Celebrate SA's cultural heritage - Motlanthe

2012-09-24 18:31

Johannesburg - South Africans should celebrate their cultural heritage and acknowledge that the various cultures did not develop in isolation, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe said on Monday.

"We should not enclose what we deem to be our racial or ethnic cultural heritage within the walls of Jericho," he said in a speech prepared for delivery in Upington, in the Northern Cape.

"Culture does over-flow boundaries of time, race and ethnicity since it is the totality of lived reality."

Most South African cultures had influenced each other.

"Even at a time when racial domination was scarring the South African social landscape, cultural influences still managed to find outlets to decant into different social domains."

Evidence of this could be found in modern South African languages, where words from other cultures were often incorporated into another culture's vocabulary.

Heritage Day was for the celebration of individual and collective cultural, traditional or ethnic identities. These elements made South Africa unique in its rich diversity, he said.

Unifying force

"[Heritage Day] seeks to acknowledge our injurious past and the history which diminished the use and status of indigenous languages and free cultural expression.

"Celebrating this heritage, therefore, is part of our efforts of healing the divisions of the past and establishing a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights."

During apartheid, culture was used as a tool of racial oppression, but it was now a unifying force to be celebrated by all.

"If in the past the main enemy was the oppressive system of apartheid that held up the cultural interests of a few people in this country, today the biggest enemy facing our society is the triple problem of poverty, inequality and unemployment," Motlanthe said.

Corruption needed to be eliminated as it undermined the government's ability to deliver services.

"Resources that are meant to improve conditions and lives of our people are diverted by the few, well-positioned individuals to feed their insatiable greed."

Celebrating South Africa's common heritage signalled that the country was leaving behind its divisive past, he said.

"Let us use this day to move towards that vision of national unity and cultural harmony."

  • goyougoodthing - 2012-09-24 18:38

    Quite correct, in fact development only came to Africa late, very late.

      sean.bagley.50 - 2012-09-24 20:20

      At the end of it all we are all still South Africans and that's what matters most.A nation that is made up of different cultures,history,languages,ancestry,etc,but should all still be as ONE. America,the most ethnically diverse nation on earth,all celebrate the 4th of July.Whether they'd be Irish American,Italian American,Chinese American,Afro American,Hispanic American with their own unique festivals ranging from St Patricks day,Cinco De Mayo,Chinese New Year,all American people celebrate each of these without having to be the ethnic Irish,Italian or Chinese in order to do so. South Africa & South Africans needs to become more secure about our individual identity.The ANC government has made it near impossible to define what it means to be South African.Most South Africans are not comfortable with our national identity.We keep speaking of the Zulu Nation,Afrikaner people or Xhosa people,etc,when speaking of other South Africans.South Africa is not as new a country as some makes us out to be,but we need to mature more,define more in that which makes us South African. Ultimately we the human race.Yes we different races,skin colours,nationalities,languages,etc,but we all still human and part of the wider human family.

      seanrossouwslr - 2012-09-24 21:33

      @Phuti. You are so right! I was born in 1992 but I love apartheid so much even though I cannot remember it. Every single white is like this, and to think otherwise is racist. I cannot see a single good thing in a black person, not even those I consider good friends. Why are they friends then? Because my hatred is so great it is blinding and causes me to generalise an entire population. /Sarcasm

      tw2066 - 2012-09-24 22:38

      Well - you see the problem is with guys like phuti there. To these people, their heritage is hate. They hate whites, they hate foreigners, they hate themselves. They need the revolution and the struggle and their demands to jusify their hate. I listened to some of the cr@p today... going on about our "heros". Those heros, like Robert McBride and Andrew Zondi killed innocent people. This makes them murderers - not heros. If this our heritage well you can stick it up your hating ar$e.

      mihaip007 - 2012-09-25 00:56

      how - let's celebrate this "Heritage Day"! As far as I understand the world heritage - it means to INHERIT! Thus let's celebrate the heritage the wonderful news of Corrie's death, sabc not giving a damn about it(can only guess why), the baby left in the streets of zimpopo, the mother killing her daughter and almost killing the other one,....hmmm should I keep going? What a wonderful country we have!

