«Passport of Patriotism Table of Contents Topic Pages Foreword Our Constitution 2 The Preamble of our Constitution 3 The National Flag 4 The National ...»
The National Identity
Passport of Patriotism
Table of Contents
Our Constitution 2
The Preamble of our Constitution 3
The National Flag 4
The National Flag Etiquette 5
The National Anthem 6
History of the National Anthem 7
The National Coat of Arms 8
The Provincial Coats of Arms 9
The National Animal 10 The National Flower 11 The National Tree 12 The National Bird 13 The National Fish 14 The National Orders 15 The Order of Mapungubwe 16 The Order of Baobab 16 The Order of the Companions of OR Tambo 16 The Order of Luthuli 17 The Order of Mendi 17 The Order of Ikhamanga 17 The Mace 18 The Black Rod 18 The Parliamentary Emblem 19 The African Union (AU) Flag 20 The African Union Anthem 21
MINISTER’S FOREWORDSouth Africa is a country of unique and original national symbols and its flag is one of the most recognizable in the world.
With the re-issuing of this booklet, we are speed- ing up the program to heighten awareness and consciousness of our national symbols.
This booklet includes many of our important sym- bols that define our national identity and promote nation building to inspire pride in being a South Afri- can. The importance of being a citizen of this great nation is when all our people are a living expression of our constitutional values, principles and ideals.
As part of the celebration of the 20th anniversary of democracy and freedom milestone, we are proud to include details of our Constitution and that of the African Union (AU). The former has been hailed as an important document throughout the world.
The latter reminds us of our Africanness, primarily, before being citizens of the world.
This booklet is an invitation to all our people and the whole world to join us as we show our identity to all. We are sharing with the entire human family the world over our historical narrative as a nation which evolved from one epoch to the next.
We are boldly asserting our unity in diversity as South Africans, !KE E: /XARRA //KE.
Hon. EN Mthethwa, MP Minister of Arts and Culture This booklet belongs to ___________________________________
a proud citizen of South Africa and an ambassador of the national symbols.
Our Constitution The Constitution was drafted in terms of Chapter 5 of the interim Constitution (Act 200 of 1993) and was first adopted by the Constitutional Assembly on 8 May 1996. It was signed into law on 10 December 1996.
The process of drafting the Constitution involved many South Africans in the largest public participation programme ever carried out in South Africa.
After nearly two years of intensive consultations, political parties represented in the Constitutional Assembly negotiated the formulations contained in the text, which are an integration of ideas from ordinary citizens, civil society and political parties represented in and outside of the Constitutional Assembly.
This Constitution represents the collective wisdom of the South African people and has been arrived at by general agreement.
To this extent, the Preamble of the Contitution encapsulates the dreams and aspirations of the people of South Africa.
2 The Preamble of our Constitution We, the people of South Africa, Recognise the injustices of our past;
Honour those who suffered for justice and freedom in our land;
Respect those who have worked to build and develop our country; and Believe that South Africa belongs to all who live in it, united in our diversity.
We therefore, through our freely elected representatives, adopt this Constitution as the supreme law of the Republic
so as to:
• Heal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights;
• Lay the foundations for a democratic and open society in which government is based on the will of the people and every citizen is equally protected by law;
• Improve the quality of life of all citizens and free the potential of each person; and
• Build a united and democratic South Africa able to take its rightful place as a sovereign state in the family of nations.
May God protect our people.
Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika. Morena boloka setjhaba sa heso.
God seën Suid-Afrika. God bless South Africa.
Mudzimu fhatutshedza Afurika. Hosi katekisa Afrika.
The unique central design of the flag, which begins as a “V” at the flag-post and comes together in the centre of the flag, extending further as a single horizontal band to the outer edge of the fly, can be seen as representing the convergence of diverse elements in South African society, which then take the road ahead in unison. This idea also links up with the motto of the new National Coat of Arms, namely !ke e: /xarra //ke, in the language of the /Xam San people, which literally means “diverse people unite”.
• The Flag must not touch the floor or the ground.
• The Flag must be not used as a tablecloth or be draped in front of a platform.
• The Flag must not be used to cover a statue, plaque, cornerstone, etc. at unveiling or similar ceremonies.
• The Flag must not be used to start or finish any competition, race or similar event
•When it is displayed horizontally against a wall, the hoist should be to the left of the spectator and the red band uppermost.
•When the National Flag is displayed vertically against a wall, the red band should be to the left of the spectator with the hoist or the cord seam uppermost.
Morena boloka setjhaba sa heso, (God protect our nation) O fedise dintwa le matshwenyeho, (End all wars and tribulations) O se boloke, O se boloke setjhaba sa heso, (Protect us, protect our nation) Setjhaba sa South Afrika - South Afrika (Our nation South Africa - South Africa) Uit die blou van onse hemel, (Ringing out from our blue heavens) Uit die diepte van ons see, (From the depth of our seas) Oor ons ewige gebergtes, (Over our everlasting mountains) Waar die kranse antwoord gee, (Where the echoing crags resound) Sounds the call to come together, And united we shall stand, Let us live and strive for freedom, In South Africa our land.
History of the National Anthem:
•The National Anthem was proclaimed in 1997.
•It is a shortened, combined version of two anthems (‘Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika’ and ‘The Call of South Africa’/’Die Stem van Suid-Afrika’); sung between 1994 and 1997.
•It is unique in that it is sung in five languages.
•’Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika’ was composed in 1897 by Enoch Sontonga, a Methodist mission schoolteacher.
•The poet Samuel Mqhayi later added seven additional stanzas in isiXhosa.
