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The current political climate is so volatile and aggressive, that it is sometimes difficult to remember that we are still undergoing a process of reconciliation. Although that process may not be as prominent these days, it remains an essential part of nation-building and the social compact.
We were gently reminded of the hard work being done by ordinary South Africans to overcome the past, in a story about bomb victim Olga Macingwane and bomber Stefaans Coetzee.
While our president was defending his controversial Nkandla development and ANC members were threatening to assault and murder each other over nomination lists, while we listen to yet another harrowing day of Marikana testimony and the Northern Cape leadership is torn apart by allegations of fraud, Macingwane and Coetzee sat down quietly to talk peace.
It was indeed a healing experience for them both. And it led to Macingwane steering the Worcester Hope and Reconciliation Process, which has, in turn, led to her receiving an important award for her efforts. We congratulate her.
It seems it’s much more common, in the South Africa of the moment, to fight it out, rather than find a way forward. We should be ashamed.