From the archive, SU language debate: My thoughts on complexity and the intersectionality of change at Stellenbosch University

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This article was originally published on 3 September 2015.

The student movement Open Stellenbosch organised a protest on the 1st of September 2015 in Stellenbosch. Lovelyn Chidinma Nwadeyi shares her thoughts.


Lovelyn Chidinma Nwadeyi

Today was hard. It was beautiful to be part of the march today. It was very emotional for me and a few others as well I suppose. I cried a lot today. For Stellenbosch, for our country, for the earth. We are such insensitive beings, and easily remove ourselves or ignore what people just next to us are feeling. It was a tough day though, to watch students from UCT and UWC articulate the needs and struggles of black students better than I think we can articulate it ourselves. It was tough to watch them hijack the movement and make it more about occupying buildings rather than claiming equal spaces. It was tough to see how the university brought in special security operative forces (not USBD) all big black men dressed in black attire, there to protect an enclave of systematically privileged whiteness from a group of [multiracial] peacefully protesting students and staff members. The breaking point for me today was watching them barricade Admin B and then barricade and lock the library doors in front of students as they approached the bib to talk about and contextualise the plaque and statue JS Marais. They locked people in the Bib and they kept the rest of us outside until we dispersed. They closed the bib; they closed Stellenbosch in our faces. And some of management were there and they watched it and let it happen. And they had black men in black everywhere. It was so eerie, as though terrorists had descended on Stellenbosch today, but it was just students calling for change. It was hard. It was uncomfortable. I hated being part of the march because it wasn’t always organised and coherent. But I loved being part of the march because I think I and many other black students and staff members got to claim back a little bit of space and dignity. Black people never come out in such numbers and masses on campus. Today for the first time we were the majority – and the march leaders didn’t care whether us as a majority was of concern to the spaces of privilege around us. For the first time, today I was unconcerned with white feelings.

I sent this text to some friends of mine yesterday, 1 September 2015. After hours and hours of trying to digest what had happened in Stellenbosch, that text message was all I could come up with. It was complex. It was ugly. It was true. Yesterday was not an easy day for anyone. The march was disappointing and exciting in so many ways. Stellenbosch University’s management in Parliament yesterday was exciting and disappointing in so many ways.

“Why are there only men representing the university today, of which one is black and the other is coloured?” one MP asked. “What about the sustainability of promoting Afrikaans and English as equal languages of instruction at SU?” another MP asked. “If Stellenbosch is holding onto Afrikaans in order to cater for the majority of Western Capers who are Afrikaans speaking, then it must acknowledge that most Afrikaans speakers in the Western Cape are rural Coloured people – so what is the university doing to accommodate the coloured child?” a portfolio committee member asked. “Why are all your talks of transformation essentially just about adding more black people to the university? What other measures are in place?”

Parliament was asking the tough questions yesterday, sparing no feelings and refusing to ignore the untouchable sacred cows of language and its interactions with race and power in Stellenbosch University.

It was a difficult day for me because I was both torn and relieved by the march. Staff members from different units were present at the march as well; I walked and talked with some of them and a deep sense of introspection was evident. What happened yesterday in Stellenbosch was extremely necessary, but it was painful, it was uncomfortable and it made participants like me question everything about myself, my time in Stellenbosch and more importantly why I am still here.

For the first time in a long time, I have been confronted with my privilege (albeit limited) in a space like Stellenbosch.

Ek is ‘n swart Nigeriese Suid-Afrikaanse meisie, wat vlot Afrikaans praat en ek is blykbaar een van die suksesvolle studente wat baie geleenthede op Stellenbosch opgeneem het en gebruik het om myself tot hier kon bring. As ek krities oor die universiteit, die bestuur, of die studente en personeel wil praat, kan ek. Want ek kan dit in hulle taal doen. Ek kan dit doen op ‘n manier wat hulle sal aanvaar, op ‘n manier wat vir hulle geldig sal wees.

In practice what this meant was that for the three and a half years I spent at Maties before I left, I never confronted the real elephants in the room. For my undergrad years I facilitated workshops, debates and seminars on race, diversity and multiculturalism. I would sit on university leadership panels that aimed to transform campus by making it an inclusive space for all students, in whatever way possible. I was in and out of the former Rector’s office, with other black and coloured students. We would talk to Prof Botman and some of his management team about our experiences. Being called kaffirs in Stellenbosch, being told by lecturers we don’t belong here because we made the mistake of asking for a word or two to be translated in a class, not being allowed to share rooms with white girls/guys in residences because white and black don’t mix, being told that we don’t deserve to be at Stellenbosch because we just fill part of the Equity quotas necessary for our courses and residences - not because many of us were A students right through high school till Matric finals. We told stories of how during “skakels” the white boys would refuse to shake our hands or talk to us, others would laugh in our faces. So while our white sisters got their “skakel” on, we would sit in a circle together at the back until the skakel was done, and then we would walk altogether back to res and listen to our sisters tell us of how great the guys at [insertKoshuis/PSOnamehere] were because we obviously did not meet the same people.

Indeed, we had become skilful at the rhetoric of narrating our tales without experiencing the pain. The university became well-versed with the challenges of being non-white and non-Afrikaans at Stellenbosch University. It became so normal at a stage that we started making jokes about it.

All these things happened, and for some reason myself and many other friends just shoved these things to the back of our minds, put our heads down, got our degrees, graduated in the DF Malan Sentrum and left Stellenbosch for our next adventure. We didn’t make massive movements, we didn’t kick up a storm and so many people were proud of me and us for doing that. “Well done,” they said, “you survived”. Your hard work has paid off for you. And it did pay off. Because we didn’t fight and argue and we limited our complaints and experiences to the tea-parties held for us in the Admin buildings by representatives of management, we became the go-to people for conversations on race and diversity and language and inclusivity; we could have those conversations not just on our own terms, but on their terms as well.

It was like helping an abusive partner understand why their being abusive to you was wrong while you were bleeding and trying to dress the wound from the last injury they inflicted on you. At some stage, you start to rationalise that it isn’t that bad, that they are doing their best to change, and that you must just be strong for the both of you. “Dit sal beter raak,” you tell yourself.

Yesterday for the first time, I had to ask myself, why did I not kick up a fuss, and today a bunch of first and second years are? Why did I keep quiet, and not make a big deal about the fact that little by little in subtle and overt ways my dignity was being stripped off of me? Were cookies and coffee in the admin building really enough to keep me quiet?

Three years ago, I wrote an article in which I was very pro-non racialism, all about let’s not see race, let us be one happy family, let us be nice. And in an ideal world, I would unashamedly stand by that statement. I really wish that we could operate and live that way because right now I am uncomfortable in my own skin as I am sure everyone else is too. But we can’t live that way because it is not reality for everyone. It is a very easy thing for my white friends to do in Stellenbosch. You can be blind to race when your race is the default. You can be blind to what privilege really means when your voice is the loudest in the room.