•A Sesotho version was published by Moses Mphahlele in 1942.
•‘Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika’ became a popular church hymn that was later adopted as an anthem at political meetings and was sung as an act of defiance during the apartheid years.
•’Die Stem van Suid-Afrika’ is a poem written by CJ Langenhoven in May 1918, with music composed in 1921 by the Reverend ML de Villiers.
•It was first sung publicly at the official hoisting of the national flag in Cape Town on 31 May 1928.
•It was not until 2 May 1957 that government pronounced Die Stem as the official national anthem of South Africa.
•In 1952, the official English version, ‘The Call of South Africa’, was accepted for official use.
Protocol on resPecting the national anthem
•The National Anthem should be recited with appropriate respect.
•All should stand to attention with their hands placed at their sides while singing the National Anthem.
•Civilians should take their hats off as a sign of respect.
Above the bird is the rising sun, a force that gives life while representing the flight of darkness and the triumph of discovery, knowledge and understanding of things that have been hidden, and illuminating the new life that is coming into being.
Below the bird is the protea, an indigenous flower of South Africa, which represents beauty, the aesthetic harmony of all its cultures, and South Africa flowering as a nation. The ears of wheat are emblems of the fertility of the land. The elephant tusks symbolise wisdom, steadfastness and strength.
At the centre stands a shield, which signifies the protection of South Africans from one generation to the next. Above it is a spear and a knobkierie. Together, they assert the defence of peace rather than a posture of war. This shield of peace, which also brings to mind an African drum, conveys the message of a people imbued with a love of culture.
Contained within the shield are some of the earliest representations of humanity in the world. Those depicted were the very first inhabitants of the land, namely the Khoisan people.
These figures are derived from images on the Linton Stone, a world-famous example of South African rock art.
The motto - !KE E: /XARRA //KE, written in the Khoisan language of the /Xam people, means ‘diverse people unite’.
8 The Provincial Coats of Arms
The National Animal is the SPRINGBOK (Antidorcas marsupialis). This species has adapted to the dry, barren areas and open grass plains and is thus found especially in the Free State and North West Province, and in the Karoo up to the west coast. They move in small herds during winter, but often crowd together in bigger herds in summer.
They breed throughout the year and lambs are born after a six-month gestation period.
The National Tree is the REAL YELLOWWOOD (Podocarpus latifolius), found from Table Mountain, along the southern and eastern Cape coast, in the ravines of the Drakensberg up to the Blouberg and the Soutpansberg in Limpopo. The Yellowwood family is primeval and has been present in this part of Africa for more than 100 million years. The crown is relatively small in relation to its height and is often covered with grey lichen.
The National Fish is the GALJOEN (Coracinus capensis), which is found only along the South African coast. It keeps to mostly shallow water, is often found in rough surf and sometimes right next to the shore. The Galjoen is a familiar sight for anglers. Its diet consists mainly of red bait (ascidians), small mussels and barnacles. It is also known in KwaZulu-Natal as blackfish or black bream.
14 The National Orders National Orders are the highest awards that a country, through its President, bestows on its citizens and eminent foreign nationals.
The new National Orders were conceived in the spirit of nation building and social cohesion. The
objectives of the new designs are:
• To reflect the ethos and values of the rich divesity of South African traditions.
• To include indigenous symbols and systems of awards.
• To redress imbalances created by the past policies.
National Orders are awarded once a year during the National Orders Awards Ceremony hosted by the Presidency.
The Order of the Baobab is awarded to South African citizens for distinguished service. It is an award for contributions in
the following areas:
•Business and the economy
•Science, medicine and technological innovation
The Order of the Companions of O R Tambo is awarded to foreign nationals (Heads of State and Government) and other foreign dignitaries. It is awarded for friendship shown to South Africa. It is therefore an order of peace, co-operation and active expression of solidarity and support.
16 The Order of Luthuli is awarded to South Africans who have made a meaningful contribution to the struggle for democracy, human rights, nation-building, justice, peace and conflict resolution.
It symbolises the vision of the late Chief Albert Luthuli - the legendary liberation struggle leader and first African recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1961.
The Order of Mendi for Bravery is awarded to South African citizens who have performed an extraordinary act of bravery that placed their lives in great danger, or who lost their own lives saving or trying to save the life of another person, the life of another person, or by saving property.
The Order of Ikhamanga is awarded to South African citizens who have excelled in the fields of arts, culture, literature, music, journalism and sport.
The Mace was designed to reflect the history, traditions, and diverse cultures and languages of South Africa. The design also celebrates the country’s natural beauty, its plant and animal life and it rich mineral resources.
•The shape of the mace recalls the knobkerrie, an African symbol of defence as well as authority and leadership.
•Gold symbolises not only our country’s natural wealth, but also the indigenous knowledge of Africa and the ancient African gold mining traditions of Mapungubwe.
The Black Rod is the symbol of the authority of the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). The Black Rod reflects the important role of the provinces in the functioning of the NCOP.
The shape of the new Black Rod is in the form of a knobkierie, an African symbol of defence, of authority and leadership. The protea, at the head of the Black Rod, is South Africa’s National flower, and symbolises national pride.
The beadwork reflects on South Africa’s diverse people and its rich cultural heritage. The clasping hands in gold symbolises freedom, peace and cooperation. The black rod stands in a drum when the council is in session. The drum is an expression of the African tradition of drums calling people to gather and speak. It is also symbolic of our achievement of democracy through dialogue.
18 The Parliamentary Emblem Parliament launched its new emblem during a Joint Sitting of the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces.