part 5.

4.2 Confusing decisions on the moral standing of executive political leaders and regimes

Some political scientists, politicians and lawmakers (usually established in political power and not open to the competition of strong opponents in an unstable environment) propose that persons with criminal backgrounds (like terrorist and freedom-fighting activities), should not be allowed into political positions in any way. This changes an inclusive entrance to politics and possible executive political leadership to an exclusive, strict political entrance, totally cutting out ‘criminals’ from politics in the hopes of ensuring a better class of candidates for politics. The trend of political leaders committing criminal acts (notwithstanding their “clean” record before entering politics) once in public office, defies this requirement of “no criminal record.” Some of the “crime-clean” NP politicians when measured according to this criterion became criminally driven politicians once in office, as their Apartheid atrocities confirm, while many of the “terrorist” ANC politicians, involved in serious atrocities during the struggle and thus “criminals” from the beginning of the ANC regime in 1994, did not get involved in crime while in parliament. It must be emphasized that the lack of distinction between right and wrong by high level politicians and governmental executives in decision-making and behaviour is not limited to the NP and ANC leaders, but a worldwide phenomenon, whether these officials were elected or not.2,80-86

The confusing opinions of regimes and world leaders on whether a person or political leader is good or bad is not only illustrated by the examples of Begin, Kenyatta, Markarios and Mandela, but also by American president George Bush’s lack to distinguish between good and bad realities, and ultimately between good and bad politics.87 In this case the decision-making bordered on dangerous hallucinations and delusions. Bush was blinded by quasi-political-religious infections. It is reported that Bush proclaimed87:108: “God told him to strike at al Qaida,” which he then did, and then “again that God instructed him to strike at Saddam,” which he again did. It is also reported that he said he87:108: “received the command of the Lord of Hosts, the War God, to fight the problems of the Middle East.” Besides the fact that financial, political and military opportunism can drive the leaders of regimes to appraise and to evaluate a foreign executive political leader subjectively and faultily, is it clear that the subjective (faulty) religious foundations of empowered political leaders can also blur their views on any other executive political leader (driving them to act against them in cold blood, as happened with Saddam Hussein). Such religious evaluations can be untrustworthy and can activate dangerous politics. This is confirmed by various other researches.77,87 Powell77 warns in this context that religiously inspired persons are less susceptible to rational thinking. He quotes a former Israeli minister, Dan Meridor, as saying77: 346: “When you get God into discussions, God never compromises.”

When the top executive political leaders, like those of the USA, classify the executive political leaders of countries in conflict with the USA in terms of an exclusive religious evaluation, the classification undoubtedly becomes superficial, false and dangerous. Remember above saying: “God never compromises [for others’ politics and rights]”. Indeed, the devil can be “present and very active” within the mindset of the eager and judgemental executive political leader himself.77,87

It seems as if politics make the corrupt more corrupt and the virtuous less virtuous. Although this statement can be seen as a sweeping statement, there seems to be some truth in it when looking critically at the histories of South African executive politicians and regimes from 1652 to 2018. What is very clear is that these negative outcomes bedevil the formulation of an acceptable definition of good executive political leaders. It also gives some insight into why there has so far not been a comprehensive evaluation or appraisal in South Africa on the political leaders for the period 1652 to 2018. It seems just too complex and too impenetrable to undertake.2,80-86

4.3 The effect of democracy on our idea of good executive political leaders and regimes

Regarding the issue of good political leadership, it is clear from South African and international literature, that political leaders who fail to deliver on their promises or leaders who deviate from democratic politics in their management of countries, attract much attention (but voters fail to force them to rectify their failures). Political leaders and regimes try to make real improvements, often succeeding in bettering the lives of their voters, seldom receive praise.86

Barber86 emphasizes that the process of delivery – and thus the practice of good leadership at all time – is important to politics since a politician’s future is threatened if he fails repeatedly to deliver on promises. Matthew d’ Ancona argues that86:xiii:

…successful political leadership is becoming increasingly challenging as leaders face ‘higher expectations of government, raised standards of accountability and media scrutiny more intense and unrelenting than at any time in history’.

Political leaders of both talent and genuine goodwill, of which there are many more around the world than public commentary would have you believe, find themselves struggling to deliver their promises.

Clearly good executive political leaders have to adhere to ever-rising standards. Good leaders still fail to fulfil their tasks in the public’s eyes as good executive political leaders (whatever fails means in this context).

4.4 Accountability, responsibility and ethics as unique characteristics of good executive political leaders and regimes

Some researchers have tried to take the good-versus-bad classification further, at least in some way, by identifying certain characteristics unique to good leaders. Many researchers 2,17,80-87 highlight the failure by executive political leaders to act accountably and responsibly and with regard to ethics principles. These failures are mostly direct outcomes of crooked doings or the result of shortcomings in the abilities and skills of political leaders.2,17,80-87

Chomsky writes87:14:

Chomsky knows full well the limits of leaders and their advisors, the arrogance, posturing, and malign intentions he finds in their words. It does not matter whether these leaders are elected or appointed, or hold their office through blood or advantage of wealth or even as the result of some level of educational attainment useful to a ruling elite. He is aware that oligarchs do not rule as trustees for others, but for themselves. They have in mind the destruction of democracy if it ever proves to be more than a rhetorical fig leaf, when it means the redistribution of economics and political power along the ideological lines of Adam Smith and Tom Paine, or when it means the renunciation of imperialism. There is a direct line between the antidemocratic elites and the establishment of secret organizations such as the CIA, which know and do things that a democracy would not begin to understand or countenance – until democracy is deadened through propaganda.

Regarding the reference of Chomsky87 to the negative impact of secret organizations on politics and the upkeep of democracies worldwide, the politics of South Africa was and is not free from secret organizations and their hidden bedevilling activities on the country’s political functioning. The wrongdoings of the secret Afrikaner Broederbond (AB), a crooked and intimate associate of the NP during Apartheid, is well known. ANC is comparable with a faction of its elites (specifically the exiles and the veterans who maintain their liberation dogmas, doctrine and ideology) belonging to the secret MK organization, still going strong today as a destructive liberation organization in the South African politics. It is not very different from the AB, which promoted undemocratic political acts during the heydays of Apartheid. And, of course, there is also the ghost of the PAC’s PQCQ.16,17,25,26,75,82

Chomsky87 states that the politics of many countries were in the past and are at present still driven by “old Wild West politics”, justice and business, its cowboys and crooks, its crooked town councils and crooked sheriffs, all working together to run and to oversee the whole crooked business. Corruption, theft, mismanagement, injustice and killing as correct values, customs and traditions, have successfully replaced the concepts decency and of law and order in the intimate executive political leadership’s functioning. There is not a single rule of integrity in this kind of politics – most politicians are driven by their own interests, with the interests of the voters only a vague idea and memory. In this political environment it does not matter who the sheriff is, as long as he has a silver star pinned to his chest. Who pinned it on for him, is also of little importance.16,17,87,88

South Africa’s own politics did not escape this Wild West, its crooked town councils and its crooked sheriffs with their silver badges. Our political history tells us this story over and over – of crooked regimes, crooked governors, crooked prime ministers and crooked presidents — and still we vote into power these crooked sheriffs and crooked town councils. In this context the question becomes prominent: Can South Africa’s various governments, governors, prime ministers and presidents with the many allegations brought against them be seen in general as good executive political leaders and good regimes of governance? This is one of the questions that this research project of nine articles will try to answer.16,17,88

In South Africa, poor executive political leaders and poor regimes of governance have a long history, going back to the honourable Jan van Riebeeck in 1652. It gained momentum from 1948 with the Apartheid regime of the NP. The post-1994 period shows a further rise in the lack of accountabilility and responsibility by the executive political leaders, a phenomenon that Chomsky87 warns us is plentiful worldwide and which Mandela2 also pinpointed in the ANC leadership since 1994. The following warning is clear85:20:

Accountability is a cornerstone of our constitution, which is replete with mechanisms to ensure that public officials, both elected and employed in the public service and in state entities deliver on what they are paid to do. The ease with which public officials pass through the wringer, to emerge apparently unscratched at the other end, is unsettling.

4.5 The failure of the Constitution to enforce good executive leadership principles

The failure of the Constitution80-83,85 to set down measures for the strict implementation of its rules for good executive leadership is a direct result of the fact that the South African Constitution is only designed for a honest statesman as the executive political leader at the helm: a person immune to corruption, nepotism, fraud inside his own government and the public service and to onslaughts from outside by the private sector. The mass executive juridical and political power vested in the president leaves him free to abuse it if he lacks accountability, integrity, ethics and basic honesty, all of which are essential for a good executive political leader and the upkeep of a good regime of governance. Crooked invaders from the public service and the private sector can quickly create political and economical havoc and a constitutional crisis if the President is a failed executive political leader and a crook himself. Africa has become known for such bad executive political leaders. It was not without the deepest concern about the calibre of executive political leader in charge of South Africa that the EFF MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi referred to Zuma as the “constitutional delinquent.” He endangered the Constitution, and this concern is still valid with application to Ramaphosa. There are many other constitutional delinquents in the ANC planning to become the executive political leaders of South Africa in the future.1,2,16,17,21,89

The current envisaged change to the Constitution to allow land-grabbing as part of the ANC’s policy of radical economical transformation (RET) and radical social transformation (RST), offer these constitutional delinquents of the ANC the opportunity to encircle and to close down Western democracy, accountability, responsibility, integrity, ethics and honesty, all essentials for a good executive political leader who oversees a regime of good governance. But, to be honest, this constitutional delinquency such as that in the ANC’s inner circle is not new in South African politics. It is exactly what DF Malan and his constitutional delinquents did in 1948 within Western democracy to the Constitution of the then Union of South Africa. The Grand Apartheid of the Afrikaner nationalists took constitutional delinquency to its utmost limits.89,90

Mthombothi83 writes about the above dangerous flaw in the South African Constitution, giving executive political leaders some scope to act with bad intentions and to promote their own interests83:21:

Some of the Chapter 9 institutions have proved useless in curbing the powers of the executive. We need to craft a system that makes power directly accountable to the people. Structures that are themselves removed or distant from the masses cannot be expected to ameliorate overweening power.

Ranjeni Munusamy9, a South African political-investigative journalist, writes about the concourse of a crooked President who is fully and solely in charge of the Constitution, with the failed Chapter 9 Institutions, also under his strong hand9:26:

…Zuma repeatedly made a mockery of parliament and the ANC caucus, most notably in the Nklanda saga.

Zuma has become accustomed to fobbing off serious allegations against him as if he is a private citizen and nobody is entitled to know his business.

He has also mastered how to cheat accountability mechanisms.

As a result, he has managed to escape culpability for bending the rule of law, violating the constitution, instructing state officials to give contracts to his friends, making cabinet appointments on instruction from his benefactors, receiving payments from business people and gangsters, and paralyzing the security agencies to prevent prosecution.

… the president also owes millions to the South African Revenue Service, which he has no intention of paying thanks to one of his keepers…

4.6 The contaminating effect of the public-private sector intertwining on the quality of executive political leaders and regimes

To understand the contaminated effects of bad accountability, bad responsibility and bad ethics active in the present South African leadership environment, it must be noted that the South Africa private sector and public sector had become totally intertwined over time. To divorce the South African private services from the public sector when it comes to political management and business systems is impossible: What is happening in the one can not be separated from the other’s practices of corruption, poor governance and accountability. Our immense state capture is an outcome of this public-private sector’s “bastard birth” in 1994. This entanglement, which is leading to poor outcomes on many terrains of society, also spread deep into the two sectors’ executive leaderships.69,91-94

It is clear that South Africa is in trouble, and indeed in very deep trouble, due to its lack of good executive leaders and good governance. Corrupted accountability, ethics, responsibility and governance seem to sprout from a well-placed cocoon of political and business crooks; active simultaneously in the private and public sectors, functioning as a well-intertwined web of deceit.69,91-94

It must be noted that there are still many executive political and business leaders of good standing. Magda Wierzycka, CEO of the Sygnia Group, is of the opinion that, proportionally, only a small group of bad executive business and bad executive political leaders have captured and contaminated South Africa. She put this group on 20 000 well-positioned corrupted transgressors against a population of 56 million South Africans outside this culture.95

4.7 The executive political leader as the central guiding figure in good governance

The concept leader (in this study more specifically the executive political leader, meaning the top executives of the country) is central to this study. As previously said, many references are found in the literature to the words leaders and leadership, but most definitions provide no guidance. For this study is it important to give a short overview on the important role of good leaders and good leadership in the political and business sectors, and why the researcher sees a politico-historical appraisal or evaluation of the contributions of South Africa’s executive political leaders as a necessity.

One of the best studies that shows the importance of good executive leaders and leadership in extraordinary successfully American enterprises, is that of Jim Collins,23 titled Good to Great. Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t, which was published in 2001.

The Collins-study23 focused on 1 435 American companies, classified as “good” companies in 1985. Collins and his team observed these companies from 1996 to 2000 with reference to a schedule of 15 years of performance (1985-2000). When considering these fifteen years only, only eleven companies (0.7%) could be classified as great. The crucial question for Collins23 was: What did the eleven good-to-great companies share in common that distinguished them from the other 1 424 comparatively good companies. Certain findings emerged; one outstanding was the presence of extraordinary executive leaders in these eleven companies, who he named Level 5: Executive Leaders or good-to-great leaders. This kind of leader was absent from the other 1 424 companies, notwithstanding their status as good and their business successes.23

Some of the characteristics unique to this Level 5 leader are the following: they built enduring greatness through a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will; they are fanatically driven, infected with an incurable need to produce results; they make productive contributions through talent, knowledge, skills, and good work habits; they contribute individual capabilities to the achievement of the group’s objectives and work effectively with others in a group setting; they organize people and resources towards the effective and efficient pursuit of pre-determined objectives; they catalyze commitment to and vigorous pursuit of a clear and compelling vision; and they stimulate higher performance standards.23

What is of direct importance to this research project is the fact that the intent with Collins’23 study was initially not on the quality (good or great) of leaders per se, but solely on the business profiles and functioning of the eleven good-to-great businesses itself that set them apart from among 1 435 companies. The prominence and importance of executive business leaders emerged only as it became clear that they were the main drivers to turn the eleven good enterprises to great enterprises in a period of 15 years and to uphold this good-to-great status. What Collins23 also identified, was that his findings were not limited to the private business sector, but applicable to every sector of the society, including the various segments of the public sector.

Read about Collins’23 initially negative attitude about the role of executive leaders in the success of business enterprises and organizations as compared to his Rubicon-acceptance of good executive leadership based on sound empirical findings, as an absolute necessity in good management. It does not matter if it is in business or politics. His full text, describing his Rubicon, is quoted to give an in-depth understanding of the aims and intentions with this series of articles and the need for this study on executive political leaders. The title of the study: Leadership characteristics in perspective, says it all. Collins writes23:21-22:

We were not looking for Level 5 leadership or anything like it. In fact, I gave the research team explicit instructions to downplay the role of top executives so that we could avoid the simplistic “credit the leader” or “blame the leader” thinking common today.