Whiteness is the norm in Stellenbosch; white Afrikaans-ness is the norm. Thus spaces, offices, shopping malls, classrooms all reaffirm norms that make sense to that. So when I come into class, residence, offices etc., I am an exception to the norm and must thus navigate the structural conditioning of the place without upsetting too many, while still claiming my space.

And for an 18, 19, 20, 21 year old, that is just f****** hard. You don’t even know what that means at that stage. All you know is that it’s not nice to not be fully accepted in a space that you thought you would be welcome in.

Afrikaans is vir seker my gunstelingtaal in Suid-Afrika. Dit is vir my die een taal wat gebeurtenisse, emosies, natuur en mense die beste kan beskryf.  En my gunstelingwoord in Afrikaans is “koester”. Dis ‘n woord wat ‘n mens meestal by troues hoor, en omdat ek baie Afrikaanse vriende het, het ek die woord al baie keer gehoor.

The English definition of “cherish” is to care for tenderly.

En toe het ek besef, ek is terug in Stellenbosch en ek is so hartseer oor dit wat nou gebeur omdat ek vir Stellenbosch in my hart koester en wil aanhou koester.

I love this place because of the potential it has. The fact that the thesis for apartheid was written in the walls of this university, the fact that this place was established to keep some out and welcome others in, the fact that this town has been the birthplace of some of the best and worst figures in South African history all bode for a fatalistic picture. But so much can be done with that. And I really believe that if Stellenbosch can get it right, South Africa will be fine. I love Stellenbosch because when I did facilitate talks and sessions on diversity and change etc., those conversations (albeit with a very small group of students) were small victories and they were what gave me hope.

I tremble to think that my children must one day attend another university. I want them here! But I want them to walk down Victoria street without having eggs thrown at them from some male residence because (probabilistically speaking) my children may not be white. I want them to ask tough questions in class and not be viewed as radical communists. I want my kids to come back from a night out in the town and not be afraid that some inebriated guys will trail them and call them kaffir and p**s and then be excused for it because they were drunk. I want my daughters to feel that a dress worn outside in Stellenbosch is not an invitation be ravaged by a horny lad.

I never want my children to hear the words, “Jy is nie soos ander swartes nie, dis hoekom jy so goed presteer.”

The ugly truth though is that my love for Stellenbosch and its potential does not change anything, in fact, my love and hopefulness for Stellenbosch is what keeps me comfortable. Because somehow it blinds me to think that dialogue and conversation is enough. Which it isn’t. Dialogue is a means to an end, it is not the end in itself. If dialogue was all we ever needed, I wouldn’t be at Stellenbosch today, heck – South Africa wouldn’t be what it is today.

My concern however is that thus far, neither the media nor Open Stellenbosch I think have been clear on how a fight for language equality became a race issue as well. What I understand and support is that the current protests and challenges are primarily directed at making Stellenbosch dual medium university as its previously Afrikaans counterparts are now i.e. UOFS (Kovsies) & UP (Tukkies). I think it is very necessary that Stellenbosch adopts dual medium as this means everyone has a good chance of knowing what’s going on in class, and it is the most practical option. A system in which MOST classes are available in Afrikaans, some are available in T-Option (50-50 Eng/Afr with Translation services) and some classes are available in English is problematic because at any given point someone will be disadvantaged by the language of instruction. Currently, the language policy does privilege Afrikaans people (regardless of race) as most of them understand English anyway. For most non-Afrikaans students, if English is their second language they are lucky. For many, English is most likely a third language and Afrikaans is a fourth/fifth language.

Am I against Afrikaans? No.

Am I against Afrikaans people and Afrikaans culture? No.

Am I against learning Afrikaans? No.

Am I against white people? No.

Am I against forcing others to learn IN Afrikaans? Yes.

Much of the response you hear to what’s happening today in Stellenbosch is summarised as follows:

“Stellenbosch is an Afrikaans University, if you don’t want to learn in Afrikaans, go somewhere else or go and build your own Xhosa, Zulu, Tswana University.”

“Rome was not built in a day, have patience – Stellenbosch can and will change soon but in the meantime let us all calm down and be objective.”

“Hoekom is dit skielik ‘n raskwessie? Ons moet die Afrikanervolk en ons taal beskerm teen die kanker van Engels en swart kommuniste.”

I take issue with these statements for several reasons. Firstly, choosing to come to a place does not make everything about that place right neither does it invalidate people’s unpleasant experiences/complaints in that place. If I chose to live in Nazi Germany, my disgust at the Jewish genocide would not have been invalidated purely by the choice I made to stay in Nazi Germany. Similarly, the fact that so many people stayed in South Africa quite comfortably during apartheid did not mean apartheid was okay; neither did it mean that those who challenged the system were wrong. Such logic is flawed and must be addressed.

Secondly, I want to problematize the precedent we are setting when we insinuate that spaces in South Africa will belong to some by virtue of their racial or linguistic associations. It is very dangerous to say such things in a post-1994 South Africa. To be part of this country, the underlying thesis that we have all implicitly accepted is that South Africa belongs to all who live in it. When we make exceptions to that, we can then start to assert that some public spaces will only welcome men while actively discriminating against women, that some public spaces will only welcome religious people, while excluding the non-religious, that some spaces will only welcome heterosexuals and not welcome others. It is a big problem, because when you set that precedent you can’t draw a line.

Thirdly, such statements ignore the fact that universities like Stellenbosch were sustained by the very redirecting of state resources to develop and uplift a very small part of the population at the expense of another. It is very arrogant to assert that people must just go and build their own universities. If an entire state machinery was needed to maintain and sustain one, two or three purely Afrikaans universities, can you imagine what it would take to sustain three Xhosa, three Zulu, three Tswana universities all at the same time? But even beyond that on a level of practicality, the development of Afrikaans as an academic language is wonderful and I think we should honour and respect that BUT this does not mean in practice that it can be the same for other languages. Where we have 11 official languages in SA, English is indeed our best compromise in academic spaces to maintain our international standing as graduates. The alternative is unsustainable and impractical.

Fourthly, and this is the most important point – Stellenbosch is a PUBLIC university, funded by people like you and me. It is a university - which by the very definition of public – is and therefore should be open and ACCESSIBLE to all who attend it. And if we are very honest, Stellenbosch, instead of spending R80mil on translation services, should consider redirecting those funds to dual medium classes. A university’s primary responsibility is NOT to preserve culture. A university’s primary role is to educate and foster learning. Should universities conduct events and activities that celebrate its culture and history? BY ALL MEANS – but not at the expense of actively excluding people in the academic space and by extension all other spaces.