  • Mike Peach Purchase - 2012-09-24 18:45

    Ja right dream on.

  • christelle.james.7 - 2012-09-24 18:46

    How are we suppose to celebrate anything while our country is burning?

      christelle.james.7 - 2012-09-24 18:48

      In saying that, I have to mention to after reading what he has to say, he will not be in JuJu's good books for long.....

      christelle.james.7 - 2012-09-24 19:00

      When last were you there - I have not been. Maybe you can give me directions?

      mihaip007 - 2012-09-24 20:08

      also - I am a programmer: the EASIEST way to avoid comments from people who love to hide their identity under fake profiles LIKE sebenza, would be to check how old is their facebook profile as well as how many friends they have less than 15 would be a no no! But you probably like to have that because there are some anc trolls working FOR anc24!

      john32 - 2012-09-24 20:19

      I will celebrate once the F%^$&ing government puts an end to crime! Tired of hearing just raping, muderering, corruption, greed....%$%^

      john32 - 2012-09-24 20:27

      SA' s culture is disgusting! Let us not fool ourselves by being proud today and then face the same old %^&9 tomorrow. rape, murder, greed. It is time we stand up and do something about it! Just sad news everyday!

      christelle.james.7 - 2012-09-24 20:29

      John, I have contacted somebody whom I dealt with quite a bit in the past (who of course is not at work today) about the idea we spoke about - I should have an indication on Wednesday about legalities etc. I am truly serious about it.

      john32 - 2012-09-24 20:53

      Hey Christelle....great. Me too. :-) Time for all that care about this country to stand up! will message you

  • lacrimosewolf - 2012-09-24 19:05

    Today the biggest enemy facing our society is the triple problem of the tri-partheid alliance who constantly refuses to do the job they were hired to do. So much so that citizens are forced to take matters into their own hands and/or to court. The Alliance consistently ignores the court orders handed down and has developed a pathological mindset in protecting those who steal from us all, trying to numb our minds with ancient history instead of taking action to ensure that we have a viable future.

      tw2066 - 2012-09-24 22:46

      The problem with the trymypatience alliance is that the ANC scews COSATU and vice versa, then business and the wit ou get the kick for it. Its the strangest set up, but in Africa - most things are a bit screwed (and if they are not Zipper Zuma will have a go)

  • lenox.ntlantsana - 2012-09-24 19:16

    Culture is dynamic and so are we as South Africans!

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-09-24 19:20

    Stay at home and enjoy a braai. There is no culture left in this country.

      tw2066 - 2012-09-24 22:46

      LOL and too damned true boet!!

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-09-24 19:24

    We need to bring back volkspele.

      christelle.james.7 - 2012-09-24 19:28

      Whahaha - that is funny Stewart:-)

      lionel.defrontignac - 2012-09-24 19:45

      Right... spending a day throwing jukskei is just as boring as listening to some politician.

      crracker.crackerr - 2012-09-24 19:51

      Jukskei can be quite exciting. And carpet bowls the same. Like Rummy and poker.

      irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-09-24 20:12

      Pity the majority don't know when it's time to loose aspects of one's culture.

      christelle.james.7 - 2012-09-24 20:17

      Jukskei and the aim is a sebenza (which so by the way is a type of knife)Practice boys, practice....!

      sean.bagley.50 - 2012-09-24 21:35

      "volkspele"(LMAO) Yeah right,while you at it,let the civilized world make Zulu stick fighting legit where they cut your skull open with a knobkerrie and such.Loving it,bring it on shall we. No wonder the rest of "South Africa is burning" while others are "suppose to celebrate anything" which is this thing called Heritage Day.

  • Tshepo Gwamanda - 2012-09-24 19:37

    i'm not going to comment...

      irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-09-24 20:12

      Great stuff. Thanks for saving us from reading your drivel written with two chips on your shoulder.

      millionwatts1 - 2012-09-24 20:43

      Hahaha Tshepo that's funny because you just did.

      tw2066 - 2012-09-24 22:47


  • lionel.defrontignac - 2012-09-24 19:45

    Blah Blah Blah - no different to apartheid days when Nat Politicians would make boring speeches in black hombergs - most of us just enjoy the day off - I'm wondering who on earth would want to waste a day listening to politicians - DA or ANC.

      crracker.crackerr - 2012-09-24 19:57

      Or listening to Stalinist crap which I suspect is your emotional milk bottle.