To use an analogy, the “Leadership is the answer to everything” perspective is the modern equivalent of the “God is the answer to everything” perspective that held back our scientific understanding of the physical world in the Dark Ages. In the 1500s, people ascribed all events they didn’t understand to God. Why did the crops fail? God did it. Why did we have an earthquake? God did it. What holds the planets in place? God. But with the Enlightenment, we began the search for more scientific understanding – physics, chemistry, biology, and so forth. Not that we became atheists, but we gained deeper understanding about how the universe ticks.

Similarly, every time we attribute everything to “Leadership”, we’re no different from the people in the 1500s. We’re simply admitting our ignorance. Not that we should become leadership atheists (leadership does matter), but every time we throw our hands up in frustration – reverting back to “Well, the answer must be Leadership!”—we prevent ourselves from gaining deeper, more scientific understanding about what makes great companies tick.

So, early in the project, I kept insisting, “Ignore the executives”. But the research team kept pushing back, “No! There is something consistently unusual about them. We can’t ignore them”. And I’d respond, “But the comparison companies also had leaders, even some great leaders. So, what’s different?” Back and forth the debate raged.

Finally – as should always be the case – the data won.

The good-to-great executives were all cut from the same cloth. It didn’t matter whether the company was consumer or industrial, in crisis or steady state, offered services or products. It didn’t matter when the transition took place or how big the company. All the good-to-great companies had Level 5 leadership at the time of the transition. Furthermore, the absence of Level 5 leadership showed up as a consistent pattern in the comparison companies. Given that Level 5 leadership cuts against the grain of conventional wisdom, especially the belief that we need larger-than-life saviors with big personalities to transform companies, it is important to note that Level 5 is an empirical finding, not an ideological one.

The good executive leader is a fact, a reality, a must for a society that wants to be successful. He is the modern-day Messiah of a company, a institute, a regime, a country – he can get it through troubled times and steer it to Utopias, because he has integrity, accountability, responsibility, personal ethics, vision, sound thinking, balanced emotions, honesty and is against self-enrichment and self-promotion. For him the group and its interests come first. South Africa’s good executive political leader and regime must have the same qualities as those reflected by the Collins research23, if not at a higher level. They must be able to steer the country and its people towards success.

How do South Africa’s executive political leaders and regimes fit into this picture? This question is explored in article 5 (Part 5) of this project for the period 1652 to 1795 (The inention is to explore on a later date also the period 1796 to 2018 in Project Two).

  1. Conclusion

Anthony Ginsberg21 in his book South Africa’s Future emphasizes that South African voters must at all times judge the performance of their elected politicians and executive political leaders and hold them highly accountable if they fail their tasks and duties. Ginsberg writes21:20:

Members of our present and future governments should not be treated as untouchables, no matter how courageous their leaders may have been or how many years they may have struggled to achieve leadership positions. By voting them into power we have sufficiently rewarded them for their years of struggle and sacrifice. The longer we wait to demand results and answers to the harsh realities our country faces, the deeper the hole will become which we have dug ourselves into.

It is our role as the electorate to ask tough questions and to demand answers of the people we put in power. They are our servant, not the other way around.

We are the shareholders of government – the current management team is only temporary, and can be replaced by a new team with new ideas every five years if need be.

Boon1 and Ginsberg’s21 statements, together with five other studies, form the appraisal base of this series of five articles of project one. The project is focused on positioning the executive political leaders of South Africa and their regimes for the period 1652 to 1795 on a continuum of good and bad. The intention of this series is much broader and more in-depth than the intentions of Boon1 and Ginsberg,21 who put only the current South African executive political leaders in perspective. The primary aim of Project One (with the focus on the period 1652 to 1795) is to create a basis for a second project that will evaluate and describe the performances of South African executive leaders from 1795 to 2018, with President Cyril Ramaphosa being the focus end-point in a classification of good performances versus bad performances. The two projects explore how accountable, responsible and ethical executive political leaders were in the past or are at present. The intention is to offer a descriptive overview and conclusion on the contributions of executive political leaders and regimes to the well-being of every South African and South Africa’s politics overall. The outcome of this overview and the conclusions must be seen as an effort to know our past so that we can understand our present and can appraise our future. In line with the guidelines of Boon1 and Ginsberg,21 the overall appraisals of political wrongdoings and praise for executive political leaders and their regimes of governance where they did well, are organized according to six timeframes (Parts 5 to 10) in the period 1652 to 2018.

This first project (Project One: including Parts 1 to 5) offers an appraisal of the leaders and regimes of the period 1652 to 1795 (with the evaluation of the profiles of the leaders and regimes in Part 5).

What we need is a dramatic change in the thinking on South Africa’s political problems, especially those that have became entrenched in most South Africans. South Africa can take an important lesson from Jonathan Powell77, a well-known international mediator between governments and terrorist organizations, when he reflects:77:366-367:

…there is no such thing as an insoluble conflict, however bloody, difficult or ancient.

Believing that a solution is inevitable is nearly as dangerous as believing a conflict is insoluble. If people sit around waiting for a conflict to be ‘ripe’, or for the forces of history to solve it for them, then it won’t be resolved.

What we need are more political leaders prepared to take the necessary risks…

The solution to South Africa’s political problems is no more complex than the solutions to the problems Powell77 addressed. In as sense our executive political leaders are part of the insoluble conflicts themselves; they are the instigators and zealots of the ongoing racial, social, economical and political conflicts. The leadership must change before any other changes can occur. The question is who will bring about the change, their former partners in crime? Thankfully history shows that there are always insiders in a defective system who are willing to change and who would work to change their partners and their organization to steer them away from wrongdoing. It is a difficult task, but often very successfully. Powell’s77 positive opinion that even the most serious political problem can be solved, gives us hope that the problem of South Africa’s ineffective executive political leaders can also be solved. However, as Powell77 warns, we can not sit around waiting for it to solve itself. It is ancient, but not bloody at the moment.2,16,17,21,25,74,77 This study can make a positive contribution in this regard.

The South African politico-historical literature has thus far failed to ask the following basic questions about the country’s various executive political leaders:

  • Did the said executive political leader serve every South African citizen’s interests every day before, during and after their political reign with love and dedication, honesty, justice, objectivity, and free from racism and cultural bias?
  • Did the particular leader have the guts to take on the country’s socio-political system, not fearing the consequences this would have for their political careers?

A further question that arises from the above questions is:

  • Did the executive political leaders under discussion pertinently distance themselves from any racial, ethnic and cultural discrimination, domination and siding, and did they belong to groups that reflected any ethnic, racist and violent political behaviour, be it justified or unjustified?

In South Africa the same leader would be hailed a hero in some politico-historical sources and a villain in others. This has become a point of controversy. These conflicting and controversial views and opinions do not serve the South African history and its political culture well. These views do not help to steer the development, the establishment and the upkeep of a culture of good executive political leadership and good governance.

It is time that the above daring questions be answered, however simple they seem. We cannot shy away from it anymore: He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever (Chinese Proverb).

Hopefully, articles two to five (Parts 2 to 5) will shed some light on the above questions. The research will perhaps also help politico-historical researchers let go of their fear of looking like fools for asking the right questions.


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  54. Cronjé F. Mandela-boek verbied; dit laat ANC sleg lyk. Rapport (Weekliks). 2017 Aug. 27; p. 6.
  55. Henning RW. Dit blyk nou dat Afrikaners tydens die onderhandelingsproses oor die nuwe Grondwet mislei is, sê oudpres FW de Klerk. Rapport (Weekliks). 2018 Jan. 21; p. 7.
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  58. Kriel K. ‘Afrikaners is moeg vir skurk-etiket. Rapport (Weekliks). 2017 Dept. 17; p. 3.
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  60. Kriel K. Treat violent incidents between races equally. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2017 Aug. 27; p. 24.
  61. Lucas Mangope, a self-serving apartheid apologist and depot. Sunday Times (Orbitueries). 2018 Jan. 21; p. 19.
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  63. Omar M. Indians don’t need BEE handouts to get ahead. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2017 Oct. 22; p. 20.
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  82. Mthombothi B. Our double dose of despair: courtesy of Zuma and his cabinet of incompetents. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2017 Oct. 29; p. 25.
  83. Mthombothi B. A constitution designed for a Mandela buckles when someone like Zuma is at the helm. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2017 Oct. 22; p. 21.
  84. Myburgh J. Hiér word korrupsie vervolg. Rapport (Weekliks). 2018 Feb. 22; p.11.
  85. Only firm action will force accountability on our arrogant public officials. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2018 Jan. 28; p. 20.
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  89. Mnguni L. Party puts itself above country in a way it is handling the ‘transition’. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2018 Feb. 11; p. 21.
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  91. Barron C. Shots across the bow, across the board. Sunday Times (Business). 2017 Aug. 27; p. 9.
  92. Hasenfuss M. Bekker closes pay talk: ‘I’ve ruled. The end’. Sunday Times (Business). 2017 Aug. 27; p. 4.
  93. Tshandu PV. Wiese quashes ‘rumour-mongers’. Sunday Times (Business). 2017 Aug. 27; p. 1.
  94. Steinhoff debacle shows corporate governance is in a parlous and risky state. Sunday Times (Opinion). 2017 Dec. 10; p. 20.
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Not commissioned; Externally peer-reviewed.


The author declares that he has no competing interest.


The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa.

Is the dissolution of the Afrikaner tribe a century away? Part 6: The preparedness of Afrikaners to deal with the threats and challenges of the new South Africa

Gabriel Louw


Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Arts,

Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa




Corresponding Author:

Prof Dr GP Louw

Focus Area Social Transformation

Faculty of Arts

Potchefstroom Campus

North-West University

South Africa

Email: profgplouw@gmail.com


Ensovoort volume 37(2017), number 11:2





Alliance, apartheid, Black danger, civilisation, conflict, destiny, destitute, discrimination, dissolution, doctrine, intention, miscegenation, network, opportunistic, preparedness, racism, regime, Uhuru






Then, in 1974, at the stroke of a pen, the Portuguese relinquish control of the colonies of Angola and Mozambique. For years, the Portuguese army, the one into which you were conscripted as a young man, had been fighting Frelimo in the bush. In just a few days, Frelimo is going to take over the government! Images of Mau Mau in Kenya, the slaughter of civilians, even nuns in the Congo, let alone what you saw as a soldier, rush to mind. You look at your wife and two daughters, and your beautiful home, and know what you have to do: get out. You have no foreign currency, no passports, and it is too late to try and get them. So you pack all the valuables you can into your car. You squeeze in granny and the rest of the family and, along with what looks the entire white Portuguese population of Mozambique, make your way to the South African border at Komatipoort. Overnight, you are a refugee.


Where do you all go? Bez Valley (Johannesburg, RSA)! And why to Bez Valley? Because suddenly you need the tribe. You need the extended Portuguese family to survive. For here, in this strange country, your Portuguese escudos (Mozambique pre-independence currency) mean nothing; you are unable to even speak the language. It doesn’t matter that in Lourenço Marques you were landowner and a successful businessman. Here you have nothing. In order to survive, first the extended family and then the tribe draws together. Your uncle speaks a little English and helps you find a job. In crises you group together and find ways of helping each other because you all experience the same treat. Ethnicity is high.


With time, the community is educated in the local culture. You learn to speak English and you progress quickly in business terms. Over the years, you once again become a well-to-do, successful businessman. Your children are at good local schools, but when they finish high school you decide to move. You no longer live in Bez Valley, although you still have friends there. Now you live in Sandton, Randburg or Mondeor”(Boon1, p. 62).


With above description Boon1, p.62 sensitively, but thoroughly profiles what can happen when established political systems suddenly collapse and disintegrate. The Portuguese who had become indigenous to Mozambique, were not only left destitute, but also became permanently detached from their trusted leadership and the motherland they served loyally and unquestioningly for many years. This was primarily the direct outcome of political entities that not only suddenly lost all power, but consequently also failed to offer their previously core group of supporters and followers any protection or support whatsoever. This political group were in a certain sense cold-blooded in that they did not take the trouble to negotiate any kind of guarantee with Frelimo for the safety of Portuguese citizens. All the traditional guarantees, written or unwritten, said or unsaid, that had safeguarded the Mozambican Portuguese’s unique lifestyle and their personal safety fell away. Suddenly these Mozambican Portuguese were alone and they were forced to make dramatic life-changes, totally foreign to them. The Portuguese master they served with loyalty and even their lives for many years, became more concern with the interests of Frelimo than their interests.


1.1 The De Klerk pen-stroke


History repeats itself, especially in terms of what happens to groups of people. In South Africa, Uhuru also lifted its head to slowly demolish the nationalist Afrikaners’ empire. In 1994, also with the stroke of a pen, the Afrikaners relinquished control of South Africa. Rather, the De Klerk regime did it on their behalf. He was mandated by a half-baked referendum. The country as a whole went to the African National Congress (ANC), which the Afrikaners fought for years in the bush, on the borders and in the country. For years the NP-AB leadership impressed on people that this group is an enemy, murderers, communists, terrorists and unacceptable citizens. Suddenly they received the blessing of the same NP-AB leaders to become the masters of the Afrikaners, precisely as Frelimo became the masters of the Portuguese in Mozambique with the blessing of the Portuguese authorities twenty years earlier.1,2


The following comparison between the Afrikaners and the Mozambican Portuguese serves to facilitate an understanding of the position of the Afrikaners since 1994 and their reaction to the threat that is the ANC government.