It is very disturbing and surprising indeed that for 21 years Stellenbosch has managed to get away with the status quo. I think that even though Rome was not built in a day, Stellenbosch has had time to change – we have BEEN talking, and I think that if the RAU’s, UPs, Kovsies etc of the day could change – it is hard to understand why changes here have been so limited.

And yet it is not. The answer, I believe, lies in understanding how language, race and power intersect in Stellenbosch and essentially South Africa. Afrikaans on its own is not a problem. The problem is the way Afrikaans interacts with race and power on campus and this is what facilitates an exclusionary and discriminatory environment for those who fit neither of the most dominant categories: white/male/Afrikaans. We must be honest with ourselves and acknowledge that (in this case) language is not neutral. It is laden with meaning, with history, with culture and with power.

Thus when a language [Afrikaans] is given a privileged position in an academic institution [Stellenbosch University & Elsenburg] and this makes the lecture hall an environment in which mostly [white] Afrikaans people will be benefitted by the language of instruction; it facilitates an experience of exclusion. In a town like Stellenbosch, where most spaces are already dominated by males who are very white and/or very Afrikaans, the academic space simply reinforces what is normal outside without accounting for fairness and neutrality that should be visible in an academic space. So when Afrikaans and whiteness unfortunately can be used as an exclusionary tool in the academic space, this by extension allows and facilitates the use of Afrikaans and whiteness as an exclusionary tool in social spaces as well i.e. residences, offices etc. And this is the crux of the problem.

University is meant to be a critical space with diverse views, representations and perspectives. If the university keeps reinforcing what is already happening in the town, the town keeps reinforcing what is happening in the university, and nothing changes.

Furthermore by allowing Afrikaans to facilitate exclusion and having white Afrikaans males at the forefront of the struggle to keep things as they are or stall change, we rehash historical narratives about Afrikaans hegemony and white male superiority and most importantly we rehash an speculative fear and incompatibility between Afrikaans-ness and whiteness and a new South Africa.

So what about white English speakers you ask? They are being disadvantaged in the classroom as well and we don’t see them protesting. Indeed. And the reason for this is because they are white. While I will concede that a few of my white English friends have said they have been told they don’t belong in an Afrikaans university, the reality is that such a statement does not limit them from having access to university or social spaces because they are white and do not carry the social and racial baggage that comes with being non-white in this town. They can also occupy spaces and blend in. They can, if necessary, walk into a lecturer or a tutor’s office and get further assistance on the parts they did miss in class, without being seen as “whiny” or “incompetent” or “the equity quota”. And essentially, beyond the classroom, they are welcome in all spaces in Stellenbosch because their skin and the access and social capital that comes with it is still the norm.

When you are black and you do the same, it is naturally up for question whether you actually didn’t get what was said because you don’t speak Afrikaans or because you actually shouldn’t be at university? In a space where you are not the norm, everything about you constitutes an alternative narrative up for debate and questioning.

Campus security will not troll you around on campus if you are white with dreadlocks and barefoot walking at night – they will if you aren’t white. You will not be asked for Student Card and ID and Drivers Licence at a party or a bar if you are white unless you obviously look like a child, but after 4 years in Stellenbosch they will if you are black. You will never be called a kaffir, you will never not have someone shake your hand as a way of introduction because you are white – no that comes with non-white turf. Of course, we don’t expect the university to control the streets and pubs and clubs of Stellenbosch – definitely not. But as the university, as the heartbeat of this town, when we facilitate exclusionary spaces that privilege Afrikaansness and privilege whiteness within our walls, we indirectly make it normal and okay outside our walls.

So what about Coloured students who prefer Afrikaans as a medium of instruction? I feel they are well within their rights to prefer that and that isn’t threatened by calling for a dual medium university. What I do take issue with is when this specific argument is used as a reason to stall change at SU or maintain SU as it is. If we as an institution were really interested in Coloured people and all that Colouredness meant, then our expressions of Afrikaans language, culture and people would go beyond what it is now. Then we would see an institution-wide celebration of the Kaapse-Klopse and we would have active conversations about the Bo-Kaap and District Six and the emergence of Afrikaans as a kombuistaal. We would talk about how Afrikaans was appropriated from the non-white slaves and became arguably the biggest component of the Afrikaner nationalist movement. If we were really interested in Coloured people’s struggles and challenges, then the face of Afrikaans at Stellenbosch University would not be mainly white Afrikaans males. It would be coloured Afrikaans women too. And black Afrikaans women too – because they actually exist. But it is not. We would celebrate that and problematize it too. And this would go beyond our Afrikaans en Nederlands or History departments. But we don’t. Because the use of Afrikaans at Stellenbosch has not yet matured to a point at which it can be used to facilitate those conversations openly and honestly.

Ek dink ons moet ook eerlik met mekaar wees. En ek dink, veral wit Afrikanermense moet ‘n eerlike gesprek met hulleself hou. Afrikaans is baie tale, dit is baie verskillende kulture. Meer as dit, Afrikaans is in ons eie geskiedenis (en selfs vandag) baie keer gebruik teen mense wat nie wit is nie. As ons vir ‘n Afrikaanse-universiteit wil verdedig, dan moet ons aanvaar dat dit behels onder andere ‘n verdediging van: Kaapse Afrikaans, Swartlands Afrikaans, Bolands Afrikaans, Overbergs Afrikaans, Weskus-Sandvelds Afrikaans, Karoo-Afrikaans, Oos-Kaaps Afrikaans, Oranjerivier- en Gariep-Afrikaans, Boesmanslands, Griekwa-Afrikaans, Namakwalands, en Richterveld-Afrikaans. En dan moet ons erken dat die gesig daarvan is meestal nie die gesig van ‘n wit Afrikanerman nie. Ons moet erken dat baie min mense is verbind tot die beskerming van alle vorme en alle gesigte van Afrikaans in die nuwe Suid-Afrika.

Ons moet erken en herken dat die ontwikkeling en onderhoud van Afrikaans as ‘n akademiese taal, as ‘n kultuur en as ‘n magtige ekonomiese en sosiale gereedskap was nooit bedoel of bestem om ‘n nie-wit bevolking te beskerm nie. Dus kan die teenwoordigheid van ‘n Afrikaans-sprekende Kleurling-populasie nie gebruik word as ‘n rede om US te behou soos wat dit nou is nie net omdat dit gemaklik is in hierdie gesprek. Dit wys dat ons net belangstelling in kleurlingstudente en mense het wanneer dit die doeleindes van ‘n wit Afrikaanse agenda pas en dit is baie oneerlik.

