Monday, April 28, 2014

Born in the 1990s With No Memory of Apartheid

Khothatso Madisa

It saddens me at times when I hear stories of how wonderful it was when people cast their votes for the first time in 1994 when all I can remember is being 3 years-old and playing with sand.

The saddest thing is that I cannot even remember people, not even my parents, coming back home in joyous celebrations  from voting stations. All I remember is that I loved plastic toy cars and I probably spend the whole day imitating the likes of Michael Schumacher.

Maybe its just jealousy speaking since I would have given everything to be in those long queues with the excited masses eager to cast their very first vote. Everything my generation, the generation of 1990s, know about when South Africa found democracy relies solely on what we've seen on the television or heard on radio.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

It's Been 20 Years, But The Racist Mind Still Has Much Work To Do

Siphumelele Zondi

My first memory of apartheid in South Africa was the murder of Chris Hani in 1993, I even barely remember that. At the time my age was in the single digits. I remember my parents watching all news reports about it. I remember his daughters and wife Limpho crying on television. I also remember TV news anchor Noxolo Grootboom crying on television as she was an eye witness who had seen what had happened from her house which was next door to Hani's. I don't remember much else from that day and I didn't really know who Hani was until the day he was brutally murdered. I also remember his massive funeral that made me think that's how big all funerals are supposed to be.As I grew older I obviously learnt who he was and how his murder could have changed South Africa's road to democracy.

A year later I had a conversation with my father. It was the evening of the 26th of April in 1994. My father was preparing to vote for the very first time the following day. I asked him who he would want to win the election. His response was, "Anyone, just not the National Party."