Both of these groups descend from European groups and over time had become indigenous African groups. Both groups had lost contact with their motherlands, but were at all times seen and treated as superiors (based on White supremacy) by the local indigenous people. Both were supported by oppressive security forces that protected their personal safety and their rule over the Blacks populations. Both had access to wealth, opportunities and favours not always available to Blacks. The Portuguese had an established extended family network outside Mozambique (supported further by unrelated Portuguese in South Africa based on ethnicity). The Mozambican Portuguese’s Roman Catholic religious groups were far more communally oriented in offering support to its members than the selfish capitalistic Protestant religious groups of the Afrikaners that were the bedrock of the NP-AB political alliance. Both groups practiced racial discrimination: the Afrikaners in an extreme form (varying from planned brutal suppression, impoverishment and manipulating of Blacks up to the Immorality Act), while the Portuguese engaged in a form of racial miscegenation. The Portuguese not only lost their Mozambican citizen’s rights, but all their material belongings immediately after Uhuru. They had to restart and rehabilitate their personal, social and economic lives. Their lives became endangered on the very first day of entering Mozambican independence. The Portuguese were suddenly refugees, forced to find a new homeland. They had to learn a new language and accept a new culture. The Mozambican Uhuru at once cut off the Portuguese from their Mozambican hinterland.1


The Afrikaners were not forced out of South Africa after 1994. Nor were they forced to accept a new culture. They did not lose their South African citizenship or their material possessions. Their lives were not endangered. But still, the South African Uhuru brought immense changes for the Afrikaners and these changes are still intensifying in 2017. Although the real consequences of Black rule for the Afrikaners only emerged five years and longer after 1994, it seems to be in some ways more negative than in the Mozambique of 1974. It is starting to endanger the lives and material possessions of the Afrikaners. Afrikaners have not had extended family systems in other countries since before the Second Anglo Boer War, nor have they had the sympathy of other countries. It was effectively replaced by a NP-AB Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) network that supported and rewarded those who were loyal to the NP-AB-DRC cause. The benefits, favours, rights and privileges, written, unwritten, said or unsaid, that were generated by the apartheid dispensation were central to this network.1,3


1.2 Neo-Calvinism and Afrikaner nationalism of 1910 as a political-religious system▼


This political-religious system, started in Potchefstroom by the “Doppers” in the North and by DF Malan in the South in the 1910s under the umbrella of Neo-Calvinism and extreme Afrikaner nationalism (strongly influenced after the 1930s by the racism of the Nazis), later had roots in every sphere of the Afrikaner life – social, economic, personal, religious, cultural. The main targets were the vulnerable poor, lower and middle class Afrikaner voters. They won government in 1948, after which the dogma of White supremacy and racial discrimination were established and practiced to the extreme. The ordinary nationalist Afrikaner citizen benefitted financial, politically and socially. In exchange for these comprehensive benefits and safeguards, nationalist Afrikaner citizens and followers of the NP-AB-DRC alliance were required to accept the NP-AB-DRC leadership’s dogma of White supremacy unquestioningly. It was the task of the Afrikaners to Christianize and “save” the Blacks. All this required the promotion of Afrikaner unity and solidarity over and against individualism, the value ascribed to White racial purity and the obstruction and rejection of all cultural and racial foreignness, etc. The ordinary nationalist Afrikaner citizens in the process surrendered their citizen’s rights to the NP-AB-DRC top management, who came to speak, think and act on behalf of the ordinary nationalist Afrikaners. From the late 1940s, the entire Afrikaner social structure was based on this mandate. The NP-AB-DRC benefits and safeguards (written, unwritten, said and unsaid, justified or unjustified, legal or illegal), safeguarding the Afrikaners from physical, political, social, economical and personal onslaughts from the Blacks, were kept alive by the ordinary voters themselves via general and local elections. This idea of the leaders as “saviours” became entrenched in ordinary Afrikaners: all decisions, planning, solutions, future planning and thinking on Afrikaner interests became centralized as a mandate to be executed exclusively by the NP-AB-DRC top management, with the ordinary Afrikaners in a subordinate position.3,4


It never crossed the minds of the general Afrikaner populace that the NP-AB-DRC leadership could falter or double-cross them (especially after 46 years of benefitting and being favoured), so they accepted in good will the De Klerk regime’s unwritten guarantees of an ongoing Afrikaner utopia after 1994. It was in this context of long-lasting security and political benefit that the ordinary Afrikaners blindly accepted the resolutions of the Referendum and sanctioned the ANC via their NP-AB-DRC leadership as the new regime in 1994.


Cross-references: see Part 4, subdivision


The general aim of this study is to determine if the guarantees that NP-AB-DRC put forward of the continuation of a strong future White South Africa, promised in so many election manifestos of the NP over the years, kicked in after 1994 and if they still exist today. The further aim is to examine how the ordinary Afrikaners handled post-1994 South Africa treats and challenges. The new role players and organizations that promote Afrikaner interests are also evaluated. Central to this research focus is the doctrine of Afrikaner and White supremacy that dominated from 1948–1994 and the right of Afrikaners to dominate Blacks in all areas of life. It is important that the processes and the various role players in the establishment of this doctrine are understood.


The primary aim of this study is to determine the preparedness of Afrikaners to deal with the threats and challenges of the new South Africa.


  • This article is the sixth in a series of seven. The seven articles represent the following research topics: 1) Who is the Afrikaner? 2) The historical determinants and role players in the establishment and reinforcement of racial and ethnic discrimination in the mindsets of Afrikaners; 3) Present and past negative determinants and role players in the establishment and reinforcement of injustices in the mindsets of Afrikaners; 4) The Afrikaners’ failure to understand, accept and appropriate the indigenous realities of South Africa; 5) The vicious cycle of revenge and counter-revenge around apartheid; 6) The preparedness of Afrikaners to deal with the treats and the challenges of the new South Africa; 7) 2017 is the time for thinking, planning and action.


  • The overarching intention of the total study is to determine the position of the Afrikaner in the year 2117.



  • Method



The research was done by means of a literature review. This method aims build a viewpoint as the evidence appears during the course of the research. This approach is used in modern historical research where there is a lack of an established library, like on the topic of the Afrikaner’s present and future position in South Africa. The databases used were EBSCOHost and Sabinet online. Sources included articles from 2015 to 2017, books for the period 1944 to 2016 and new papers covering the period 2016 to 2017 to reflect on the Afrikaners and to put thinking trends, views and opinions on the Afrikaners in perspective.5-7


The research findings are presented in narrative format.



  • Results



3.1 The “Black danger” and NP-AB leadership’s unwritten guarantees of political rights for ordinary Afrikaners


It became clear that the NP-regime was already a government in crisis with regard to the Black problem by the late 1980s. It was the most serious South African statutory problem for the various White regimes since 1910. The Black problem, centring on the incorporation of Black South Africans into the country’s political environment and awarding full voting rights equal to those of the Whites, created enormous conflict in the White society since the founding of the Union of South Africa. This problem, dubbed the Black danger in the 1920s by the rising nationalist Afrikaners to gain voters’ support for their dream of an independent Afrikaner republic outside British domination, became the political vehicle through which DF Malan slowly began to rally the poor lower and middle classes of Afrikaners behind his dogma of Afrikaner nationalism since 1913. Afrikaner status, Afrikaans as an exclusive own Afrikaner language, Afrikaner radical economic transformation, Afrikaner state capture, the racial purity of the Afrikaner, race separation, the limitation of Black politics, Afrikaner social and economical empowerment, Afrikaner nation identification, Afrikaner group identity above individuality etc., became the dominant propaganda of the Malan era.3,4,8


For the Afrikaners, especially the bruised and vulnerable Northern Afrikaners still battling with their psychological and financial scars after the Second Anglo Boer War, this Afrikaner messiah and his message were like manna from heaven. Extreme apartheid was born, driven daily by a growing authoritarian Afrikaner leadership who gradually broke down individual thinking, planning and decision making of the ordinary Afrikaner in exchange for the establishment of an exclusive Whiteman’s utopia. The ordinary Afrikaners’ dependence on their NP-AB-DRC leaders to meet all their needs as citizens in time became internalized in most of the post-1910 Afrikaners and the following three generations up to 1994. It not only led to grand apartheid to manage the ever-growing and ever-present “Black danger,” but also contributed to the rigid and ruthless reinforcement of apartheid for nearly five decades to follow.3,4,8


Schlemmer8 discusses the interrelation between the “Black danger” and archetypical apartheid and the process around its maintenance, including favouring the Afrikaners. He writes that it was developed to its epitome in the Verwoerdian period. Schlemmer describes apartheid as follows8, pp. 8-9:


It represented a brutal, massive but almost heroic attempt on the part of the then ethnically solidary NP of the time to secure a correspondence between nation and territory for Whites by imposing an order much more incisive than race segregation. It was the period of the grand experiment: dividing South Africa into homelands, called national states, by using a full barrage of legislative, economic and administrative strategies. It might have succeeded at that stage of Black politicization and international sympathy had it not been for other major elements in the tradition of government: paternalism; a disregard of the interests and aspirations of the subjugated peoples and the all-pervasive conviction that the most developed nation deserved the lion’s share of resources.


It must be noted that the NP introduced a number of policy reforms and adaptations (from September 1978) that departed from the rigid “traditional” apartheid policy. Radical territorial separation and separation in the political and social lives of the races and the idea of an exclusive and autonomous nation for Whites in the central area (87%) of South Africa was to a great extent abandoned. In these “reforms,” the concept of the White nation made place for the concept of the autonomy of White communities within a multi-racial nation.8 This “new liberal” thinking was reflected by senior NP-leaders like Pik Botha8, p.25 (foreign affairs minister) who argued on 7 February 1986 that as long as suitable constitutional means of protecting minority rights [referring to Afrikaner rights] could be identified, the impact of racial categories should be removed. This “liberal” remark is in line with two earlier remarks by cabinet minister Chris Heunis. On 8 May 1985 he said8, p.38: “Many things have occurred in the past for which some of us must now ask forgiveness,” and, “A White power monopoly has become intolerable…”. PW Botha (President) added to this rhetoric on 21 April 1986 by saying8, p. 38: “We made a mistake,” while earlier on 27 March 1986  FW De Klerk said8, p. 38: “Any system aimed at keeping some of its participants in a subordinate position through clever or devious means is doomed to failure. It must be visible and honestly just and equitable towards everybody” [undoubtedly Blacks]. There was an enormous decline in the numbers of Afrikaner farmers (most adhering to the extreme racist thinking of DF Malan) and they were growing poorer. As such the farmers became unsupportive of the NP and became less important as voters (they declined from 116 000 in 1950 to more or less 65 000 in 1986). By 1985-1986 the NP turned their attention to urban (industrial/business) Afrikaner votes. There was for the first time an open negativity from the side of the NP-AB leaders towards certain sectors of their voter corps and doubt about the continuation of the NP-AB alliance as the guardian and extended family of some Afrikaners.8 A NP member of Parliament made this clear in 1985 when he said8, p. 23: “We have been afraid of White farmers far too long – we must be prepared to lose votes.”


Was the above tactful rhetoric of 1985–1986 on the side of the NP leaders the masked introduction of Black rule? Were they giving notice of the end of the existing mandate of the NP-AB leadership (from as early as 1913) that so gradually eroded the individual thinking, planning and decision making of the Afrikaner? Was the Mozambican–Portuguese syndrome of 1974 arriving in South Africa? The answer is a decisive “yes” in terms of above rhetoric. FW De Klerk’s dramatic turn-around in political thinking confirms it.8 On 5 February 1986 he said publically that8, p. 38: “voluntary group association would lead to chaos and confusion,” reflecting clearly his hidden racism and his support for the traditional NP-AB race policy from the days of DF Malan. Only a month later, he expresses a contradicting view when on 27 March 1986 he says8, p.38: “Any system aimed at keeping some of its participants [undoubtedly Blacks] in a subordinate position through clever or devious means is doomed to failure. It must be visible and honestly just and equitable towards everybody [undoubtedly Blacks].” These leaders were not only warning Afrikaners that the mandate of the NP-AB leaders had come to an end, but also that they can no longer guarantee the political, social, personal, as well as the economical and civil rights to which the Afrikaners were accustomed too.


Although it is argued that the 6 May 1987 general election gave the NP a mandate to work towards the central representation of Blacks outside the politically and economically marginalised homelands, it was clear that the interests of Whites had to be guaranteed by the NP-AB leaders for them to stay in power. The inroads of the Conservative Party (CP), founded on 20 March 1982, into Afrikaner politics in the May 1987 general election slowed down the “new liberal thinking” of the NP-leaders on South African politics. The CP warned about the NP-AB-DRC leadership surrendering the rights of the Afrikaners in the name justice and equality to Blacks. In this election 610 516 voters (29.62%) voted anti-NP (conservative right), representing a 25% swing away from the NP’s 1981 electoral support. The CP obtained 22 seats to become the official opposition on its first attempt and only five years after establishment. This outcome gave the NP a taste of what could be expected if dramatic pro-Black reforms and “liberal” political changes followed. (It reminded of the unexpected fall of the Hertzog regime in the general election of 1943 to JC Smuts. Smuts reduced the nationalist Afrikaners to only 43 seats against his 110 seats in a house of 160).3,9 PW Botha put the brakes on, reassuring the Afrikaners of the NP’s good intentions.9


In 12 June 1986 the State of Emergency called in 1985 was widened to include the whole country, whereas the 1985-proclamation was only applicable to one third of South Africa’s 133 magisterial districts. This caused a reconsideration of the “emergence” of “liberal” political thinking within the NP. Politicians reassured Afrikaners of the NP-AB guarantees for their protection in the future. Many ordinary citizens saw the implications of the 1986 state of emergency as a “restarting” of apartheid by the NP-AB leadership by means of suppression tactics.8


The doubts and distrust in the NP-AB leadership which had started to emerge in 1985 to 1986, was quickly laid to rest with various anti-Black actions. The NP-AB reconfirmed their commitment to safeguard in future the political, social, personal, economical and civil rights of the Afrikaners.8,9


Notwithstanding all the talk during 1985–1986 within the NP’s top management of some form of “incorporation” of Blacks into South African politics, the NP rhetoric still contained the old unifying emphasis on the concept of a European standard and way of life, mythical or otherwise, which must be upheld at all times, reports Schlemmer.8, p.27 The NP was still concerned about an entire subset of Whites whose rights, as was done since 1948, had to be safeguarded and guaranteed by the NP-AB leaders in its mandate to Afrikaners if they wanted to stay in power. The NP member of Parliament, Albert Nothnagel, describes these interests of Afrikaners inside the NP-AB leadership’s mandate as follows8, p. 27: “…a combination of lifestyle, a sense of origin and identity, the psychological satisfaction of an in-group community life, standards of public order, behaviour and respectability and sufficient control over the allocation of resources and the maintenance of security to ensure the continuation of these benefits”.


Another senior NP member of Parliament summed up the major interests of nationalist Afrikaners in 1985-1986 as being8, p.27: “…security and standards – there is a great fear (among whites) that a third world situation will arise in their areas.” A senior NP-MP reflected that some in the inner circles of the NP wanted the old rigid apartheid guidelines to be included in future guarantees on Afrikaner rights8, p. 27: “National Party thinking gave the central concern a more ethnic flavour but also stressed the composite character of its ideology by listing Western values, Christian values, life views, community cohesion, material security, a familiar and recognisable environment, a strong economy, property rights, an objective legal system and the protection of established institutions in general. These everyday or popular interests would be taken for granted in any typical Western society. In South Africa, however, they are clearly much more consciously experienced as constituting a first world sub-society within a third world continent”.


Extreme apartheid, driven daily by an authoritarian nationalist Afrikaner leadership, remained undisturbed up to the 1990 Referendum and the 1994 transfer of political power to the ANC. PW Botha supported it in his address to Parliament after winning the 6th May 1987 general election.8 Schlemmer refers to the following keywords in Botha’s speech8pp.13-14: “…It is not possible in a multicultural country like the Republic of South Africa to talk about the protection of individual rights unless one talk about the protection of minority rights at the same time…it is (also) impossible to talk about the protection of minority rights unless one talks about the protection of minority groups at the same time and the prevention of the domination unless groups enjoy statutory recognition and the relationship among them is regulated constitutionally…Constitutional development cannot take place in isolation, but has to be preceded and accompanied by economic and social processes to create the conditions in which renewal may be continued on the basis of security…our challenge lies in narrowing the gap between the first world and the third world without lowering standards in South Africa…At the same time the government will ensure that safety and security will the highest priority because without them development and progress are not possible…”.


It is clear from the above that the NP-AB leadership tried to guarantee the Afrikaners’ political and other rights in the future during the late 1980s. It was included in their political planning, whether by legation or by brute force. This outcome placed the Afrikaners in a much more favourable position than the Mozambican Portuguese, who had to leave Mozambique empty-handed and without any guarantee of their Mozambican political position and status in the future.