I cannot claim to fully understand the challenge of being coloured and Afrikaans in South Africa, let alone Stellenbosch. I don’t fully understand what it means, but I can imagine the complexities and dichotomies it creates and allows. Regardless of whether the coloured student does understand Afrikaans in the classroom, they still have limited access to certain spaces in the town by virtue of the narratives attached to their skin. Narratives that, ironically, were entrenched and upheld for years by a white Afrikaans supremacist state and university. That again is why an academic space that facilitates exclusion through language needs to be eliminated. We really have undermined how much almost 100 years of protected supremacy can affect the psyche, development and cohesion of a diverse nation such as ours.

When we accept only cosmetic changes to an institution or a language or a culture, we only do ourselves an injustice. Apartheid may be over as a legislated practice, but socially, culturally and even institutionally, in Stellenbosch and South Africa it is very much alive.

Am I against Afrikaans? No.

Am I against Afrikaans people and Afrikaans culture? No.

Am I against learning Afrikaans? No.

Am I against white people? No.

Am I against forcing others to learn IN Afrikaans? Yes.

The fact that SU till very recently did not have a discrimination policy is exactly what proves that even if individuals want to claim they are not racist, discriminatory or exclusionary, the institution implicitly is – because before now, there was no concrete procedure of punishments for acts of racism and discrimination. In fact, it was always up for discussion, “…but is it really racism? Is it really discrimination..?” And if the institution is exclusionary, it means that those who support exclusion and racism and discrimination get to feel comfortable here. That is not okay.

It would have been nice in this time to see Stellenbosch academics write and make statements about the challenges being raised by the protests on campus now. It would have been great to have open lectures from for example the Anthropology department where all students are openly invited to learn and talk about Colonialism, decolonisation, language, identity and power. It would have been stunning to have maybe our Politics Department or Sociology or History or Philosophy departments offer open lectures on Student Movements, how struggle songs have been used to form identity, what social capital means, what white privilege, black privilege, equality, revolution actually means, what objective and logical reasoning is, what role academic critique should play in the Stellenbosch of 2015? It would have been great to have academics especially stand up and claim space in the current discourse which very actively is criticising them; and provide alternative, nuanced insights to a divided campus that is getting more and more sensationalised. That is what an academic space is for. But nothing of the sort has happened, because we haven’t got there yet at Stellenbosch University.

I don’t know, maybe staff members are afraid to say something bad about their workplace, maybe they don’t have time and are overworked or maybe some are simply not interested. I can only speculate. But I do know this is a missed opportunity to give a different narrative to what the academic space at SU is like. By keeping silent, we reinforce the assumptions – that the academic space here is not open to the negotiation and re-navigation of existing structural privileges.

Finally, I will say that beyond all these arguments, we must be able to visualise what an Open Stellenbosch would be. A transformed Stellenbosch would be a place where people can be taught in a language they understand but that would be the start of it. It would be a place in which we could both celebrate and problematize English and Afrikaans diversity and how both interplay with race and power and culture. It would be a space in which we can discuss and challenge the development of English as a language which indeed still has colonial undertones no matter how much we try to make it ours. It would be a space in which racists are not welcome all be they “Kill the Boer” kind of racists or “Kaffir-calling” kind of racists.

Yes, I will agree that some people were very offensive at the march yesterday, that some political parties are really taking advantage of the calls for transformation for their own aims. But we must acknowledge that the social movement taking place in Stellenbosch is made up of different people with different ideas and cleavages. It is unfair to judge a movement by what people on its fringes do – that by no means discredits the cause or the current criticisms levelled against the university and the town.

I don’t believe that a transformed/transforming Stellenbosch should welcome both those who are endeared by calls to kill the Boers or kill the kaffirs.

An Open Stellenbosch would be a space that allows me to flourish, not in spite of an experience of inequality, but BECAUSE of an experience of equality. An Open Stellenbosch would be a space where blacks and whites can share residence rooms, where orientation week for first years would not perpetuate patriarchal and misogynistic attitudes already present in most of our cultures, where verbally abusive white drunk boys are not excused because they are drunk in res, while black boys are given disciplinary action.

An Open Stellenbosch would be a space that for once allows me to be upset that the response - to my being called a kaffir, to white boys laughing in my face at skakels, to my being told by lecturers that I don’t belong or deserve to be here - was cookies and tea and a whole lot of talk. Not consequential disciplinary action.

Do I love Stellenbosch? Yes.

Is Stellenbosch a great place to study? Yes [the best].

Does challenging where Stellenbosch has faltered make me love it any less? No.

I am here. As Black, Afrikaans-, English-, Xhosa-, Igbo-speaking and Womanly as I am. And I am here to stay.

>>>Back to The Open Stellenbosch Seminar


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  • Goedso Lovelyn! Uitstekende artikel! So very proud to know someone as courageous as you. Stand for what you feel and believe in! Respect!

  • Annie Gagiano

    A most moving statement -- articulated with impeccable moral authority and insight. Thank you so much for writing this [Ms Nwadeyi] and for placing it so prominently [Litnet].

  • I am profoundly moved by your words Lovelyn. You are a great writer. I am so sorry for what you have experienced. Your calmness and eloquence is incredibly inspirational. Thank you.

  • Ek is 'n wit Afrikaner wat in' n bevoorregte nasionalistiese gesinsopset grootgeword het. Die beste ding wat ooit met my gebeur het, was dat keuses wat ek gemaak het bepaalde omstandighede meegebring het waardeur ek verwerping van die meer tradisionele Afrikaners moes verwerk. Die keuses wat ek gemaak het, hoewel eties niks fout mee nie, het my skielik apart van die groter Afrikaanse groep geplaas. Ek het voor 'n koue harde masjien te staan gekom en moes kies. Ja vir die masjien van aanvaarding en beskerming deur dit wat die Afrikaner gemaak het wat hy/sy vandag nog is. Of ja vir dit wat ek met my hele hart glo reg is. Ek het laasgenoemde gekies en daarna weer en weer keuses gemaak teen die tradisionele Afrikanernorm in. Hoewel dit makliker geword het om my eie redelike keuses te maak teenoor blote navolging van die groep, en ek wel deur die jare ander Afrikanervriende gemaak het wat soos ek dink, word ek steeds onverhoeds winduit geslaan deur dinge wat Afrikaners in my omgewing sê en doen. Die punt wat ek wil maak is: die totale en omvattende waardestelsel waarvolgens wit Afrikaners funksioneer, is so diep in die kollektiewe onderbewussyn ingebed, dit is uiters moeilik vir 'n indiwidu om hom/haar daarvan los te skeur en deur sielswroegende introspeksie 'n standpunt buite die groep in te neem.
    Ek het aan die begin van die sewentigs aan US studeer. Ek kon toe al besluit het om by die Progressiewe Party aan te sluit, maar ek het nie. Om net as gewone blanke Afrikanermeisie aanvaarding te vind binne die oorweldigende "superieure, onvlekbare, paternalistiese" akademiese en sosiale strukture, het baie geverg. Ek kan my net indink hoe moeilik dit moet wees vir anderskleurige jong mense. Die ding is: die ware vyand kan nie stukkend geslaan en afgebrand word nie. Die ware vyand sal net verdwyn wanneer elke wit Afrikaner-individu op sy eie en as deel van instansies, sy hand baie diep in sy eie siel sal steek en hom/haarself van irrasionele kollektiewe invloede sal losskeur. In my eie lewe het ek ondervind dat dit 'n lewenstaak is.

