Volkstaat (Afrikaans for "People's state") is a proposal for the establishment of a homeland for Afrikaners. Outside a possible use of force, the South African Constitution and International Legislation present certain possibilities for the establishment of such a state. The South African regime declared that they would not support a Volkstaat, but "would do everything they could to ensure the protection of the Afrikaner language and culture". What a fine job they are doing.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Interview With Volkstaat Council Chair

Interview With Volkstaat Council Chair Johann Wingard by David Storobin, Esq.

David Storobin is a New York lawyer who received Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from Rutgers University School of Law. His Master's Thesis (M.A. - Comparative Politics) deals with the historical causes for the rise of Islamic fundamentalism. He is also currently on the Board of Directors of the Ibn Khaldun Center for International Research (www.centroik.ufm.edu.gt) at the University of Francisco Marroquin in Guatemala. He's been interviewed on radio and cited in books as a political expert.

Q: What were the recommendations of the Council?

A: The Council produced several interim reports as well as a voluminous final report, which summarized the large number of individual monographs and specialist committee reports that were presented to the government from 1994 though 1999. A golden thread was the concept of internal self-determination, which was proposed as a proven device to ensure the support of ethnic minority groups -- so essential for political stability and economic development. Their three key points were:

  • Areas where Afrikaners form a natural majority, should enjoy territorial self-determination at second and third tier government levels. These were demarcated. The Northwestern Cape was also mentioned as a potential area. Another was around Pretoria where more than four hundred thousand Afrikaners are living in the northern, eastern and southern Pretoria district and contiguous areas. An independent national state was not envisioned, but a province or federal state was recommended.
  • The Government was requested to urgently attend to the establishment of a representative Afrikaner Council, which would be an advisory body acting as the constitutional instrument through which Afrikaners would have some corporate input into state affairs, especially on matters that affect them intimately. Representation in parliament, where numerical power is all that mattered, was not seen as a democratic system for minorities.
  • The Government was requested to enact the necessary legislation as soon as possible to implement those recommendations. The council drafted the legislation for the establishment of an Afrikaner Council.

Q: How did the ANC government treat the Council when it existed? How was the Council disbanded?

The Government was never serious about the Council's work. At government official level we were regarded as fellow civil servants, merely doing a job. For serious negotiations, we were palmed off to strange facilitators. One such person being a German financial broker, another one being an emiritus professor of theology and arch liberalist. During a meeting with Pres. Nelson Mandela in the company of Genl Viljoen, I handed the Council's First Interim Report to Mandela. I wanted to discuss the contents, but Mandela was only concerned about agricultural projects for Mozambique and Tanzania, which he discussed with Viljoen. The media cameras were waiting outside. With myself and Viljoen at his side, he assured the world that Afrikaners were not such bad people after all and that he received the Council's report. He promised that the ANC would seriously consider the question of a Volkstaat! One big public relations exercise! That's it!

At other official encounters between the Council and the Government, we usually discussed administrative procedures, with Cyril Ramaphosa, Chairman of the Constitutional Council, who was co-ordinating the drafting of the final constitution. The only time that the ANC showed any interest in our work was at an encounter with a constitutional committee headed by Essop Pahad (now Minister of the Presidency). At that encounter we tabled an interim report and proposed that a tenth province be created where Afrikaners would be in a natural majority. Storming out of the committee room, he accused the Freedom Front of negotiating in bad faith. The press were waiting in the media briefing room, where he delivered a tirade of anti-Afrikaner clich├Ęs and rejected out of hand the concept of territorial self-determination as a return to apartheid.

The ANC regarded the Volkstaat Council as a 'sick joke', to paraphrase one of the leading black intellectuals during his address to the Council. Instead of defusing a constitutional deadlock, they deceived ethnic Afrikaners with empty promises of self-determination. The council's budget was simply terminated, but the Council was never formally disbanded. Not a single action resulting from the Volkstaat Council's reports emanated from the ANC government. I doubt if any government official ever opened any of our reports to read them. Thousands of high quality manhours were spent, but the ANC unashamedly reneged on the accord they made with General Viljoen to make a peaceful transition of power possible.