The doctrine of racism and its constant impression on nationalist Afrikaners by the NP-AB-DRC alliance’s leadership led to a successful Afrikaner ethnic and racial despotism within half a century in South Africa. The NP-AB-DRC used methods such as ostracising and punishing dissident Afrikaners for political deviating and anti-Afrikaner behaviour and compensating people for approved pro-Afrikaner behaviours. This situation was never challenged or questioned by grassroots nationalist Afrikaners and was inculcated in the new generations of nationalist Afrikaners. Greed played a part in the start and continuation of conformity to racism.4,10-12


Most Afrikaners grew up in this undemocratic political context. They obliged themselves to a lifestyle manipulated by the arrogant leaders of the NP-AB-DRC alliance. By means of parliamentary mandating, they indirectly took away the ordinary Afrikaners’ basic right to decide for themselves on their behaviour, thinking and planning. These are common rights in a democracy.13 Ordinary Afrikaners were trapped within a doctrine where discrimination against non-Whites and negative attitudes against other ethnic groups were regarded as appropriate, correct and morally justified. They adhered to the opinions, advice, viewpoints and integrity of the leaders of the NP-AB-DRC alliance unquestioningly, even if their own logical thinking contradicted it.4,13,14


For most nationalist Afrikaners, the political rights, privileges, benefits and favours they gained by supporting and practicing apartheid became similar to what Ferguson14, p.3 writes of the rich, imperial and arrogant British in the 1900s: “…a state of affairs as normal, certain, and permanent, except in the direction of further improvement, and any deviation from it as aberrant, scandalous, and avoidable”. However, there is always an expensive price attached to such behaviour in the future, especially where greed is the motivator. For the greedy British it came in two devastating World Wars and the loss of their Empire; for the nationalist Afrikaners it arrived in 1994, stripping them of apartheid’s rights, privileges, benefits and favours.4,13,14


3.2 The intertwining of the NP and the AB in creating and guaranteeing Afrikaner rights▼


It is important to reflect in short on the Afrikaner leadership who gradually subdued the independent thinking, planning and decision making of the ordinary Afrikaner in exchange for favour in an exclusive “Whiteman’s Utopia.”


The NP and AB in time developed into independent and comprehensive safe havens for and guardians of nationalist Afrikaners’ political and cultural interests. The NP-AB leadership’s political and military power as part of the Afrikaner government for the period 1948 up to 1994, made them, in terms of opinion-forming on and implementation of political, racial and cultural matters, unchallengeable and mighty political machines. This position offered them the opportunity to force their racist political opinions and plans, formed over many years of discussion, evaluation and testing, to promote only Afrikaner interests. This was driven by a small group of super-nationalist Afrikaners. This NP-AB power gradually led to corruptive and nepotistic result where more or less 20 000 members of the AB, supported further by as many of its “Junior ABs”, called the “Ruiterwagte” and “Rapportryers”, enjoyed many work and financial opportunities and various other rights and privileges that other Afrikaners outside the circle of the AB and NP, were denied. There was even a clear discrimination between members with dual membership of the NP and AB and members with only NP membership. There was open and total discrimination against any dissident Afrikaner. These Afrikaners were in the same position as the suppressed Blacks politically, socially and economically.2,11,15,16


Afrikaner dissidents and non-conformists were often labelled as communists. This followed on widespread propaganda and stigmatization of anyone who challenged the broader racist and supremacist belief system on politics and culture. There is sound reason for “liberal” Afrikaners of that time to say that they have only known discrimination their whole lives. They grew up mostly in the politically liberal southern part of the country, studied at various Afrikaner universities and worked in the northern or southern parts of South Africa. They experienced it first under the NP-AB alliance from 1948 to 1994 in terms of White-on-White discrimination and then from 1994 under the ANC-regime and its partners in terms of Black-on-White discrimination. This tendency to discriminate contributed too many English-speaking Whites, liberal Afrikaners and of course other races to slowly turn away from the Afrikaner nationalist establishment after 1948. From the 1930s onwards there was a strong Nazi influence in the NP-AB’s general vision and political views and doctrines. Their indoctrination and manipulation was so effective that the arguments and opinions of political opponents of the NP-AB alliance never really made any impact on the general Afrikaner population. Many Black and White opponents were scandalously silenced with jail sentences, exile and murder by the NP regime’s secret agents. Suppression and even murder became approved and sanctioned behaviours for the nationalist Afrikaner followers as a result of the political doctrines and false information fed to them by the NP-regime’s leadership.2,8,11,15-19


The NP-AB alliance was already established by the 1930s and together they indoctrinated common Afrikaners, especially the various poor segments of the lower and middle classes. This alliance’s profoundly negative impact on the broader social society and the internalization of their political contamination among the highly receptive and uninformed ordinary nationalist Afrikaners evident from the growth in member numbers of the NP from 1948 to the late 1970s. The top management of the NP-AB alliance quickly became the sole thinkers, decision makers and spokespersons for the common nationalist Afrikaner. They instilled in the Afrikaner that racism was appropriate and correct. The Afrikaner youth became their main target.2,4,10-12,17,20-22


In March 1992 the ordinary Afrikaners, still guided and driven daily by an authoritarian Afrikaner-leadership which had minimised their self-thinking,-planning and-decision-making in exchanged for their exclusive living rights and protection in a Whiteman’s Utopia created by Verwoerd in 1961 with his First Republic of South Africa, agreed to F W De Klerk’s plea to vote in a referendum endorsing only the negotiation process on the possibility of a new type of Black-White mutual-government.2,4,22


On “total Black-rule” was F W De Klerk dumb in the referendum: indeed he promised a second referendum on the matter of change of ruler-ship or handing over to Black-rule, but it seems his volte face-experience (changing from right-wing to left-wing in the NP), starting suddenly on 2 February 1990, made him seemingly short in memory about his future political responsibilities and promises as far it concerns the future interests of Afrikaners. F W De Klerk’s volte face– or Damascus-experience of 1990 is still today “undeclared behaviour”. What is clear is that De Klerk contributed extensively to the haste-up of the dissimilation of the Afrikaners.2,4,22


It must be note further that the De Klerk–regime was facing more and more a right-wing backlash inside the NP: In the February 1992 election they saw a serious decline in votes at the traditional NP-AB-Dopper Parliament-seat of Potchefstroom. This was a clear decline starting in 1990 under leadership of the political-inexperienced F W De Klerk’s and after the reconstructed NP becoming a multi-racial party. It was a demoralized NP that was ruling and for the NP-caucus it was clear that the Conservative Party (CP) can be the new White-rulers in the future. Indeed, it became also clear that very few of NP-members would be re-voted to Parliament in a post-Apartheid RSA. November 1993 statistics showed an estimated NP support of between a mere 15% to 18% in general, while with Whites it declined to less than 34% and Blacks basically zero. From Afrikaners side it was thus already obvious for many NP-members in 1993 that the NP under F W De Klerk and his right-hand man, Roelf Meyer, were not a match for the ANC’s negotiation-team and that the NP would not come to power again in the future, either in a Black- or White political system. The NP-leadership’s capitulation to the ANC, even before the 1992-Referendum, became fact, as the then minister Dawie De Villiers bemoaned it to the De Klerk-cabinet. De Klerk and his cadres failed already at that time to guarantee the NP-members and other White-voters who had voted for them naively in the Referendum, in future the coverage of power, protection and patronage previously offered by the NP to them: an outcome proofed to be totally correct in 2017. The NP was a lame duck from 1990 under the leadership of F W De Klerk as far as first-order Afrikaner-interests concern. The first so called democratic elections of 27 April 1993 was well-masked by the De Klerk-regime in the handing over of power to Black-ruling. Looking back today on this development, it was nothing less than a well-planned bloodless coup d’ état, executed successfully by a small band of dissipated Afrikaner nationalist on the unsuspected Afrikanerdom, changing their political milieu for ever. Indeed, it was the officially start-up of straightforward majority Black-rule and the end of the “traditional” rights, privileges, favours, etc., exclusively enjoyed (justified or unjustified) by the Whites during Apartheid up to 1994.2,4,22


In 1992 the general Afrikaner population, still guided by an authoritarian Afrikaner leadership, agreed to vote in a referendum on Black rule. The outcome was a “yes.” The naive Afrikaners trusted the various unwritten promises of the NP-AB-DRC leadership that nothing radical will follow after 1994 because of checks and balances in the government of national unity. (In large F W De Klerk owed his 1992-Referendum “victory” to his so called “guarantees” in the constitutional proposals for which he sought a mandate. This should have had included permanent power sharing in a federal system in which power was to be devolved to the maximum possible extent to regions, a free market economy and guarantees for the status of Afrikaans, etc.). Initially the Afrikaners’ reality and rights seemed untouched. All initially went well in the “reconciliation government” until the NP was basically ousted by the Mandela-government (an expected normal development in political evolution and revolution) and De Klerk chose an escape route. The trust of the Afrikaners quickly changed into distrust with the unmasking of the De Klerk-regime’s true political colours. With the entry of Marthinus van Schalkwyk as the new leader of the NP, its total collapse arrived quickly. Suddenly the Afrikaners had not only been double-crossed and betrayed by their trusted NP-AB leadership, but they were also left without any of the many guarantees or back-ups assured by the NP-AB leadership to steer their political future. With the collapse of the NP as a political and military power and a safe haven for the ordinary Afrikaner nationalists, Afrikaners were “homeless.” Many Afrikaners see themselves as a group without a “destiny;” strangers in their previous own territory, stripped from their immense political power and favour, while they seem more and more unwelcome in the ANC-regime.2,4,22


What the unprepared and naive broader population of Afrikaners failed to understand, even as late as in the 2000s, is that the De Klerk-regime was not in a position to guarantee them any of the rights that they enjoyed in such abundance under grand apartheid. These guarantees were worthless political promises, emotional rhetoric, utterances used by opportunistic politicians to promote only their own interests and to manipulate. Many senior NP-negotiators realized this well, but stay silent on the fact that the NP could not secure a constitutional blueprint that contained all of its proposals build on the Referendum-promises in virtually unchanged form. It can be read already in the 1990 to 1994 failed management of F W De Klerk and his regime to control at that stage already violence and to assure good government themselves, forget in a Black-regime.22 Spence22, p. 40writes: “Coupled with political violence has been sharply increasing criminal violence, including numerous cases of the brutal slaying of elderly whites on isolated farms. This, too, has rubbed off on de Klerk by strengthening the perception that his administration has been unable to protect communities and has ‘lost control’”. De Klerk’s “lost of control”, starting in 1990 and that had stayed with him through the rest of his official political career, is undoubtedly still with the Afrikaners in 2017.


It is doubtful if the De Klerk-regime really would have wanted to guarantee these rights, even if they could. After 1994 the NP-AB leaders had a new master to serve and to please and new gains to make for themselves again. Afrikaners misunderstood what De Klerk meant on 27 March 1986 when he said8, p.38: “Any system aimed at keeping some of its participants in a subordinate position through clever or devious means is doomed to failure. It must be visible and honestly just and equitable towards everybody”. After 1994 he extended his so-called ‘justice’ and ‘equitability’ to everybody in South Africa – remember: there was a new master to serve and to please! Also they missed out on his volte face or “Damascus experience” of 2 February 1990, seemingly changing his spiritual visions on politics dramatically.


Afrikaners did not even realize how well planned the NP-AB rejection was. These leaders quickly sought ways to ensure that they would not be prosecuted for apartheid crimes and to make new gains for themselves. Mamphela Ramphele describes these hidden intentions and mechanisms of self-enrichment and personal gain that characterized the NP-ANC talks on a new political dispensation instead of a spirit of keeping promises of political rights for ordinary Afrikaners after 1994 when she writes23, p. 20:


It is significant that those who led the charge on the NP side in the negotiation of our political settlement were Afrikaners elite redeployed from business and academia.


Their brief was to protect the foundations of capital accumulation and obstruct any redistributive policy framework designed to address the extreme poverty and inequality affecting the majority of people.


Key business people worked patiently to shift the mindsets of the less-experienced ANC leaders to get them to adopt market-friendly liberal economic policy frameworks.


The elite comprise underpinning our 1994 political settlement pressured the ANC, in the interest of political power, to sacrifice redistribution and concomitant socio-economic upliftment of the citizens, while the NP exchanged political power for continuing White economic power.


Politicians’ hidden agendas and conscienceless abuse and betrayal of their people are possibly best described by Palkhivala when he says24, p. 81: “…it is beyond hope that the correct guidance can ever come from politicians. They are self-centred and have their minds glued on their own personal prospects and those of their party; and shamelessly look upon people as vote banks and not as human beings entitled to disinterested guidance from their so-called political leaders”.


With the political bankruptcy of the NP and its loss of power, the AB, once the NP’s think tank and brain trust and used over the years as a powerful political machine to ensure the capture, command and control of South Africa for the exclusive benefit of the Afrikaners, came also the lost its political and military power.23 Only a remnant is left today, just enough for a museum piece. (If the ANC-regime should ever consider an Afrikaner institute and its members for prosecution for crimes against humanity, the AB would be the most appropriate one).


It is clear that the ordinary Afrikaner’s position is ultimately in some aspects the same as that of the Mozambican Portuguese who were forced to flee in 1974. Both were suddenly, after the coming of Uhuru, on their own after being betrayed by their long-trusted leaders who they served with utmost loyalty, support and submissiveness. Both found themselves in an extremely hostile political setup. Both were forced to find their own solutions to function. Both were to a great extent to blame them selves because of their own greed, self-positioning, arrogance and White supremacy that closed their eyes to the indigenous realities of Southern Africa.


Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5 and Part 4, subdivision 3.2.


3.3 The phantom of the DRC is still lurking in some Afrikaners’ mindsets▼


Today all that is left of the Afrikaner’s previous bullying institutions to guide, support and indoctrinate him with inappropriate Afrikaner ideologies and dogmas in his present personal and political disorientation and insecurity are the three main Afrikaner churches. Here the DRC is still the dominant role player.


The historical role of the DRC in the establishment and continuation of racial discrimination is apparent from the outset. Today, after the collapse of the NP and the paralysing of the AB, it is the strongest conditioner and booster of the Afrikaner’s racial attitudes, although most of the nationalist Afrikaners have publically moved from hyper- to hypo-nationalism.


