Home World Former South African President Frederik de Klerk dead at 85

Former South African President Frederik de Klerk dead at 85

Former South African President Frederik de Klerk dead at 85

He was the last white South African president: Frederik de Klerk died this Thursday at the age of 85, his founding announced. The former Nobel Peace Prize winner officially ended apartheid and freed icon Nelson Mandela.

He announced on his 85th birthday in March that he was suffering from mesothelioma, a cancer that affects the tissues around the lungs.

In 1993, he was jointly awarded with Nelson Mandela, the Nobel Peace Prize winner, for “his efforts aimed at the peaceful demise of the apartheid regime and for the establishment of a new democratic South Africa”. Twenty years later, FW De Klerk felt that his decision had averted “a catastrophe”, lifting whites out of their “isolation and guilt” and allowing blacks to access “dignity and equality ”.

A reputation as a great curator and yet …

“It is with the greatest sadness that the FW de Klerk Foundation announces the death of former President FW de Klerk peacefully this morning at his home in Fresnaye”, a suburb of Cape Town, its foundation announced in a statement. “He leaves behind his wife Elita, his children Jan and Susan, and his grandchildren,” adds the text written in English and Afrikaans.

With the reputation of a great conservative, De Klerk succeeded President PW Botha in 1989, weakened by a heart attack. On February 2, 1990, this National Party apparatchik, against all odds, declared to Parliament: “The hour for negotiations has arrived”. It announces the unconditional release of ANC leader Nelson Mandela, in prison for 27 years, as well as the lifting of the ban on anti-apartheid parties. This decision truly launched the transition process which led four years later to the organization of the first multiracial elections in the country’s history, won by Mandela.

Born March 18, 1936, De Klerk has always evolved in Afrikaner nationalist circles, descendants of the first European settlers who speak a language derived from Dutch. “He seemed to be the quintessence of the man of the apparatus (…) Nothing in his past seemed to indicate the shadow of a spirit of reform”, wrote Nelson Mandela in his autobiography.

No Comments

Leave A Reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Exit mobile version