    Sea and sand
    My love My land,
    God bless Africa.

    Sea and sand
    My love My land,
    God bless Africa.

    But more the South of Africa where we live...

    Bless the angry mountains
    And the smiling hills
    Where the cool water spills
    To heal the earth's brow

    Bless the children of South Africa
    The white children
    And the black children
    But more the black children
    Who lost the sea and sand
    That they may not lose love
    For white children
    Whose fathers raped the land...

    Sea and sand
    My love My land,
    God bless Africa

    Many sunsets
    Gold and crimson
    Have dripped on the horizon,
    Weeping for the dying day.

    Many dawns
    Have risen
    In timely resurrection
    From their cradles of light.

    Sunsets and dawns
    Dawns and sunsets.
    I have seen them all

    But when,
    Oh when will I see that day
    When love will walk the common way
    To heal my wounded people
    And break the shackles around their hearts?

    - Don Mattera

  • Johannes Comestor

    Hierdie geleentheid word deur linkse elemente aangegryp om hulle politieke korrektheid ingevolge die mode in hulle reaksies uit te stal. Ek het in die buiteland studeer en daar was geen sprake dat ek my kon aanmatig om daardie universiteit te transformeer volgens bv my taalvoorkeur nie. Die skryfster erken dat sy haar nie in die plek van bruin studente kan stel nie. Nog minder het sy aanvoeling vir wit Afrikaanssprekende studente en vir wit Suid-Afrikaners wat daagliks al hoe meer deur swartes se broer-en-suster-kultuur verswelg word. Die US mag volgens haar nie 'n enklawe wees waar Afrikaners hulle kultuur uitleef nie. Waarom word daardie mensereg hulle nie gegun nie? Wie se skuld is dit dat die staat net een onderrigtaal per universiteit subsidieer? Die ANC, maar na hierdie party word geen vinger gewys nie. Die doel van hierdie subsidiëring is om Afrikaans aan al die universiteite te vernietig.

  • I feel presumptuous to call you sister, because I am white. But I am a woman and I am not Afrikaans and I studied at and now work at Stellenbosch University. And everything you say makes me proud to know we're both Maties, both South Africans, both women. Your voice has articulated so many emotions that I carry at the moment. I am sad ... sad that someone like you, who has been brave, strong and intelligent in your choices, now feels they perhaps didn't do enough. Sad that Stellenbosch, for all its many many people who wish for peaceful, ethical, sustainable transformation, has run out of time and now has to deal with this rawness, this confused sadness. But I also feel hopeful, because of your voice, your emotion, your sensibility, your wisdom, your courage. As a lecturer, one of my primary visions is facilitating the development of our graduates to be thought leaders in our communities ... And someone like you gives me hope. You are the change South Africa wants to be, you have taken the best from Stellenbosch and made it better. Thank you!

  • Moving article, but we have to be objective and realistic. How can we be surprised about security after the previous day’s anarchy?
    If the argument that US is an Afrikaans Uni is not valid, because then we have to build a Tswana, Zulu Uni etc and we cannot afford it, SA would be better to declare English as our national language and place the other languages in the back row.
    You may speak it, you may teach it but it will not be government sponsored. SABC included.
    It seems that we very selectively insist on our multilingual , multi-coloured rainbow nation constitution. Anything white and Afrikaans belongs to the oppressor, the rest is our constitutional right ...

  • Why are we talking about making a compromise and learning in either English or in Afrikaans? Afrikaans developed as an Academic language because the Afrikaners made it academic by deciding to 'educate' themselves and their children in it. Why are we afraid to develop our African languages? Perhaps Fanons famous inferiority complex and cognitive dissonance is very real in Africa? (If not familiar read 'Black skins, White masks')
    Wake up Black Africa!
    Africa needs a societal transformation process, similar to what happened in Europe during the 'Enlightenment' process, industrial revolution and more recently, China.
    In this process the broadest section of society has to have access to cutting edge scientific knowledge. This is Knowledge which can be made accessible in a language they are not alienated from.
    Simple question how do you get someone out of the township? Educate them in their own language! That's how to 'develop' in the broadest sense of the word.
    What are we afraid off? Decolonization at South African universities must begin and end at pointing fingers at the government, who has done nothing for more than 21 years in pursuit of 'true development'.
    What Stellenbosch has accomplished and the academization of Afrikaans is an example to all of Africa, and not only South Africa.
    It is an example for a continent that is 'underdeveloped' as a result of self imposed alienation.

    • Willem de Jager

      What great insight you speak. Nothing empowers and liberates like building, fostering and developing one's own. Colonising Stellenbosch in a second language (English) will not make anyone great. English is after all spoken by a vast majority of white people who insist that "there is only one race, the human race" and such like liberal white epithets, that always implies a Western, Anglophone dominated world. Accommodating and celebrating cultural, linguistic and anthropological diversity is the enemy of that power base. Be great in your native Zulu or Xhosa or Afrikaans or English and we will be great as equals.

  • Thank you for your elequence and compassionate wisdom, Lovelyn. Ek is dankbaar daarvoor. En ek is ook dankbaar teenoor jou.

  • SW van der Merwe

    Sjoe, dis heavy stuff hierdie. I am also a Matie from the 80"s and your insight and articulation of the problem has just blown me away. Very well said. I could not have done any better. I love Stellenbosch as much as any student that has studied there and wish the university well in their future. May people like you be more vocal and peacefully transform the culture at Stellenbosch. It's a mammoth task.

  • Ek was in presies dieselfde posisie as Grieta, net by UPE, met presies dieselfde opinies. Tot vandag toe moet ek ligloop in die meer konserwatiewe kringe waar ek beweeg. I agree with Lovelyn and can identify with her struggle and feelings. I recently attended a choir festival where both the Maties and the NMMU choirs performed. I could not believe my eyes, when I saw how few students of "any colour" there were in the SU choir! AT NMMU the situation is completely different and their completely multi-racial, multi-lingual choir was the audience favourite. Unfortunately there is now also an element of reverse discrimination at NMMU in the sense that Afrikaans students are increasingly forced to let go of their language, although the university is supposed to be bilingual. Xhosa speaking students are of course using their mother tongue when conversing amongst each other and that is completely acceptible. Many black students and lecturers are openly aggressive towards white/Afrikaans students. This is sad. When will we ever be able to really accept and let go? Ons bly in 'n pragtige sonskynland met 'n besondere reënboognasie. Dit sal so wonderlik wees as almal net die son op mekaar wil laat skyn.