The DRC’s involvement with apartheid is hidden in a church-political foundation where racial differentiation and racial purity were prominent church doctrines from the 1850s. History shows that the DRC’s formal racial diversity began in 1857 when its Cape Synod introduced segregated congregations. It was a policy that was consistent with the already racially discriminatory church policies of the DRC itself and the two other reformed churches that were founded and very active in the Transvaal and Free State republics.3,10-12


The 1857-decision was undoubtedly one of the main precursors to the grand apartheid of 1948 to 1994. It introduced a unique church-political life and way of thinking among most of the DRC members. In time it became entrenched in its members across the country. The DRC’s church culture had become embedded in a contaminating alliance and interaction between the hierarchies of the DRC and nationalist Afrikaner politicians, as well as the leaderships of the NP and that of the AB. After 1948, this interaction became part of the thinking and behaviours of DRC members.3,10,12


After the 1948 NP take-over of the South African government, the DRC gave its unconditional support and approval to the NP’s new policy of apartheid and started to build the DRC’s political authority within this NP-DRC alliance. The DRC used official church literature to advocate and to justify apartheid, which they claimed to be “godlike diversity,” while several influential and leading DRC ministers, academics and writers produced written propaganda to promote and to establish apartheid in general in the church life and to justify apartheid from Scripture in the DRC. Texts from the Bible were reformulated and misrepresented. The sole intention was to instil apartheid in DRC members and in their religious, social and personal lives as something that was Biblically correct.3,10,12


By 1950 the DRC propaganda had been so successful that a joint congress of the three Afrikaner churches and the Dutch Reformed Mission Church [the Coloured DRC at that time, today the United Reformed Church (URC)] in Bloemfontein decided overwhelmingly in favour of total racial separation in their church life. The DRC apartheid’s policy was reaffirmed at several successive General Synods. Socio-economic and political racial discriminations were quickly embraced, internalized and promoted by many opportunistic nationalist Afrikaner DRC members. Apartheid legislation for example led to the expropriation of the land and properties of non-Whites to create White Areas. Afrikaners were enormously benefitted as they could obtain ownership of these properties cheaply. Job reservation also benefited them. Additionally, apartheid seemed to serve as an external force to “protect” DRC members from the temptation to intermix with non-Whites. A Christian dogma of wisdom had made place for a pathological dogma of financial-political greed in many DRC members’ lives3,10,12


Although the DRC’s racial policies evoked criticism from some of its liberal theologians, the impact was minimal and these elements were promptly suppressed by the hierarchy of the DRC. The expulsions of dissident DRC ministers and thinkers demolished criticism against the DRC’s racism. The DRC’s General Synod decision of 1974 that the Church of Christ (and hence the DRC) had to be opened to all races, peoples and nations, were entirely ignored by the NP-AB hierarchy of the DRC and the managerial boards of the various DRC congregations.3,10,12


The DRC-NP affiliation in time became even more contaminated by extreme racism, which was absolutely entrenched until the fall of the NP in 1994. The NP-AB alliance influenced the DRC as an equal partner. Its stated principle of Afrikaner Christian nationalism changed quickly to Afrikaner Nationalist Christianity with hyper-Afrikaner nationalism in the first place. In this system, racial discrimination, despite its devastating negative psychological and financial consequences for non-Whites, was practiced by its indoctrinated DRC members, which included a strong contingent of NP-politicians and AB-members.3,10,12


Racism is still part of the DRC and present among its members. The established value and belief systems of nationalist Christianity were not dispelled by the DRC in 1994 with the advent of the new South Africa. Today it is still conveyed subtly to DRC-members and inculcated by its hierarchy, just disguised enough to operate within the provisions of the South African Constitution and the Human Rights Commission.


Since 1994 many of the DRC-members’ (especially the elderly) negative racial values were unfortunately strengthened by a multitude of destructive events in the country rather than mitigated: examples of these events are the loss of their “Afrikaner state,” the post-1994 political, social and economic chaos that was created by the ANC government, White poverty, unprecedented violence, crime, corruption and murder. The worst was most certainly the miserable way their long-time partner and patron, the NP, left them lurched and alone. The AB has also started to fade as an emotional and political guide. These events left them disillusioned and politically more radical, with just one notable Afrikaner fortress left that still seeks to protect their church-life, personal and cultural rights, namely the DRC in its current, rigid racial form.2-4,10,12


The fact that DRC-members (especially its youth) have been leaving the church in droves the last decade for the less racially rigid charismatic churches (a phenomenon that will increase dramatically in the next decade), together with the lack of inflow of active, young members, as well as the rise in deaths of its elderly members, predicts that the DRC, as a significant driver to internalize and to strengthen racism among its members, will disappear in the near future. However, to think at this stage that racial discrimination will disappear from the DRC is wishful thinking – their elderly members have been indoctrinated for too long on the racial differences between Whites and non-Whites and the right of Afrikaners to discriminate against non-Whites. This contamination will stay with the DRC until it disbands or all its elderly members have passed away.


Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision



  • Discussion



4.1      Past and present actions and movements to safeguard the Afrikaner’s future


It is clear that no provision was made by the NP-AB-DRC alliance to accommodate and to steer the ordinary Afrikaners after 1994 in their adaptation to a new South Africa. The changes in their political, social, economic and personal functioning in the post-1994 South Africa were not only unexpected, but often phenomenal. Many negative emotional outcomes have followed. Afrikaner experiences of injustices, bitterness, insecurity and indirectness should surely be addressed urgently. This seems to have attracted the attention of a few “saviours and savers” of the Afrikaners.


Can Afrikaners stand on their own legs after their NP-leadership and the NP-AB guardianship failed them in 1994 like the proto-Afrikaners successfully did in the 1700s? South African politics and human rights have dramatically changed in the last 20 years, making the racial discrimination and racial misbehaviour that the older generation of Afrikaners grew up with criminal offences. Lifestyles, habits, beliefs, socio-economics, thinking about the future, traditions, group values, family life and demographic limitations have all changes dramatically in South Africa. The individual has detached from group conformity so that it is unnecessary for people to be accommodated in close groups or to be guided by “exclusive” leaders and groups to survive in the future. Also, most ordinary Afrikaners have as individuals started to make these changes of modernization. The condemnation of the NP, the side-lining of the AB and the vague role of the DRC in many Afrikaners’ lives, confirm the process of Afrikaners’ departure from these three previously dominant racism contaminated groups. This new self-orientation and individuality makes the chances excellent for the individual Afrikaner to take on the many challenges of New South Africa. Many Afrikaners, especially the young, have successfully crossed over from the exclusivist Afrikaner identity and entity to which many Afrikaners were exposed, to an inclusive South African identity and entity, driven primarily by indigenous realities. On the other hand it seems as if as many ordinary Afrikaners are still caught in the culture of the old South Africa, drifting around without direction or aims and beset with conflict. Many others show a tendency of rationalizing the present in terms of the past, seriously clouding their insight on conflict and adaptation. Many of these persons seem to have fallen prey to opportunistic “helpers of the Afrikaner case.”


The question is what has happened in general to ordinary Afrikaners in their daily functioning as citizens in South Africa from 1994 up to 2017? How have they managed to deal with the threats and challenges of an unfriendly political environment? The question is also who are the persons and institutions who/which are taking care of them or offer them support services in the absence of the NP and AB?


Before and after 1994 there have been various attempts by new role players “to safeguard the Afrikaners from dissolution.” These role players had varying success. They also offered “guarantees” and visions on how the “dire political, social, economical and cultural situation of Afrikaners” can and will be rectified by these so-called pro-Afrikaner organizations and by a small group of self-appointed new leaders of the Afrikaners. Some of these so-called “saviours” and “rescuers” or “Afrikaner-White helmets” gained the support of a portion of ordinary nationalist Afrikaners who are still anchored in apartheid thinking and the nostalgia of living in grand apartheid (and of course fantasies of re-establishing it in the near future).


Whatever ideas opportunists impress on present-day insecure Afrikaners, the reality is that the Afrikaners can just one day suddenly disappear: dissolute by their own doing, due to natural processes or a hostile environment. These circumstances ask of Afrikaners to look to the future constructively. We can only hope they will think, plan and act more constructively and successfully than their ancestors did thus far. Every Afrikaner must know and understand the indigenous realities of South Africa in order to decide objectively on his or her own fate and future, as well as that of their immediate descendants. Any support and guidance offered either to the Afrikaners as individuals or as a group, must be critically evaluated, otherwise they will be exploited again as the NP-AB leaders did for many years. It is all the more tragic if a people become dissolute of their own doing. Following wrong advice, guidance, trends and solutions spell dissolution by own doing; Afrikaners must note it well.2-4,10,11,14,22,25


The important question at this stage is: What did the Afrikaner himself do to better or to safeguard his position before 1992 and in the post-1994 political dispensation of South Africa? Various options were in available in the past. They are still available, but they will now achieve less than they could have 20 years or more ago.


One option is (or should have been in the 1960s) the Chamberlain-Churchill approach, also known as the “Chamberlain-Churchill reaction of self-assertion”3,14. The Chamberlain element’s intention is to appease the enemy at all time (stemming from the policy of Chamberlain to appease Hitler at all times and not to be aggressive to his neighbouring countries). These actions lack constructive resistance to dangers to the tribe’s existence (the NP-regime’s opportunistic approach since the late-1980s and onwards to Black power was to appease them, while at the same time surrendering power slowly). The Churchill element (representing Churchill’s belief that there was no limits to Hitler’s aggression and that he must be fought and neutralized) means that one takes on the enemy in various forms, representing full resistance and battle without fear of annihilation (an approach strongly inculcated in the armed forces during the offices of Verwoerd and Vorster).3,4


Another approach propagated by some Afrikaner political strategists was and is still to trust the future in terms previous historical outcomes for the Afrikaners and the “sacred” role of the Afrikaner in the South African history (an approach very near the Chamberlain approach of appeasement, but more passive and characterized by a lack of any involvement). This fatalism in the Afrikaner thinking and belief system becomes quite apparent in times of loss and failure as a group or after being abandoned by leaders, as reflected in old Israel. As a result of total disempowerment and their dire situation, the group stops all resistance to the enemy. Even constructive actions stop. Self-isolation and self-pity are prominent. Biblical examples of the Jewish people being rescued from unavoidable dissolution motivate the Afrikaners to believe that a “new life” is waiting and that they will be saved. This thinking seems to find fertile ground among politically, economically and socially suppressed people when they did not implement the Chamberlain-Churchill approach in time.14


Often a belief in the mystical and trust in the supernatural visions of prophets, intertwined with a historical/Biblical context, is used to manipulate people in search for a positive future. In the case of the Afrikaners, a prominent role player in these future visions of Afrikaner salvation is the “prophet” Siener van Rensburg. He prophesied that “Afrikaners will come to power again in South Africa.” In this context, the prophecy of an independent Boer state becomes prominent. This belief seems to be strongly established among the Northern Afrikaners. 26, 27


There are also the various, but mostly false utopias that “Afrikaner-friendly organizations” and self-appointed leaders present to ordinary Afrikaners. These organizations seldom offer free membership and support. They use the motto “we are here for the Afrikaners,” to make money in the short run, knowing very well that their efforts “to better the Afrikaner’s position” locally or globally, is of little significance. The promises, if they are fulfilled, are often not sustainable in the long run.


The above three reactions are discussed more detail in the following sections. These sections discuss the potential to assist Afrikaners to adapt to new threats and challenges in the new South Africa, as well as possibilities to avert their dissolution in a century’s time. On the other hand, the discussion reflects often doubtful business enterprises and dubious characters that can harm Afrikaners interests, especially the poorer and less educated lower classes who are desperate for help, guidelines and new leaders to promote their interests and safeguard them from political dangers.


4.1.1 Chamberlain-Churchill approach


The Chamberlain-Churchill approach, designed in 1939 as a guideline to fight the continuous and constant rise in the aggression of Hitler and his Third Reich, seems to be a good guideline for evaluating what the Afrikaners could have done in the past and what they can still do to protect their interests, although less would be possible at present.14,28


Niall Ferguson describes the Afrikaner’s choice between fight or flight and the consequences that awaited Afrikaners after 1994 (and as far back as 1910) if they acted in certain ways well when he writes14, p. 318: “Even a dog has a choice when confronted by a more aggressive dog: to fight or to flee.” Based on the Chamberlain-Churchill approach, the Afrikaners had four options in the 1990s14, p. 319:


  • Acquiescence. The primary approach of the Afrikaner since 1994 was “hoping for the best”, trusting that the Blacks’ gestures of good will towards the Whites are sincere. They let the Blacks “have their way for a while in South Africa” before taking some repair actions. It seems the Afrikaners gave the ANC unwritten permission with their Yes-vote in the 1993 referendum to mismanage the country, to practice corruption, nepotism, fraud, and to take financial mismanagement and misadministration of the country to an unprecedented high. The present threats to their pensions, capital, property, as well as AA, EE and EEB (nothing other than legalized racial discrimination), are a few of many dilemmas suddenly facing the Afrikaner (but to which they willingly agreed).

Resistance to these discriminations, especially outside the prescribed legal channels, can only spell disaster and war. A war is beyond the means of Afrikaners at this stage. The Afrikaners have no political or military power to obtain justice; they only have legal action in terms of the Constitution and the Constitutional Court.


This tendency to “hope for the best” corresponds with the (failed) guarantees offered by the De Klerk regime when they mesmerized the Afrikaners into voting yes in exchange for a guarantee that the goodwill of the ANC-elite is sincere and will be honoured in the long run. The (failed) government of national unity should have affirmed this sincere goodwill of the Blacks. The Afrikaners forgot about “for a while before they will be taken repair actions.” Seeing as they lost their power by their own free will in 1994, they have no means to take repair actions besides the Constitutional Court, which can only bring limited “reparation.”


  • Retaliation. In the context of retaliating are time and resources important. A retaliation party has to act with speed and overwhelming power. This can include physical actions like military retaliation for wrongdoing against the victim (as in the case of the British and Europeans in reaction to Nazi aggression). The Afrikaners did have this kind of reaction up to the 1990s towards the ANC and the other Black revolutionary organizations. However, since the Afrikaners lost all political and military power in 1994, any direct organized military action is excluded as an option. At the moment, retaliation represents only the implementing of “formal objections and legal steps” as reactions to offensive ANC actions. The only option is passive actions such as approaching the Constitutional Court, and where available and allowed, official parliamentary actions. Thus far these reactions have had limited positive outcomes with respect to Afrikaner interests. Since 1994 Afrikaners have been second-class citizens, and there is very little they can do about it.


  • Deterrence. During WW2, the British entered into an armed struggle with friendly countries to form a strong united military front to take on the Nazis and to bring them down. In the case of the Afrikaners, there was (White) cooperation with the Portuguese in Mozambique and Angola and Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) before the 1990s to take up arms against (Black) aggressive revolutionary organizations. After the end of Portuguese rule in Africa and the ousting of the Smith-regime in Rhodesia, the Afrikaner was alone. After 1994, the scenario changed from military to political combat. After the collapse of the NP and the diminishing of the right-wing faction of Afrikaners, the only alternatives left for the disempowered Afrikaners were to join strong existing and upcoming political opposition groups, like the DA, or to found their own strong cultural, social, economical and political structures. The aim: to build up “an own ability to strike legally and politically at the opponent.” So far political bodies like the DA have had limited politically success in addressing the failures of the ANC in parliament, municipalities, governmental departments, parastatals, etc. The founding of bodies like Afriforum and Solidariteit has in individual cases been successful with effort to safeguard and promote Afrikaner interests, although on a very limited scale. Corrections of ANC wrongdoings via other official and non-governmental bodies were and are mostly limited as a result of the strong representing of the ANC in the parliament and other executive and legal structures. It is clear that the Afrikaners are not only side-lined, but are in a process of losing more ground in the present governmental setup. There have been no successful deterrence efforts since 1994, nor is there any possibility of this being a real option.


