Be Smart About South Africa

Government To Hold State Memorial For FW de Klerk

FILE: Former President FW de Klerk. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN.

The government will host a state memorial service for the last apartheid president, FW de Klerk, at the weekend.

De Klerk died in November at his home in Cape Town, after a long battle with cancer.

He came to power in 1989 under apartheid, however, later became a key figure in the transition to democracy.

He ordered Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, leading to the historic 1994 polls where the anti-apartheid leader became South Africa’s first black president.

In a video shared shortly after De Klerk’s death was announced, he said his views on apartheid had changed significantly since the 1980s.

However, some say it was too little too late.

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