  • Sydney Berrington

    I am not a fan of the Open Stellenbosch movement, as I feel it has handled things badly and incited more racism than it has broken down. However, I cannot disagree with one word written in this article. It is coherent and logically thought out and if people on both sides of this debate were to argue in this way, positive change could have been brought about long ago.

  • Dear Lovelyn Chidinma Nwadeyi

    You fit the demography of what the university must transform too well - I congratulate you.Your voice has now become more important than that of the descendants of the people who had built that university with their own money to promote their culture and language - you really should feel proud of your achievement. But try to remember that even though you may think that you've conquered the institution as a trophy for your ideology, you will never be able to conquer the spirit and the soul of a People who had paid in blood, through two civil wars against the mightiest empire the world had ever seen, for the privileges you think came so easy.
    You can have the building and the books and the computers and the lecture halls and the amphitheatre and the cafeteria and every other physical attachment to the grounds and property that used to house this awesome Afrikaner facility and conform it to your heart’s content, because you are going to do it anyway. It is what they would call the "spoils of war", or in this case the the "thuggery of the dictate of the majority". Enjoy your loot, just try to remember that the people who had built that institution long before your time and without your help, is going to watch with interest whether it will produce the same level of excellence that it has become known for world-wide, and don't worry about us, we've already instituted plans to rescue our cultural goods, and we're well on our way to establishing the next generation university that is way beyond your reach.
    You cannot stop us, you cannot stop our yearning for freedom, and you can never loot that which doesn't form part of the physical realm - our language and our identity ...
    Oh and those bad feelings you are having, it is called a conscience, and there's a reason why it is bugging you. Maybe one day it will dawn on you ...

    • Voice of no reason

      Jacques Mare, your response to Lovelyn fascinates me. You speak of "...descendants of the people who had built that university with their own money to promote their culture and language". This is all well and good until you realise that your words carefully ignore important parts of history. Have you heard of a place called "Die Vlakte"? I didn’t think so. Its ironic that you talk of people conquering the institution as a "trophy for your ideology", yet you talk about others building a university "to promote their culture and language". Your ideologies seem to stand squarely on your way to reason, and you suggest your ideologies as valid, while suggesting others' use of 'ideologies' as invalid. This is stratosphere levels of irony.

  • Die hele konsep maak my dom. As jy nie in Afrikaans onderrig wil ontvang nie hoekom skryf jy by ’n Afrikaanse universiteit in? Daar is tog vele ander. Ons is minstens ’n vry land, as jy nie hou van wat jy ontvang nie beweeg aan. Hoekom alles om jou probeer verander om jou te pas? Ek dink hierdie studente is daar geplaas met ’n doel om die sisteem omver te werp en nie om opleiding te ontvang nie.

    • There is one counter argument, the Univ is subsidized by taxpayers money. It carries some weight. The counter argument is that there is the world class UCT +-50km.
      The next question is should Afrikaans speaking students then insist UCT do both languages and what about the other 9 languages then?
      I get the feeling it burns some peoples arses when something is white, speaks Afrikaans. Must be terrible if you have such a bad self image. I am also not convinced that all protesters are students, just like most misbehaving 'union' members on strike are bused in.

  • Wessel Pretorius

    Nou toe dan, kom ons gee vir julle wat julle wil hê. Ons was en is en sal altyd pioniers wees op baie gebiede. Kom ons maak dan soos in Kanada waar onderwys en tertiêre instellings deur middel van tv tot binne in jou huis aangebied kan word. Beset die universiteite, verwyder die standbeelde en maak dan net soos jy wil maar oorlewing en voortbestaan is deel van die Afrikaner ! Ons sal altyd weer bo uitkom. Daar kom 'n dag wat jy nie sal weet wat om volgende te blameer nie dan sal iou kinders vir jou vra, nou wat nou ? Voorspoed !

  • 99% waaroor geskryf was in die artikel was NIE oor Afrikaans as onderrigmedium NIE. Hoe gaan die taalkwessie dan die ander 99% van haar "probleme" oplos? Is haar "probleme" dalk agv frustrasie wat uitkom op die "verkeerde" manier? Hoekom? Ek mag nie sê die wit Afrikaanssprekende mans (wam) is gefrustreerd omdat hulle afgekeur word by universiteite omdat hul "wam" is nie. Mag nie sê hul word afgekeur by alle staatsinstansies vir werk, want hulle is "wam" nie. Mag nie sê hulle word afgekeur by ander werke want hul is "wam"nie. Mag nie sê hulle kan nie by sportspanne inkom nie, want hulle is "wam". Waarnatoe moet die "wam's" gaan om geld te verdien en/of van hulle frustrasies ontslae te raak? Wie moet hulle kwalik neem? Daar is 'n kookpot wat gaan opblaas, sodra die jong "wam's" besluit om ook te "toi-toi".

  • Annatjie Kruger

    Dit is interessant dat dieselfde mense wie SKREE oor gelykheid (ras en geslag), broederskap en die reg om in hulle eie taal geleer te word, vergeet dat Stellenbosch (anders as Rhodes Universiteit) 'n universiteit in 'n gebied is waar die oorgrote meerderheid Afrikaanssprekende Wit- en Kleurlinggemeenskappe woonagtig is. Dus is dit die Afrikaanssprekende kinders van twee rasse wat nou moet terugstaan omdat iemand besluit het dat die Swart studente moet by ALLE universiteite geakkommodeer word. Dat slegs hulle versoeke van belang is. Hier is dit nie wie jy is en waar jy gebore en groot geword het nie, net solank jou vel "swart" is. Die skrywer van hierdie artikel sê sy is Nigeries met ander woorde sy is in Nigerië gebore, maar wil haarself hier kom uitspreek oor 'n onderwerp wat eg Suid-Afrikaans is. Hoekom? Omdat sy kan Afrikaans praat. Ek kan Engels praat, beteken dit dat ek na Oxford in Engeland kan gaan en daar gaan betoog dat ek in Xhosa onderrig wil ondergaan. My antwoord is en bly: Die Universiteit van Potchefstroom, Die Vrystaat en Stellenbosch is (of was) oorwegend Afrikaanssprekend in oorwegend Afrikaanssprekende gemeenskappe. As jy nie in Afrikaans onderrig wil word nie, gaan na 'n universiteit waar die taal van you keuse gebruik word. Hierdie het niks met die onderrigtaal te doen nie, maar ALLES met politiek. Een van die dae is dit weer Algemene Verkiesings en die ANC en hulle trawante sal tot na die verkiesing alles in hulle vermoë doen om die rowe van sere af te krap. Sere wat hulle nie kan bekostig om toe te laat om te genees nie, want indien hulle dit doen sal die Swart studente miskien (net miskien) begin leer dat die ANC hier die "vark" in die verhaal is en sal die steun vir die ANC drasties afneem.