  • Pre-emption. The nationalist Afrikaner regime was very well armed and good at eliminating threats with pre-emptive military strikes. They kept political problems like the “Black danger” at bay with these forces. Since 1994 this option has not been available to Afrikaners. At the moment Afrikaners lack any military or political executive power to end the ANC-regime and Black authority. Another form of pre-emptive behaviour is needed, namely new political empowerment. In this regard the Afrikaners lack the numbers to challenge the ANC in elections or to do “political pre-emptive strikes” on the ANC powerhouse. The Afrikaners’ greatest chance at pre-emptive action is through the DA, where they are in a subordinate position inside a semi-Black organization. All indications are that the DA will become more Black-orientated with time, although they undoubtedly have more sympathy for Afrikaner interests than the ANC in the short term. Afrikaners therefore have no powerful tool to strike with pre-emptive action.


In terms of the Chamberlain-Churchill approach to rectifying political instability, Afrikaners have basically lost all means. Their own problematic economic situation, declining political empowerment and often their own short-sightedness, have caused them to in effect become a political failure. They have become aliens in the new South Africa, a group without any pre-emptive power, often burying his head in the sand like an ostrich.


In terms of the “Chamberlain/Churchill reactions of self-assertion” required to neutralize treats of nation dissimilation, it seems that Afrikaners had become helpless to take any preventive actions in terms of self-preservation and self-defence against or assault on their political enemies to assure their future. The Chamberlain-Churchill approach can basically only be implemented and activated from an existing position of strength. In the Afrikaner’s case, such action was needed long before 1994 when the Afrikaners were still in a position of power to force down decisions favouring them, like an Afrikaner homeland. In the Afrikaners’ emotional and financial dependence (and blind trust) of their NP-AB leadership since the 1960s, thoughts of such self-remedial actions were just unthinkable and unneeded because history could never go wrong for the Afrikaners. Their dependence made them an easy prey in the 1990s for the De Klerk-regime, which was beset with the Chamberlain-inclination of acquiescence to appease and please the ANC and to surrender without any resistance. In the 1993 referendum, Afrikaners were easy prey to be caught by the De Klerk-regime and the ANC.2,4,14,28


After the De Klerk-regime disbanded the Afrikaners’ armed forces, there was no chance for any turn-around or a full Churchill-approach to fight the threat to their political rights. The Afrikaners are in a sense to blame for this, since they had ample time to get rid of De Klerk or to reject his surrender to the ANC. Self-assertion is still available, but within the hostile setup it is much more limited. In the Afrikaner’s case it seems as if the dog is fleeing, and with good reasons. For the first time, it seems as if the odds are just too great to overcome, or at least for some of the Afrikaners.2,4,14,28


4.1.2 History and its joker surprises


History, thankfully, have also had unexpected, even strange outcomes. The fortunes and misfortunes of nations have in some instances changed even after they had fled or failed, totally contradicting the rules of trustworthy predictions (and even sound thinking!). The impact of extreme world disasters, like earthquakes, pests, new wars, immense famine, new mass migrations, just to mention a few, have in the past had quick and profound impacts on the power of mighty empires or have caused undervalued, small nations’ fate to take a turn for the better. To a certain extent, the Afrikaners experienced this kind of luck after the devastating Second Anglo Boer War. The possibility is there that today’s Afrikaners can be lucky again, even though they are such a small indigenous racial group. However, the chances are slim.3,14,24,28


History shows that the unexpected joker surprises sometimes result from the incorporation of a subordinate group (loser/victim) into the social and political life of the ruler (suppressor/winner). Often this takes place at the beginning of the new regime’s take over, other times later on as the new regime (winner) becomes established and as they lose their insecurity or resentment of the subordinate or their need for revenge. Two primary factors drive this joker surprise: first, a positive change in the suppressor/ruler in that he no longer see the subordinate as a danger to his reign; and secondly, the subordinates/losers reflecting excellent abilities that the ruler urgently needs to make a country successful.


Positive changes in governments of places that previously experienced racial and ethnic conflict that ultimately lead to sound non-discriminative management and rule and the inclusion of the “loser” sometimes contradicts the established and traditional findings on the outcomes of genocide or racial conflict as happened in Europe with the cold blooded killing of ethnic minorities with the  millions of murders of “colonial” Jews and other groups under Hitler and Stalin. In Southern Africa, Namibia is an example of such a successful transition to a race-free democracy, starting immediately after independence. South Africa, after initially being a reconciliation success, failed to include the Afrikaners as a political group in the government and started to force not only the Afrikaners out of political empowerment, but to inspire further Black discrimination against them. The expulsion of the Afrikaners was not because they were incompetent politicians or substandard citizens, but purely as a direct outcome of the ANC-regime’s hate for the Afrikaners’ apartheid (and possible masked racism). This negative view of Afrikaners is gaining ground as the present-day political rhetoric and actions of the ANC elite shows.14,25,29

There are undoubtedly many factors that favour the Afrikaner as a group that may help them come back into South African history as a prominent role player in a future governmental life. Despite their descent, they are closer to Africa than to Europe after 350 years. They have become indigenous.4,12 Afrikaners have gradually been cemented into an African indigenous heritage (although clouded by apartheid). The Afrikaner has great talent, experience and political intelligence, making him capable at many levels. Research on the pattern of ousting the losers from politics shows specific that jealousy and inferiority on the side of the winner are often the causes. The ANC elite show signs of this syndrome with their ousting of Afrikaners from the South African political life, as well as their hostile labels of “colonists,” “exploiters,” ”thieves.” It seems many of the negative reactions are directly linked to the Afrikaner’s personal talents that make him capable, like leadership, integrity, being hardworking, honesty, strategic thinking and independence. It was through the Afrikaner’s self-styled and to a great extent selfish guardianship and separate development initiative during his political reign (much of its positive impact is being ignored, denied and detested today) that the Black civilisation was helped to overtake the White civilisation in 1994, making the Blacks the new guardians of the South African society. This is a normal development that Hertzog already indicated in the 1920s. He warned the Afrikaner to take note and to be prepared if they develop and promote the Black civilisation unselfishly and wrong planned.3,4,12,30,31


Afrikaners and their forefathers have made and are still making tremendous contributions to the country, although now outside the ANC’s main stream of politics. They have the potential to do it again inside the political context in the future if they are offered the opportunity by a wise Black regime. The majority of Afrikaners deserve respect and acknowledgement, something the ANC regime and its leadership have thus far, for obvious opportunistic and self-centred reasons, refused to give. The Afrikaner does have a bond with South Africa. It was with great honesty that Nelson Mandela said that the Afrikaner is through blood and tears, the same as all the other indigenous nations, part of South Africa.32


One possibility for the Afrikaner to gain a place to participate in the country is the predicted fall of the ANC. Some political research indicates that there would be a new ruler in 2024, while others indicate the possible end of the ANC government by 2019. This can bring surprising changes to the South African political landscape.22,33-36


Even though the DA will in all probability be a majority Black party in the near future, they will surely be much more lenient and friendly in its attitude and treatment of the individual indigenous Afrikaner as a political companion. In this political context it must be emphasised that the new South Africa still holds many opportunities for Afrikaners, especially if the Black ruler of the day is positive about them. There can still be a surprise under the present ANC-regime. History sometimes surprises everyone.36-38


4.1.3 History and the biblical destiny of the Afrikaner


There is an interrelationship between the Afrikaners’ history and the Afrikaners’ biblical belief system, sometimes with a vicious undertone. Some Afrikaners believe that they are in some way “a chosen people,” placed in South Africa to Christianise the Blacks and to spread European culture here. Those who adhere to this belief think that since this is their “God-given destiny,” He will take care of them in the long run. This thinking dates back to the late 1790s and was further cultivated by the proto-Afrikaners and Afrikaner churches like the DRC. It was propagated and strengthened from 1948 by the leadership of the NP, AB and the DRC as part of their nation-building efforts and attempts to gain political power. Closely intertwined with this dogma is also the belief in the God-given visions of Siener van Rensburg. Many Afrikaners considered him a prophet. Van Rensburg, a Transvaal burgher who fought against the British, alleged to have made some “successful” predictions about the outcomes of battles during the Second Anglo Boer War and about the fact that the Boers would lose the war. Some believe that he also predicted the “suffering” of the Afrikaners under the present-day ANC regime. Fascination with his views increased in the last ten years of Afrikaner rule. 26, 27


The relevance of his prophecies for today lies in the fact that he allegedly prophesied that there would be a Black regime that would rule South Africa for a while, but as soon the Afrikaners make peace with God and rid themselves of non-Afrikaner thinking, influences and intermingling, God will put them in charge of South Africa again. Afrikaners are required in terms of his dogma to stay calm and trust God at all times. Van Rensburg’s visions of the future South Africa and the Afrikaners’ prominent role in it carry strong support among some Afrikaners, especially the elderly from the North of the country and a new contingent of Afrikaners who feel side-lined and helpless in the present political context.26, 27


These prophecies are illogical, selective of peoples and nations and seldom realizes. At this time they are misleading, creating not only false hope, but also racial conflict. The White population is dwindling when compared to the Black population (at present they make up 8% of the population, while in 20 years’ time this percentage will be between 4% and 6%, and in 60 years, 1% at most). If a war or disaster is the reason for Van Rensburg’s coming change, it will affect both Blacks and Whites equally. If a White government comes into power again, racial discrimination would start all over again. According to the Herodotus Rules, the Afrikaner would take the place of the victim in time and the positions will reverse again. The Van Rensburg predictions, if they ever realize, are a recipe for disaster and large-scale genocide and murder of a powerless Afrikaner people in a future South Africa. This is an outcome that will hopefully never realize. Thankfully, the success of such an outcome is only one in 30 million and limited to and promoted by a small fraction of Afrikaners.26,27, 39



4.1.4 The donkey’s carrot and Afrikaners’ false utopias


Since 1994 some Afrikaners have held to the belief that history will only be merciful on the Afrikaner if they themselves are constructive and participate in their own fate. Three factors play a role in this. Outdated emotionally driven group conformity and group management


There seems to be a concerted effort by some individuals to keep Afrikaners together as a group and to strengthen them with some measure of political impact in the country. They are trying to motivate Afrikaners to stay (more than 1.2 million Afrikaners have left South Africa since 1994, and this process is gaining ground among the youth). The efforts to create Afrikaner solidarity is partly based on the belief that they are still a group and that they should identify leaders who can lead them to an Afrikaner utopia. However, these efforts are in vain, since many Afrikaners are distrustful of “Afrikaner leaders.” They are wary of anything apartheid-flavoured and they are comfortable enough in post-1994 to steer clear of any talk of an Afrikaner utopia.41-47 The elderly, the poor and outdated Afrikaner nationalism


Data show that the migration for great groups of people (even from European origin) to Europe and other Western countries are becoming unfeasible, as the current resistance and hostility to Islamic refugees all over Europe shows. Any further large exodus of Afrikaners will be impossible. Even if the was opportunity, the ageing of Afrikaners makes them less acceptable in other European countries (at the moment the 60 years and older age group makes up 22% of the total White population, while the age group over 16 years makes up another 60%. The average age of Afrikaners is increasing fast, leaving the possibility of a total Afrikaner population of less than one million in 30 years). Obviously the older and poorer Afrikaners would be a burden on another country, so they are unwelcome. These elders are best off keeping their capital in the country and living their lives here. Data also confirm that there are still many opportunities for educated and eager Afrikaner youths to make money and to start a life in the new South Africa, but then outside the nationalist Afrikaner political and cultural doctrine and domain. Many Afrikaners are doing extraordinary well after 1994 financially speaking; so much so that their income increased much more from 1994 to 2014 than in the 18 years after 1910. From a short-term financial perspective South Africa is a future utopia for the older and the poorer Afrikaners. A point of great concern is the hidden efforts of self-made opportunistic Afrikaner leaders to mobilize these ordinary Afrikaners as an opposing force to Black rule. The financial abilities of these persons, like pension funds and other investments, also draw the attention of opportunistic Afrikaners and their enterprises. The rekindling of a strong nationalist Afrikaner movement has thus far been of minimal success, even among the elderly. This group has become concerned with their day-to-day existence, a far cry from the tribal concerns of years ago. The only link to their nationalist past that they are upholding is their Afrikaner churches, especially the DRC, which itself has suffered a decline in numbers.41-47 Present-day saviours and rescuers of the Afrikaners▼


The third group that offers visions of an Afrikaner utopia is the old right-wing groups, often inclusive of opportunistic Afrikaner businessmen. Sometimes the intentions are nothing less than self-enrichment. Their rhetoric aims to make Afrikaners feel endangered by speaking of topics like the danger in which Afrikaner educational institutions (schools and universities) are, farm murders, political discrimination, the capture of farms and of White capital, radical economic transformation, etc. Many of these allegations have some semblance of truth, but are stretched to fuel emotion. The “Black danger” warning is prominent, while the conservation of the Afrikaner’s self-rule is a primary topic (with the focus on an Afrikaner state or region, consisting of exclusive Afrikaner communities with their own educational institutions, etc.). Many of these private enterprises, promoting themselves as able to assist the Afrikaners with regaining their “old rights and privileges,” are run by former Afrikaner leaders, portraying themselves as sincere businesses and servants of the Afrikaner cause. At the moment many of these saviours and rescuers of the Afrikaners (Afrikaner white helmets?) are central role players in that they offer bursaries and support education and legal defence for Afrikaners’ constitutional rights. There are thankfully also a contingent of persons and enterprises of integrity active in these areas. This group have become the central role players in the political, cultural, economical and personal “rehabilitation” of ordinary Afrikaners. They are the “pilots” who can steer Afrikaners back to their former glory. Their well-oiled marketing strategies and their impact on a certain component of ordinary Afrikaners through services and products should be reflected on. This is done in the next section.


In terms of the activities, agendas, intentions and rhetoric reflected by some of these pro-Afrikaner activist groups, it is crucial that Afrikaners make sure who these people and their enterprises are. Afrikaners must learn to separate the wheat and chaff. Modern Afrikaners cannot allow their minds to be polluted by any opportunistic fellow Afrikaners who bought into the ANC dogma of nepotism and corruption, or by self-centred and greedy Afrikaners and institutions who want to mislead the Afrikaners with false propaganda and short-sighted information about the Afrikaners’ future. Even the Afrikaner media still tries to persuade Afrikaners of a good future in South Africa on the one hand and of the hostile actions that threaten Afrikaners on the other. Many of these editorials and articles lack knowledge and wisdom with respect to the “Afrikaner question.” Some also lacks knowledge of economical planning and the functioning of the country, world, genocide, etc. Most of all, they seem to be out of touch with the thinking of modern Afrikaners, young and old. Their advice and guidelines on the future for Afrikaners (as individuals and as groups) – inside or outside the country – lack the needed depth and soundness to inspire wise decisions and seems to be driven by emotional rhetoric. The Afrikaners must start to think beyond this mass propaganda and false ideas of “an everlasting happy new South Africa” or “durable support to solve the Afrikaners mistreatment by the ANC.” Nor must they blindly accept and support schemes to better themselves while in reality they are enriching only these individuals and groups at their own peril.48-60, 64


Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5. Incoming of exclusive private school and tertiary education▼


Education is of great importance for the Afrikaners. This has been the case from the 1930s when Afrikaners suffered devastating poverty due to prolonged droughts and poor markets. The Afrikaners were mainly farmers, so this affected a large portion of the group. In 1936, 41.2% Afrikaners were in agricultural occupations, compared to 27.5% in White collar occupations (with 31.3% in blue collar and other manual occupations). These numbers have changed dramatically over the next 41 years. In 1977, only 8.1% Afrikaners were still in agricultural occupations (a decline of 23.2%), with 65.2% in White collar occupations (an increase of 37.7%). The percentage for blue collar and other manual occupations in 1977 was 26.7% (a decline of 4.6%).4


With the arrival of the ANC on the scene in 1994 and the many problems around school and tertiary education that followed, education again became a main point of concern for many Afrikaners. While they argue that the quality of education has dropped, concerns also included racially mixed institutions, being allowed Christian schools and Afrikaans as language of instruction. Many Afrikaners are unwilling to send their children to open schools where there is racial mixing, class divisions are breaking-down and non-racism has become the priority. They share the concerns that PW Botha aired when opening Parliament on 6 May 1987: the “protection of individual rights”, the “protection of minority rights”, the “protection of minority groups” and the “gap between the first world (Afrikaner) and the third world (Blacks) and the lowering of standards”. These “protections” valued by Botha for many Afrikaners became legitimate claims based on guarantees by the NP-regime before its fall. They in effect want exclusive Afrikaner residential areas, lifestyle and rights, as in the pre-1994 South Africa, far removed from the indigenous realities of South Africa.8


Education has become a hot issue in White-Black relations. Some Afrikaners want “better”, alternative education to fit the “exclusive standards” of education required by some of them. Private education has become an attractive alternative for Afrikaners who can afford it. It has become a gold mine for educators and businessmen who care to entertain these notions, which are often accompanied by racist attitudes. For many Afrikaners private education is a miracle, for others it seems to be a nightmare. The true consequences of private education could only be determined two to three decades from now, but at present there is much to worry about.

Many South African private organizations pride themselves in being able to save the Afrikaners with the help of linked organizations. One group of businesses, which primarily focus on Afrikaners as clients, is reflecting 350 000 members (and one million indirect members when the family members of their members are included!). Regarding tertiary education, their advertising literature mentions that they have assisted more than 5 000 students at a cost of R73 million; that their student fund is R100 million strong and that they plan to expand their scholarship fund to R160 million by 2020; that they are currently training 1 000 artisans and plan to train 1 500 artisans annually in the near future; that they have invested R50 million each in two separate training institutes; that they intend to invest R735 million in security structures, municipal services and schools by 2020 and that they aim to establish an Afrikaner hostel at one of the public universities. At the same time, they are speaking of the establishment of a private “university” for Afrikaners comparable to Yale! As can be seen from their marketing strategy, most of their actions or products are “planned,” or “will be established,” meaning simply that they are not in existence. Promises are not facts and truths, and Afrikaners must take note of this.49,51,54,55,57,60-63


First, the above group’s 350 000 members is misleading for the purposes of true education empowerment. Most of their members belong to their labour union, insurance division, etc. A very low percentage of these members can be useful in their education network to create a significant Afrikaner tertiary institution, exclusively for Afrikaners. Their insignificant present student numbers, when compared with that of the public universities’ numbers, confirms this. As said, to present intentions and future planning as realities, is misleading and cannot be taken as a viable and sustainable guarantee. Second, their 350 000 members (hopefully ordinary Afrikaners?) represent less than 13% of the total Afrikaner population (2.7 million) presently living in South Africa, making even their 350 000 memberships insignificant. Eighty seven per cent (87%) of Afrikaners do not make use of any of their general services, with many more ignoring their academic activities. Third, regarding the status of their “university,” they failed to inform the public that as a “private tertiary institute” they are not allowed to use the title “university” in South Africa, although they can offer degree programmes, but only if they meet the prescribed standards and are registered with and controlled by the various statutory bodies. Fourth, their vague reference to the possible training of healthcare professionals in the future is nothing less than fantasy. This kind of training, which includes expensive equipment, training facilities, staff and overseeing, is unaffordable without immense infrastructure and enormous government subsidies (something that private tertiary institutions do not receive and will not receive in the near future).49,51,54,55,57,59-63


Another business group, already active in private school education and functioning as a public company on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), also advertises that they are going to open various “universities” in the near future as a public company, also to be registered on the JSE. It is assumed that they will, besides Afrikaners, also cater for other races as students to make it viable and sustainable. Their intention is to offer various degree programmes to 40 000 students initially, but to enlarge the student numbers to 100 000.65 As previously said, to present intentions and future planning as realities, is misleading and cannot be taken as a viable and sustainable guarantee.


All these promises, however good the intentions, can do more harm than good given the uncertainty of Afrikaners. It also holds enormous financial risks for shareholders in the long run where these enterprises are register on the JSE to generate funding for their businesses’ development. For Afrikaners who put their savings into such an enterprise in support of the “Afrikaner cause,” the outcome can be catastrophic in the long run. A well-known educational institution that went public in the 1990s after the South African authorities allowed the opening of private institutions to offer degrees and other tertiary qualifications came on the market at R40 a share. When it was delisted as a company in the 2000s, it shares were bought out by the parent company in a rescue-effort for 40 cents a share, reflecting a hundredth of a share’s initial value. Such negative outcomes can and will happen again as the South African financial environment worsens and public education is rehabilitated by a new regime, again offering excellent public education at affordable costs to South Africans. Also, when the promises of private enterprises of large enrolments fail to realize and they don’t show the profit to make these “universities” viable and sustainable businesses, the financial academic outcomes can be devastating for shareholders, as well as students enrolled in good faith.49,51,54-57,59-61,66


Regarding the private tertiary institutions for the sake of Afrikaans and Afrikaners, the dwindling and impoverishing Afrikaners are not able financially to support such a dream in the long run. The limited work opportunities and inclusiveness of the government’s AA, EE and BEE employment policy with respect to all appointments and employments, even Afrikaner private enterprises, makes the chances that these “home trained” Afrikaners will be employed very slim. The leaders of these enterprises failed to tell the Afrikaner public that the Afrikaners are an ageing population who do not need further study and training. They also fail to tell the Afrikaner public that the Afrikaners are in a process of dissolution: it is estimated that in 30 years, there will be less than one million Afrikaners in South Africa (mostly old people), while in 60 years their number will be less than 300 000. In the year 2117, there will be less than 20 000 “pure” Afrikaners left in South Africa. The financial viability and sustainability of these exclusive “Afrikaner universities” are basically zero.41-47


There is no sound basis for comparison of the quality and world ranking of these private and public tertiary institutions. The qualifications offered by these private institutions are not accepted with the same approval as those of the public universities by employers in general. This outcome also has a negative impact on the overseas employment of graduates and on further study. Very few of the graduates from private South African tertiary institutions continue their studies at public South African universities. The argument that the quality of public universities is falling due to the student unrest of the past two years is not accurate. The unrest proved to be temporary and most of the public universities compete well internationally. Besides, education at the public universities is still much less expensive than at the private universities.


Running a single medium-size faculty at a public university costs more or less R50 million a year, while a medium-size university with three campuses that include 26 faculties, costs about R1.3 billion per annum. It is also public knowledge that not a single one of the 26 South African public universities are successful business enterprises that can function without state subsidy, which makes up anywhere between 10% to 90% (average 50%) of the 26 universities’ total annual income. Those who sell a university to the public as a business model that can offer private education to Afrikaners are abusing the naïveté of the public.52-56,59,67-72


What is more, the Constitution of South Africa forbids discrimination on entrance to any universities, private or public, on the basis of race. This means that the planned exclusive “private Afrikaner universities” may not allow only “pure Afrikaners” (meaning Caucasians who speak Afrikaans at home). It will be compelled to allow all students speaking Afrikaans (not necessarily at home). This group numbers more than 13.5 million against the 2.7 million Afrikaners. This can render the “only Afrikaner” exclusiveness null and void. This knowledge is kept from the public and shareholder by the Afrikaner saviours with their private Afrikaner tertiary institutions registered on the JSE.52-56,59,67-72


Regarding private schooling, this element of education has also found approval with the Afrikaners, although it seems that the educational environment is less racially orientated, with some private businesses offering this kind of service. Still, some Afrikaners show great interest in this type of schooling, especially those offering a so-called Christian education where the Black numbers are small. This trend therefore warrants some investigation as well.

In South Africa private schools make up only 4% of all the South African schools and are therefore insignificant role players in education. Although there was a significant growth in this sector in the last 10 years, the bulk of pupils are still concentrated in public schools, which accommodate more than 12 million pupils in 23 700 schools countrywide. Private schools seem popular as a result of the temporary instability in the public school education, which often lack quality education and management. Afrikaners from the middle class (a group that is growing as rich Afrikaners earn less income) and its higher income earners are making use of these institutions. From a financial perspective, these schools are generally expensive, with fees varying between R15 000 and R21 000 per month. These fees make it unaffordable for most South Africans, although some of the schools situated in the rural areas still offer enrolment at lower fees.73


These schools can be attractive for the Afrikaners, especially those parents who believe private schools offer a better education and an environment that is more conducive to learning, additional resources, better policies and practices and who are of course satisfied with their hidden racial discrimination. The prominent question is: are these schools a stable factor in the future of the Afrikaners’ education and are they the saviours of Afrikaner education? Are Afrikaner children really benefitting from it? As a guideline one can use the statistics of one of these groups for 2017. This group has increased pupil numbers by a compound growth rate of 31% since 2012, with revenue and earnings increasing at a rate of 48% and 83% respectively over the same period. Looking back to 2009 when it joined a large business as partner, its numbers increased from 2 000 pupils to 35 000 in 2015, but it now seems as if enrolment has started to reach saturation. As many as 127 of their present schools are only operating at a 52% capacity.73 Evidence suggests that further expansion plans are just too ambitious. Gumede writes73, p. 8: “…it’s not one of those things the market is going to get excited over because there are hurdles to achieving such target”. This negativity about the future of private schools is confirmed by other sources. This draws the attention to one of these groups declaration that tit plan to establish and run 500 schools in South Africa by 2030. The attainment of this target is doubtful (in terms of financial viability and sustainability given the fact that private capital must fund it), especially in light of the poor financial environment into which the country is moving. There is a relatively small middle class, the country’s credit ratings have been downgraded, poor economic outlook, low business and personal confidence in the government, sub-zero growth are prominent. One of these education groups  constantly have to back up development, not from net profits delivered by the schools or from the pockets of the owners themselves, but from annual rights (This group has had six rights offers in six years, yet  still do not pay dividends to shareholders as a result of “reinvesting” of profits).73


The fact that some of the private education service deliverers are not using their own money to run these enterprises but make use of enormous public money (via the JSE, etc.) to drive their businesses, leaves a question mark on stable profits from the existing schools as a direct source of income. Why do these schools not generate enough capital to drive on their own growth in terms of pupils and more schools? Profit and dividend payment to shareholders based on the delivery of affordable education does not seems to be viable and sustainable.73 Promises of future performance cannot and should not be seen as guarantees. It is a marketing strategy to attract attention, nothing more. The Afrikaners who support these ventures with their hard-earned capital to secure their children an “Afrikaner education” at the secondary or tertiary levels must take note of this.


It is clear from the above it will be difficult for many Afrikaners to make use of private schools in future because the fees of these schools will increase, while the income of the parents is on the decrease. An eagerly parent who wants to make a contribution to the continuation of private schools by investing money into the holding companies, should take note of the constant lack of significant net profit generated by some of these schools themselves and the constant use of rights to do development. Constant development (reinvestment) leads to “over-development” and the “over-sourcing” of finance via the JSE from the public that stretches beyond the true value of some education enterprises. This can lead to a vicious cycle of “money-sourcing,” for reasons other than pure education delivery. Private school education is, like private tertiary education, not always the utopia offered too many ordinary Afrikaners, from promises of exclusive “White” education, to promises of financial gain.


The initiatives for the creation of own-funded private “universities”, schools and related educational businesses are noble ideas and must not be seen at any time as “illegal”, “irregular” or “fraud’. It is individuals and business-groups democratic right to do and practice it and to believe in the virtue of it, as long as they stay inside the law. What is clear is that a line must be drawn between business opportunism which is focussed on every individual, notwithstanding race, religion or status or political orientation in South Africa to make money from by business enterprises versus business initiatives solely focussed in helping the Afrikaners in their unique political, ethnic, racial and cultural dilemma. Here especially are the political confused Afrikaners under radar. With a shrinking Afrikaner population and decreased buying power, exclusion from profitable and sustainable enterprises and professions by a growing policy of AA, EE and BEE, these actions to “save” of Afrikaners are just too little too late. The same is happening here than what happened with the Jews in Germany, Hungary and Poland in the 1940s, namely the selectively disownment of their properties, being kept out of professions, closure of their schools and universities, withdrawal of business rights, limiting their civil and personal lives. Nothing can stop the ANC from making an end to private school and tertiary training in the near future. The worst can still come. The Afrikaners must be informed and not be misled by moneymaking schemes and business opportunists who abuse their emotional and personal unhappiness in present-day South Africa. Public education is still the most viable and preferable for the ordinary Afrikaner. Most important of all, it helps the Afrikaner to enter the South African open society and to accept the indigenous realities of the country. His individuality is here centred, not outdated political, racial and cultural groupings and doctrines or isolation in Afrikaner learning-enclaves. Exclusive private institutions cannot reach this goal.56,68,72,73


Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5. Private enterprises who take on public and legal battles on behalf of Afrikaners▼


Frustrated Afrikaners are at the moment limited to court cases, appeals to the Constitutional Court and moaning in the few struggling Afrikaans newspapers still publishing. Many of these unhappy and deserted Afrikaners are putting their last hopes, trust and money, often in vain, into various “organisations for Afrikaners” to repair their lost political, economical, social and civil rights. In all honesty, these organizations do not have the real political power, know-how and finances to restore the Afrikaners’ dignity and rights in full, or even have the stamina themselves to outlive the Afrikaners’ daily growing problems.56,57,74-84


A profile analysis of the two largest of the private enterprises involved in the “Afrikaner cause” reflect that they have approximately 170 000 supporters and approximately 350 000 members respectively. These two, to a certain extent, self-styled “Afrikaner saving bodies,” how humble and honest their intentions may be, have struggled to attract more than between 5% and 13% of the total Afrikaner population since 1994. One of these bodies’ Afrikaner support has gone down from 600 000 votes in 1994 to only 166 000 in 2014, reflecting a decline of nearly 70% in 20 years. The prominent nationalist Afrikaner right-wing organizations that promised the freeing of the Afrikaner from Black rule after 1994, have all but disappeared.60,74,85