Q: What were/are the views of the Democratic Alliance [liberal representing mostly non-Afrikaner whites], New National Party [came out of the National Party, but became much more liberal and represented liberal white Afrikaners], Conservative Party [represented conservative Afrikaners until it joined Freedom Front], Freedom Front [slightly more moderate than the Conservative Party], AWB [extremist Afrikaner Resistence Movement], Inkatha [represents the Zulu tribe], PAC [represents radical Blacks who are usually hostile to Whites] and other parties on the Council and its recommendation? Who was most supportive and most hostile?

A: Naturally the FF was the most supportive, but, when it mattered most, they failed to provide a solid political platform for the Council's recommendations for self determination in the Pretoria area. The National Party was silent, but supported the concept of corporate self-determination via a representative council for Afrikaners. The CP accused the Council members as traitors to the cause of Afrikaners and warned that nothing could emerge from the Council's endeavours as the ANC were hell bent on a centralised phylosophy of Africanization. The AWB were not a factor. Inkatha was very sympathetic and I had useful discussions with [Zulu and Inkatha leader] Dr. Buthelezi in Cape Town. The Democratic Party [which later merged with the Federal Alliance to form the Democratic Alliance party], as it was at the time, did not support the Council's 'ethnic' approach as they were the great protagonists of the liberal dream, where the individual is placed above group interests. However, for tactical reasons, they were not vehemently outspoken.

In short, the Council was short-changed on political support and subsequently allowed to peter out.

Q: Do you have any hopes of any significant recommendations being implemented?

A: No. Afrikaners will have to shed blood for any form of self-determination, as elsewhere in the world. They were sold a pup with that constitutional mechanism. The African psyche only respects credible power. Having dismantled all the Afrikaners' power structures over ten years, they do not fear him anymore and need not consider him as anything but a useful tax base.

Q: Are you hopeful about Afrikaners gaining independence or autonomy in any part of the RSA?

A: No. The only way to achieve that aim is the African way. Civil war. Africanism is as absolute as Mohammedism [Islam]. Afrikaners are regarded as the lawful prey after a fair power contest. They were overpowered "democratically" and should now keep quiet while their assets are being distributed in the name of Black empowerment, whilsts their objected-to Western culture is being desimated.

Q: What made the NP surrender Afrikaner political power, even though they were backed by nuclear weapons, as well as Africa's strongest military, intelligence services and economy?

A: After the Anglo-Boer war of 1899-1902, the Boer leaders were confronted by the British negotiators. The Boers had nothing to bring to the table, other than integrity and guts. Their economy was destroyed. They have lost one third of their women and children in those awful concentration camps, which were nothing other than a system of ethnic cleansing. Nearly a hundred years later, Afrikaners were a superpower in African terms. As you say, they were a nuclear power and had a world wide intelligence system that functioned well. Their negotiators had all the hardware of war and supportive stuctures as well as a well functioning economy to bring to the table. What was lacking was integrity and guts, so that they succumbed to a tattered group of terrorists who no longer had the support of a superpower called the Soviet Union.

But during the negotiations, the man who was supposed to be his team's inspiration, was committing adultery in a millionaire's yacht in the Meditteranean Sea with a Greek businessman's wife, whom he later married. His team, headed Roelf Meyer, was already so completely brainwashed by liberal American interests, that they were a pushover for the ANC. I dealt with Meyer when he was the responsible cabinet minister for the Volkstaat Council. Sorry to say, I would not have employed him to buy me a truck, let alone to negotiate the sovereignty of a proud people like the Boer-Afrikaners. The unmandated negotiators disregarded the fact that no government or group of officials can legally alienate the inherent sovereignty of a people as an accepted international law.

Pressure from the business sector is an objective factor that should not be ignored. Ethnicity is a centrifugal force that tends to separate people, causing them to compete for resources, but the economy and sport are centripetal forces which tend to unite peoples and their interests. Business therefore saw Afrikaner ethnicity as a divisive issue to be downplayed. The pressures of big business on the negotiation process should never be underestimated. Business reckoned that they would co-opt black politicians in the same manner as they co-opted white politicians in the past, So, why not change governments as expediently as possible?



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