    • Voice of no reason

      "Dus is dit die Afrikaanssprekende kinders van twee rasse wat nou moet terugstaan omdat iemand besluit het dat die Swart studente moet by ALLE universiteite geakkommodeer word". Public insitutions should accommodate EVERYONE, and you choose to focus on an aspect not raised in this article.

  • Stellenbosch , is one of the best institutions in South Africa , and so what if the majority at head is coloured , if they are doing a good job , then it shouldn't matter. By protesting , you put the students at risk and take away their time of education they PAY for (expensive) , STOP connecting racism with everything in South Africa , just let it be. I don’t feel anger over this , but rather pity. Every race is important , white , coloured , Indian, not just the black race.

    • Voice of no reason

      This is exactly what this article is about. Dismissing how others feel because you are blinded by your position.

  • Farren Hayden

    Lovelyn, thank you for a thoughtful and illuminating examination of the situation at Stellenbosch.

  • Dit is `n Afrikaanse Univ. As dit jou nie pas nie gaan na `n ander Univ. Jy het die vryiheid om te kies.

    • Wat vir 'n ding is 'n "Afrikaanse Universiteit"? Universiteite se missie is tog/behoort te wees om studiegeleenthede te bied vir enigeen wie daar wil studeer? Om 'n universiteit te ettiketeer as 'n "Afrikaanse" universiteit is erg aanmatigend.

      Maar waarskynlik is dit ydele en selfsugtige versugtinge om krampagtig te wil vaskleef aan die era voor 1994. As ALMAL net wil leer om aan ander te gun dit wat ons onsself gun, dan kan ons vorder in hierdie land.

      Hoe is dit moontlik dat iemand kan verklaar dat "as jy in ('n ander taal) wil onderrig word, gaan heen en soek so 'n plek" Die US van weleer is nou ALMAL se plek - NIE net die Afrikaner nie!!

      • Leon die Universiteit van Stellenbosch was en is `n Afrikaanse instelling. Ons het nie nodig om vas te klou daaraan nie. Dit is ons reg om dit te beskerm. Gaan probeer studeer in China of Japan, dring aan op slegs Engels en jy gaan sleg tweede kom. 80% plus se voertaal in die Wes-Kaap is Afrikaans. Waarom nie `n Afrikaanse Univ nie. Vir jou inligting, dit gaan oor meer as `n taal. Moedertaal-onderrig is ’n gegewe en is nie onderhandelbaar nie.

  • Ek het nie die hele artikel gelees nie - al wat ek wil sê is dat ek my nagraadse studies in Engels voltooi het en ek is baie dankbaar daarvoor want dit het groter deure oopgemaak vir my veral in die besigheid en korporatiewe industrieë. As ek in Afrikaans moes studeer sou ek dit tien teen een baie moeiliker gevind het en heel moontlik vakke moes her. Die wêreld draai nie net om Afrikaans en Stellenbosch nie - ja dit is ons huistaal - maar 'n mens moet mededeelsaam wees in die besigheidwêreld en besigheid doen in 'n medium wat jou kliënte en kollegas ook verstaan dus makliker maak vir almal om suksesvol te kan wees maak nie saak wat jou huistaal is nie. Ek stem vir Engelse klasse bloot vir die universele koppeling aan die vaardighede wat opgehoop en bekom word deur 'n universele taal. Plus, dit was 'n lekker uitdaging ook wat ek behaal het en ek sal altyd trots voel. Ek het my Graad in Engels geswot.

    • Baie Afrikaanssprekende mense het met Eng as tweede taal die wêreld vermag, so dis nie noodsaaklik om in Eng te studeer nie, die groot verskil tussen Xhosa- en Afrikaanssprekers by SU is dat eersgenoemde hulle skoolloopbaan in Eng voltooi het, Afr sprekers het nie.

  • "You can be blind to race when your race is the default." Very well said. Incidentally this is exactly the situation white folks find themselves in in the SA of today. Black is the default race, the overwhelming majority, and the minority groups, including the whites of course, by default get the short end of the stick. Lovelyn wrote an excellent article here and it makes perfect sense for students wishing to compete and perform on an international platform should be taught in English but I have to agree with an earlier comment that there is an excellent alternative only fifty km away at UCT. So why all the fuss? It is a typical "you have something I don't want you to have and I'm going to take it from you by whatever means" scenario. Yes your non-acceptance in Stellenbosch, the cookies and tea, the many talks etc are all very wrong and sad and I feel for you, but you did it to yourself because surely you must have known before you enrolled that the medium of teaching is Afrikaans. I hope that we will all maintain our sanity as things progress because we have nowhere else to run to. We just have to make it work right here.

  • Die hele debat ontbloot net een ding en dit is die akademiese armoede van die kontinent. Waarom studeer by 'n Universiteit duisende kilometers van jou tuisland?
    Die antwoord is voor die hand liggend. Daar is nie 'n eweknie in jou tuisland nie. Daarom gaan jy na 'n ander land waar dit wel is. Gee jou dit jou nou die reg om die taal van onderrig voor te skryf of vra dit aanpassing van jou veral as die Universiteit geleë is 'n streek waar die spreektaal oorwegend Afrikaans is.
    Na 1994 was dit duidelik dat die tyd aangebreek het dat opvoedkundige inrigtings
    oopgestel word vir almal om te studeer en hulself te bekwaam om 'n bydrae vir die verdere ontwikkeling van Suid-Afrika te bevorder.
    Ongelukkig word die deelproses nou gelykgestel aan die demografie van die land wat beteken nou is 90 % wat voorheen joune was nou myne, wat dus impliseer dat sou die blanke- en kleuringgemeenskappe buitengewone bevolkingsgroei ondervind en saam nie 20% maar 35 % van die bevolking vorm daar weer 'n herverdeling en herskikking moet plaasvind, wat dan die belaglikheid daarvan ontbloot.
    Daar moet dus na ander oplossings gekyk word en dit sal daarin lê om geld te bestee om goeie skole en Universiteite op te rig in die gebiede waar die behoeftes en aanvraag die grootste is om sodoende die druk van bestaande universiteite ens te verlig, maar dit kan nie gedoen word nie sonder die nodige ekonomiese inspuiting in die gebiede.
    Word dit nie gedoen nie loop bestaande universiteite en ander die gevaar om onder
    die toenemende vraag te sink soos die oorlaaide vlugtelingbote omdat dit nie in staat is om die vrag veilig te vervoer, sonder dat van die passasiers oorboord val en verdrink, wat mi die Afrikaansprekende student by Stellenbosch is.