  • hulisani.dimanashango - 2012-09-24 19:48

    our heritage displays the beauty of diverse cultures our rainbow nation defined.

  • Tshepo Gwamanda - 2012-09-24 20:02

    Happy Heritage evening to everybody! - 2012-09-24 20:32


  • irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-09-24 20:11

    Sorry but no matter how hard I try, I cannot respect a bunch of primitive people doing the jiggy jig in animal skins and slaughtering animals to put on their houses to call the ancestors. I'm a bit too developed for that one!

      mbusi.t.nzimande - 2012-09-24 20:17


      Stewart Croucamp - 2012-09-24 20:25

      You don't have to celebrate the culture of black people. Don't forget your own and celebrate that. This is a diverse country with diverse cultures.

      millionwatts1 - 2012-09-24 20:25

      @Irene.buthelezi.1 but its that diversity that makes South Africa the country it is isn't? To denigrate others shows more of your inferiority complex than the sophistication your assume you exude here.

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-09-24 20:52

      Beware of a man with a gleam in his eyes - it may just be the sun shining through the hole in his head.

      seanrossouwslr - 2012-09-24 21:36

      @ Irene. Try not to be so ignorant in public. All our ancestors wore animal skins and dancing around is found in most cultures. Your definition of 'developed' is just your own perspective, your ego thinking those who are different are beneath you.

      B.b. - 2012-09-24 22:37

      Poor Irene,,,where do u come from? Developed? Wow ya u r developed,,,,u were young, having no cleavage,,,etc, but since u r old u've developed,,,,that's true lol lol,,,How can one be developed throught culture? By abandoning what's of good value to their ancestors? Kwaaa pathetic

  • millionwatts1 - 2012-09-24 20:33

    We are a country battling with a serious identity crisis. And its gonna get worse down the line.

  • fort.horseman.7 - 2012-09-24 20:39

    Unfortunately the nly culture i observe in SA is materialsm,hatred,intolerance,greed,ignorance,vanity,disrespect...i dont wana go on,i already have a headache.

  • Andrew Ingram - 2012-09-24 21:27

    they need to open up a like function on this app...

  • fort.horseman.7 - 2012-09-24 21:30

    If the Sheperds who are entrusted with the responsibility and task to lead,and dont practice honour,culture,integrity,duty honesty,righteousnous and values,then wouldnt the flock be astray??

  • julie.j.vanrensburg - 2012-09-24 22:10

    Tonight's TV news showed not a single white cultural celebration like Volkspele, traditional games, etc - all the 'culture' shown was of different black tribes, so our heritage is non-existent as far as 'they' are concerned...

      tw2066 - 2012-09-24 22:48

      Well we know now that tollerance is not in their culture...

      JamesMWood - 2012-09-25 08:12

      It seems the only culture some have is growing between their toes

  • mlu.khan - 2012-09-25 06:42

    SA has a racist culture, perpertuated by these platforms Sad Maybe some prefer things to remain that way, maybe they gain financially, but I like to think its how we were raised. If your parents taught you to respect a person, regardless of your race, you will show respect to all people, even the ones you may not think deserve it. Not because you are stupid, but because you understand that they were not lucky to have parents like yours. And that I think is the SA Culture

  • charmain.nel.7 - 2012-09-25 07:37

    Must everything always go about the BLACKS leave the WHITES TO HAVE A BRAAI DAY BLACKS HAVE HERITAGE DAY WHITE BRAAI DAY we do not interfere with each other as I saw plenty of BLACKS were having BRAAIS

  • gerrit.vanpletzen - 2012-09-25 07:47

    Does that include killing a bull by smothering him to celebrate heritage day? Remember our president's speech about the rule of law, and the Animal protection act, Mr. M.

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