A Message for Reconciliation Day

Today, 16 December 2014, we celebrate Reconciliation day, 20 years into our democracy. First off lets remind ourselves of the meaning of reconciliation.


Reconciliation

rɛk(ə)nsɪlɪˈeɪʃ(ə)n/

noun: reconciliation; plural noun: reconciliation

synonyms: reuniting, reunion, bringing (back) together (again), conciliation, reconcilement; More
antonyms: estrangement, alienation, feud, incompatibility
  1. the restoration of friendly relations. “his reconciliation with your uncle”
  2. the action of making one view or belief compatible with another. “any possibility of reconciliation between such clearly opposed positions”
  3. the action of making financial accounts consistent; harmonization. “the reconciliation process should be consistent with the business strategy”

From the definition we can therefore see that reconciliation is about bringing people together. It is very exciting that this past weekend we saw South Africa in the news for good reasons, with Rolene Strauss being crowned Miss World and the Blitz Bokke going to the top of the World Sevens table. Did you by any chance take to social media and see all the positive comments and statements from all people no matter their background? This is reconciliation.

Over the weekend I was thinking about our beautiful country and I realised that I did not know what the Motto for South Africa is. This prompted me to hit Google to find out. I found that our motto is ǃke e: ǀxarra ǁke which is written in the Khoisan language and translates to “diverse people unite”. Our motto talks to our rainbow nation, our motto talks to reconciliation. I therefore urge all South Africans to remember this and whenever you see the coat of arms let it remind you that our countries story is about diversity uniting.

Being the inquisitive person that I am, though, I wondered what the Motto for South Africa used to be. And so I looked this up and found it very interesting. The coat of arms of South Africa from 1910 to 2000 had a motto that was Ex unitate vires, translated as “unity is strength”. This motto was a foretelling declaration. The motto was a sign from 1910 of what was to come that unity is the only way to have strength in our country. We must remember this motto too because as diverse people unite we have strength.

I believe that South Africa is a special nation and that we are blessed with amazing people with amazing gifts and talents. Through the years, with injustice and inequality, there has always been the message of unity in our motto. Through reconciliation we will see our country moving from strength to strength in all spheres, be it economically, culturally, artistically, scientifically and politically.

South Africa is destined for greatness. It starts with you!