  • Die geveinstheid in die inherente argumente van hierdie brief is dat, indien Afrikaansprekendes dieselfde eise en argumente by al die non-Afrikaanse universiteite waar menigte Afrikaansprekendes hul bevind vir hulself sou opeis en aanwend, sal hierdie einste voorstaanders, verseker as heftige teestanders van Afrikaanse gelykheid by sodanige universiteite gal blaas.

    Die ware agenda in hierdie brief is verbloem dmv die argumente hierin verwoord. Die versluierde agenda is dat vir hierdie mense is Afrikaans as taal uitgedien, en moet alle middelle aangewend word om dit te versmoor!

  • Net een ding is baie duidelik: die probleme om ons universiteite is geweldig in omvang en multidimensioneel van aard. Dit is moeilik vir enige indiwidu wat 'n standpunt slegs uit een perspektief verdedig, om 'n sinvolle bydrae tot die moontlikheid van 'n oplossing te maak.
    Net so sal mens multidimensioneel moet dink om die heel eerste fout te identifiseer wat gemaak is ter aanleiding van die kettingreaksie van omstandighede tot en met die probleem waaroor dit in hierdie debat gaan. Een feit waarby ons nie gaan verbykom nie, is dat Die Nasionale Party, aanvanklik onder HF Vewoerd, in Afrikaans baie groot misstappe teen mense begaan het. As almal van ons in hierdie land histories gelyke geleenthede kon gehad het in dinge soos onderwys en werksgeleenthede; indien ons as broers en susters met mekaar kon omgaan deur al die dekades wat ter sprake is, sou dinge nie daar uitgesien het soos dit nou daar uitsien nie. Dit breek almal van ons wat lief is vir Afrikaans se harte, maar dit bly ongelukkig die taal waarin ons voorvaders die toekoms geskep het waarin ons vandag leef en waarin ons vandag die prys betaal.

  • Beste Grieta
    Vra jouself die vraag af hoekom daar nie gelyke geleenthede was nie?
    Die antwoord is eenvoudig die miljoene Rande wat in tuislande ingepomp is het in 'n bodemlose put beland want die tuislandregerings was deurgaans netso korrup soos die huidige ANC-regering en het enkeles eenvoudig skatryk geword en die armes armer.
    Dit was nie net blanke belastinggeld nie. Min mense was bewus daarvan dat swart mense 'n algemene belasting en verder 'n bykomstige belasting gebaseer op inkomste en 'n plaaslike belasting asook 'n hospitaalbelasting betaal het waar toepaslik.
    Hierdie fondse is dan saam met blanke belastinggeld onder die tuislande versprei.
    Venda-tuisland het wel in die regte rigting beweeg maar is gou deur die 'ANC' na oorname vernietig want geen teken van enige suksesse wat wel behaal is moes staande bly nie.
    Dit was amper soos 'n Isis in die kleine. Dit het nie net in tuislande gebeur nie maar ook in swart woongebiede na die oorname deur swart plaaslike besture. Na die inlywing by blanke munisipaliteite het geweldige korrupsie aan die lig gekom.
    Waar 'n plek soos Daveyton bv finansieel volkome onafhanklik was en oor 'n beter
    busdiens bv as Benoni beskik het met talle geriewe soos 'n eie bioskoop, sportstadion, tennisbane ens het dit totaal onder swart bestuur in duie gestort.
    In 'n gebaar van versoening is bates wat nie opgespoor kon word afgeskryf. Later het dit aan die lig gekom dat as die owerheid 'n kontantvloei probleem ondervind het is die bates op 'n nie-amptelike veiling verkoop wat nadat ek verneem het ook die burgemeester se motor ingesluit het.
    Van die amptenare het later topposte in die groter Munisipaliteit beklee wat daartoe gelei het dat talle blanke amptenare besluit het op vroeg af te tree, veral toe dit duidelik word dat die swart amptenare al hul pensioengeld onttrek het van die fonds waaraan hul behoort het.
    Dit is daarna aangewend vir die aankoop van privaat motors ens. Na inlywing is daar aangedring op lidmaatskap van blanke munisipale pensioenfondse met dieselfde voordele.
    Toe dit rugbaar word het duisende blanke amptenare hul fondse laat oorplaas en dit later onttrek uit vrees dat hul benadeel sou word.
    Hieruit is dit duidelik dat elke storie nie twee maar drie kante het; jou kant, my kant en tussenin die waarheid.
    Daar lê dus iets meer agter die Stellenbosch-betogings as blote taal. Afrikaans word nog steeds beskou as die taal van die verdrukker en net soos Isis die geskiedenis wil uitvee van die wêreldtoneel so moet alles wat herinner aan die apartheidsverlede uitgewis word.
    Dit gaan dus oor meer as net taal. Lees gerus F W de Klerk se 'FW: ‘Hou op skuldig voel en verset julle’ wat in Netwerk 24 (Rapport)verskyn het op Sondag 31 Mei 2015.

  • Hélène Lewis

    Ek was onlangs (Junie '15) in Rwanda. Rwanda het in '94 'n 'genocide' gehad. Dit was nag. Ons in SA - Freedom!
    Rwanda het 3 universiteite gehad in '94. In 2015 het hulle 60 NUWE tersiëre inrigtings bygekry (hulle noem almal 'universiteite'). En ons?
    Laat mens nogal dink nê.

  • Eerstens wil ek Lovelyn gelukwens met haar duidelike uiteensetting van hoe sy en baie ander mede-Maties in 2015 ons 'alma mater' ervaar het. Ek sien daarna uit om na haar, Breyten Breytenbach en die Rektor te luister op die Konvokasievergadering 26 Januarie 2016.
    Ek is 'n trotse Matie van die 70's. Dit is vir my 'n openbaring om te sien hoe ver, maar tog hoe min, die debat oor onderrig in Afrikaans op US oor die afgelope 4 dekades gevorder het. As 'n Engelssprekende Suid-Afrikaner het ek aanvanklik gesukkel, veral met tegniese terminologie, om by te kom. Daar was altyd lektore en klasmaats byderhand om te help.
    In 2015, 38 years after last graduating I had the privilege to return to study at Stellenbosch again. It was not only a rejuvenating experience in what is today a very different and transformational institution but, in this internet and digital/ technological age, a much more accessible learning environment in which any language or communication issues were easily and quickly overcome.
    Surely in 2016 we should all be celebrating our common humanity at Stellenbosch and at all campuses around our country. If we allow the prejudices and artificial barriers of the past to be re-erected we will be denying ourselves and future generations of students the opportunity to live in racial and linguistic harmony. Only in this way can we fulfill our full potential as responsible Maties and citizens of South Africa and the World.

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