Besides the two organizations referred to above, various other smaller organizations and initiatives representing the interests of today’s “lost” Afrikaners surface from time to time. Some of these organizations target the Afrikaners’ religiosity. However much these organizations, initiatives, leaders and “prophets” like to present themselves as saviours, their own life-span as service deliverers are at most ten years. They are superficial, directionless, not viable or sustainable in the new South Africa. Second, some of these “saviours” are intentionally (seeing that some of the leaders themselves make alarm that the Afrikaners are in a process of dissolution) not informing their uninformed followers that there will be only between 300 000 and 1 million Afrikaners left in South Africa in 30 to 60 years (in a century it can be less than 20 000 “pure” Afrikaners). This makes the “pure” Afrikaners as a dynamic and profitable entity to generate income through membership and donations for all these initiatives, insignificant. Their rescue efforts are already doomed. Efforts to mobilize Afrikaner positively to accept the new South Africa unconditionally, to discard apartheid and racial discrimination fully are absent from these various initiatives. All that many of these “saviour” initiatives do is to give false hope of a “new Afrikaner South Africa.” They often just strengthen outdated apartheid and racial discriminations and negative political attitudes in the minds of confused and directionless Afrikaners, making their future adaptation to a non-racial society basically impossible.20,60,70,74,83,85,87-91


The actions and declarations of these various organizations that have emerged since 1994 with their sympathy for the “Afrikaner cause” through court actions and other public rescue-actions on behalf of the ordinary Afrikaners are also reflected in public publications. It must be clear that these organizations in general are not non-profit organizations, but are often trade unions that are constantly marketing themselves as the front-line fighters for a specific cause: Afrikaner rights and the Afrikaner’s future. Their main aims are to assure member enrolments, member fees and thus a constant income for the union’s staff salaries and benefits. Public statements that these organizations currently have more than 30 affirmative action cases against the state pending, that they win nearly 90% of their court cases, that they handle 400 000 work-related enquiries annually, that they are involved in 1 200 legal disputes and court actions at any given time and that they are even making presentations to the United Nation on behalf of the Afrikaner, bare evidence of their excellent marketing policies. All these efforts cost money and ask immense input from the organizations, but ultimately serve to attract more support, more members and more income. They have offices to maintain, as well as the salaries, pensions and medical funds of the “hard-working and sincere” directors, managers and staff involved in these solutions to Afrikaner “injustices.” They offer limited welfare and free services, and in the end all these services are funded by the Afrikaner themselves through membership fees and their donations for the “urgent Afrikaner cause.” Very few Afrikaner organizations offer any free services to the public. They never mention the declining Afrikaner numbers and how little they can do about that. Much of their rhetoric also reflects a strong anti-Black view, troubling racial relations unnecessary. In some cases it seems as if they deliberately seek conflict, and this causes Afrikaners in general to look like they are uncooperative. These actions not only increases hostility, but contributes to moving Afrikaners further away from inclusion in the South African politics.49,51,54,55,57, 59-61, 66, 72


These organizations call on memories of the “Help Each Other”-initiative of 1915 which led to the later founding of various Afrikaner financial institutions. However, the comparison is misleading and constitutes manipulation to recruit more Afrikaners and their hard-earned savings into often doomed financial enterprises. The Afrikaners’ successes of the past can never be repeated by the present-day Afrikaners, simply because they lack apartheid’s favour, NP state capture and Afrikaner radical economical transformation by the NP, as well as the nationalistic Afrikaner doctrine and unity that drove Afrikaners in their previous crises and planning.50,52-54,5658,66,77


The above future utopias offered to the naive and sometime desperate Afrikaners, spells only disaster. These efforts are short-termed and cannot grow into anything substantial. It only furthers and strengthens the Afrikaner’s negative racial attitudes, obstructs transformation, creates false ideas about his individual constitutional and other personal rights and slows down his successfully absorption into the new South Africa. The useless continuation of court cases against the state (some of the organizations have gone so far as establishing a prosecution authority) to protect “individual Afrikaners’ constitutional rights,” etc., is nothing more than public gimmicks to recruit more members and generate more income for these Afrikaner institutions. Since these efforts increase hostility, they do not always serve the Afrikaners who want to stay in South Africa. Afrikaners, either as individuals or as a group, must remember that they can no longer hide behind outdated Afrikaner institutions that promise unsustainable futures. It is foolish to give these “saviours” and “rescuers” a mandate to manage Afrikaner interests. The Afrikaners did this with the NP, AB and the DRC in the past, and it caused the present chaos. There is no place for isolation in modern society, not for the individual, the group or the country. This is applicable to the individual Afrikaner too. Chances are that many of these noisy organizations will go down at the same speed and with as little of a bang as the NP did.50, 56, 57, 59, 60, 70


To-day’s Afrikaners do not need again the exclusive Afrikaner education, economic and cultural volk- institutions from their past. Neither do they need the input of outdated and self-righteous leaders from the old NP-AB alliance to guide and uplift them. They have their quota of them in the past. Most Afrikaners are now in individual growth, geopolitically in transit, or, as the writer Breyten Breytenbach describes them: “people in the middle world”; people able to think more and more for them selves, independent from the misleading doctrine of Afrikaner nationalism. Indeed, the Afrikaner is seeking a new identity, totally unknown at this stage.50,56,57,59,60,70,92-95


Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5.


4.1.5 The rekindling of the Boer homeland thinking


Many of the organizations alluded to above do not answer the question of what kind of future they see for the Afrikaner in South Africa. Do they see this future inside or outside South Africa? What will happen to the small group of Afrikaners left 60 years from now? Where will they live or where will they go?


The idea of a Boer homeland is still alive among some Afrikaners. They see the cultural and racial diversity of South Africa as a good reason to restart homelands. The focus is the unification of certain similar groups who are concentrated in specific regions or areas. The argument is that the creation of homelands in areas with mono-cultural economical structures, racial and ethnic composition, and development histories, has occurred world-wide and can also happen in the future South Africa. Modern-day Italy, Belgium, the UK and The Netherlands are offered by these Afrikaner propagandists as good examples of self-rule. It is also argued that Brexit, where Britain preferred to regain its independence from the European Union, as well as the fight for independence from the British by the Scots, shows the legal possibility of cancelling unifications when a specific group’s interest, like democracy, unique identity and finance are endangered. Afrikaanses in the Western Cape, supported by Afrikaners, are playing with the idea of breaking away in the Western Cape.40,92-94


Frans Cronje92, director of the South African Institute of Race Relations, has referred to the possible division of the new South Africa into various independent states, mainly on the basis of economical sustainability and viability, although ethnicity and race differences can also be role players at the end. Cronje is of the opinion that over the last 100 years, not a single South African government could successfully governed the “Union of South Africans” in a prosperous and peacefully way. He argues further that the present forcing of different races and ethnicities into one South African state is indeed a huge failure. The Zulus, as a specific Black tribe, would be the first to gain independence as the ANC has failed to stay in power in that region and the Zulu-component in the government is losing their power and are being pushed into sub-ordinance by the Xhosas and others. There is also at present a racial cleansing of non-Zulus underway in Zulu regions making a “pure” racial Zulu state even more of a reality. An Afrikaner homeland is also part of this thinking, inspiring the idea of an utopia in waiting for Afrikaners in the new South Africa.33,34,36,92


Clearly, some Afrikaner did not learn anything from the AWB efforts in the 1990s to establish an independent Boer state. The average Afrikaner is becoming poorer and poorer and their dreams are being shattered, while their realities are becoming harsher and their opportunities are becoming fewer and fewer each day. The Constitution is on occasion dragged into this “Afrikaner fight for justice” without much sound argument. The Constitution is not meant for abuse by the citizens of South Africa. This includes the Afrikaner’s search for justice for the alleged wrongs done to him after 1994.50,51,54-57, 59,-61,66


There seems to be only one constructive route, and that is as individuals inside an Afrikaanse grouping inside greater South Africa, free from the anti-transformational sentiment of the right wing and “laager” Afrikaners who are being misled and exited by all kinds of prophets and visionaries. It would be wise for Afrikaners to pay their medical fund, pension contributions and taxes every month, but not a sent to any organization or individuals that offer to act on their behalf or to fight for their rights. They are wasting their money and time. Most of all, in doing so they surrender to opportunists!

4.1.6 The post-1994 cultural, social and political unchaining of many Afrikaners▼

After 1948 and under the influence of the NP-government many of the ordinary nationalist Afrikaners thought of themselves as the anointed nation who was sent to Africa by God to Christianise the Blacks. Prominent were the NP-AB dogma of White supremacy and the internalized belief that Afrikaners would always have the power to rule South Africa. They never thought that it could all collapse. When the NP-AB alliance suddenly collapsed in 1994, many ordinary Afrikaners were still too naive to understand that they, with the approval of the NP-AB-ANC leadership, will slowly be sacrificed within ten years: the proverbial lamb to be slaughtered on the ANC’s altar of revenge. Since the early 2000s the ordinary Afrikaners were not only naive on what to expect in a new South Africa and unprepared for the immense political, social, economic and personal changes awaiting, but were also totally confused about what their position in the new dispensation is and about the appropriate behaviours for new environment.8


It is not surprising that many Afrikaners feel so desolated. Many experience the feeling that they have ceased being an Afrikaner and the Afrikaner as an entity with a language has been lost.95


The Afrikaner is still alive, but it is true that they have lost all power. Black rule has become final. What is also clear is that the new ruler will apply more and more strong-arm tactics to impoverish, isolate and where possible, nullify the Afrikaner as a citizen.1,95


The hard fact is that Afrikaners are still citizens and that the ruler should take note of this. It is therefore of utmost importance for Afrikaners to find solutions to secure their existence and to avert the danger of dissolution. There is evidence that Afrikaners have already started to think outside their indoctrinated Afrikaner nationalism and are starting to try out solutions to adapt to their political dilemmas in the new South Africa.95


Afrikaner dependence on spiritual-political-cultural leaders and mentors is evident from the political and personal disorientation of NP-members as a group after the1970s on the deaths of their dominant leaders DF Malan, JG Strydom and HF Verwoerd. After 1994 they started to split into small, less rigid and less extreme Afrikaner cultural, political and financial bodies. However, the Afrikaner group’s disintegration does not mean that the internalized beliefs, values and intentions on racial differences have disappeared too. These views have become fixed and independent dispositions in the mindsets of the nationalist Afrikaners, guiding many of them still today.2,4,10-12,17,21,22


Since the late-1990s many nationalist Afrikaners, basically leaderless and politically disorientated, have become individual and reactive about their well-being. They seek individual economical and social empowerment, outside the growing corrupted NP and AB family tree and its extreme racial policy. Established internalized beliefs, customs and traditions are increasingly being abandoned without the traditional compensations of the past to reinforce it. Once an unstoppable and mighty political, cultural, economic and emotional bullying giant under the guardianship of the NP and AB, the nationalist Afrikaners are now orphaned and totally frail. In 23 years Afrikaner nationalism has gone from a hyper-state into a hypo-state.


Most of the current 2.7 million Afrikaners, of whom many already hold different political and cultural views than their parents, are driven in their daily lives and future planning by their own individual needs. More or less 2.3 million ordinary Afrikaners are ignoring the various exclusive “saviours” and “rescuers” and the various bodies that want to take up the Afrikaner cause.


Most Afrikaners clearly see no place for the racist right wing politics of old. The new independent Afrikaners have undoubtedly drawn a line between themselves and the hard-line nationalist Afrikaners. The de-internalization of wrong believes on racism and the dissociation from false “saviours” has become essential for the Afrikaners’ survival.


Many Afrikaners have written off their racist pasts and are doing their level best to adjust to the new South Africa on an individual basis. Many of these Afrikaners regret their trust in the different apartheid governments and their adherence to those doctrines. This being the case, would it not have been better if they put their loyalties and votes on the side of the ANC in 1994?


To reach the ideal outcome of non-racism is not so easy, as fixed mindsets are not easily pliable. This fact is reflected today by some Afrikaners’ who still underwrite negative racial attitudes and behaviours against Blacks, although mostly not openly.


Cross-references: see Part 5, subdivision 4.2.7.



Boon1, p. 11 enthusiastically wrote 21 years ago about a free South Africa: “South Africa has been forced in conflict but also in human triumph. It is a place of multiple cultures – each with their dramatic and proud histories and powerful heritages. But culture is not static nor is it an isolated thing. It is dynamic and constantly influenced by other groups’ thoughts, philosophies and behaviours”. And this South Africa came in 1994, making dramatic chances to its multiple cultures and to the mindsets of its various peoples.

The Afrikaners were put before the reality of dynamic and constant changes in their culture by the 1994 dispensation. They resisted being assimilated into the country’s multiple cultures or assimilating South Africa’s multiple cultures into theirs for 350 years. The 1994 dispensation forced them out of their cocoon of assumed White supremacy and Afrikaner uniqueness and their ignorance of the indigenous realities of South Africa. They have lost their fear for the other South African groups’ thoughts, philosophies and behaviours. Undoubtedly many of their political conflicts have changed to human triumphs. Their previously rigid refusals to understand, accept and appropriate the indigenous realities of South Africa have started to wane. Being betrayed by the NP-AB leadership after the ANC came to power, have forced them out of group conformity and they have started thinking independently. Most of the ordinary Afrikaners do not need “saviours” and “rescuers” to steer their future: not the NP-AB-DRC leadership of the past or the new post-1994 corps of “Afrikaner white helmets”; leaders and enterprises with their “we are here to serve exclusively Afrikaners.” They can only harm Afrikaners’ future with their intentions and efforts to create a “double government” for South Africa (with their efforts to institute and to reserve “apartheid” for the “benefit” of some racial Afrikaners again). Ordinary Afrikaners can thankfully at last think, plan and decide for themselves, and some are doing it excellently.

Some Afrikaners prepared themselves long ago to deal with the threats and challenges of the new South Africa. Other unfortunately did not.

An in-depth understanding of their present and future situation is urgently needed so that they can get out of their present political, social, economical and emotional insecurities.


The pertinent question at this stage is: Are routes really available to assure success? Can ordinary Afrikaners make the year 2017 the year of thinking, decisions and actions? They can only do this if they know the opportunities, challenges, risks, threats and dangers awaiting them in the future. Part 7 (Article 7) of the series offers such a reflection on options and opportunities.


Whether they plan to make a future in South Africa or not, is it of great importance that the ordinary Afrikaner takes to heart in the wisdom of J C Smuts, the eminent South African statesman and scholar, when he said that South Africa was a place in which neither the best nor the worst has happened96. For the Afrikaner, moving into the new South Africa, these words can be the wisest he ever heard. The negativisms they experienced since 1994 in South Africa could have been worse; it was not the worst and will not become worse. The apartheid euphoria until 1994 was false. His future experiences in South Africa can be positive.  What does the Afrikaner want more than a true South Africa? The Mozambican-Portuguese settled successfully in the new South Africa. Why can the indigenous Afrikaners not do the same? South Africa is his only homeland.






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Not commissioned. Externally peer reviewed.



The author declares that he has no competing interest.



The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Arts, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.