FMF media release
10 April 2018
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela: “Here lies the drug to coagulate the blood of the bleeding nation…”
… from her 1987 foreword to South Africa: The Solution by Leon Louw and Frances Kendall
Leon Louw with Winnie Mandela at the Sir Ketumile Masire
Free Market Foundation Award* event April 2001
The Free Market Foundation is saddened by the passing of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela with whom executive director Leon Louw and his family had a personal relationship.
Madikizela-Mandela’s highly publicised and controversial political life obscured her social work. She and the Louws collaborated, for example, in the distribution of gardening equipment and food packs to the families of detainees.
Madikizela-Mandela’s grandchildren attended what might have been South Africa’s first truly multiracial primary school, the Montessori Primary School, where they formed firm friendships with Louw and Kendall’s daughters; she regularly attended parents’ days at the school.
While Louw and Madikizela-Mandela did not always agree on policy and strategy, they collaborated in a passionate quest to liberate South Africa from apartheid oppression and racial discrimination.
In the 1987 edition, Madikizela-Mandela wrote a foreword to South Africa: The Solution. She wrote that Louw and Kendall offered South Africa what it needed most, a prosperous and peaceful alternative to racial polarisation and hatred. The book contained “hope for a shattered” country and “the drug to coagulate the blood of the bleeding nation, from a voice white South Africa will listen to without fear”. The book – which advocated decentralisation, free markets, property rights and liberty for all South Africans – went on to become a best seller that influenced the climate of opinion that made a peaceful settlement possible.
In 1986 when The Solution was written, no-one thought apartheid would end before the turn of the century. The FMF was passionate about finding an answer that all could buy into. To this end, discussions were held across the political spectrum resulting in endorsements from a wide range of individuals: Chief Buthelezi, Dirk Hertzog, Minister Eli Louw, Ntatho Motlana, Alan Paton, Helen Suzman, Frederick van Zyl Slabbert, Hendrik F Verwoerd Jr.
Struggle stalwart and the doyen of black business, Dr Sam Motsuenyane, who became FMF’s Honorary Life Vice President, also endorsed The Solution saying, “My fervent wish is that The Solution be read with interest, digested with enthusiasm, and implemented with courage.”
Note to the editor
Below is Madikizela-Mandela’s full foreword, endorsements from those who read The Solution and FMF’s media release on the occasion of Sir Ketumile Masire’s passing
Foreword to South Africa: The Solution (1987)
Frances Kendall’s and Leon Louw’s book South Africa: THE SOLUTION is an extraordinary and long overdue challenge to South Africa to come to terms with the tragic apartheid blunder of a century.
They offer South Africa what she needs most – a broad alternative we have been looking for – and have provided striking evidence to confirm that all is not lost in the political quagmire of racial polarisation and hatred.
In the ensuing impasse, Frances and Leon’s vision is an excellent historical alternative all freedom lovers embrace – a viewpoint which has for the first time stimulated debate and new lines of inquiry from the ‘Afrikaner Volk’, the clan which is normally resistant to new ideas.
Here lies hope for a shattered nation.
Here lie some of the efforts of the African National Congress.
Here lies the drug to coagulate the blood of the bleeding nation, from a voice white South Africa will listen to without fear.
“Amid a sea of anger and tension, The Solution may prove to be a rational, workable answer to South Africa’s unique problems.” Chief Buthelezi
“The Solution is level-headed, practical and concise. It attains as closely as possible to the view that the best government is the least government.” Dirk Hertzog
“I have found the contents most interesting and absorbing. A book worthwhile reading for those dealing with the future of our country.” Minister Eli Louw
“The Solution is an extraordinary and long overdue challenge to South Africa to come to terms with its tragic apartheid blunder of a century. It offers South Africa what she needs most - a broad alternative we have been looking for.” Winnie Mandela
“Every South African should study The Solution and our politicians should apply these very realistic proposals – the only long term solution for South Africa.” Jan S Marais
“I welcome this brilliantly analytical work on the possible solution to the political impasse in our land. We congratulate the authors in forcing South Africans to face up honestly to this major problem in their lives.” Ntatho Motlana
“My fervent wish is that The Solution be read with interest, digested with enthusiasm, and implemented with courage.” Sam Motsuenyane
“As a firm believer in the advantages of a federal constitution…I am pleased that people are taking this book seriously.” Alan Paton
“A solution that is bold but simple. It tells the man in the street that constitutional change is not an Everest to be tackled with masks and oxygen, but a Table Mountain that he himself can climb in his takkies.” Bill Sutton
“An interesting perspective on the way out of the South African dilemma. While one may not agree with the overall conclusions, they are certainly worth serious consideration by students of South Africa.” Helen Suzman
“The Solution raises some provocative and stimulating issues that lie at the core of South Africa’s conflict.” Frederick van Zyl Slabbert
“From the point of view of the Afrikaner as a nation, The Solution as it stands is unacceptable because it does not provide for nations – only for groups. However, it provides an important contribution in breaking away from the dangerous centralized state philosophy, into a direction which will open eyes to other possibilities.” Hendrik F Verwoerd Jr
“This book explains in simple, plain language that an achievable, immediate and full blooded democratic future is possible for all of us.” Marinus Wiechers
*Sir Ketumile Masire, Nelson Mandela and the Free Market Foundation
Ketumile Masire (2001): “This is the time to demonstrate to the world that, as fellow Africans, we are capable of working together so that we can all enjoy peace, freedom and dignity.”
FMF was saddened to hear of the death last week of statesman Sir Ketumile Masire, president of Botswana from 1980 to 1998. Masire is widely credited with transforming Botswana’s economy, and promoting democracy and inclusivity.
Sir Ketumile Masire was the recipient of the FMF’s 2000 Free Market Award for his “exceptional contribution to the cause of economic freedom”, presented in April 2001 at an event attended by Nelson Mandela.
Michael O’Dowd, then-FMF chairman, presenting the award, said: “Some people may think it strange that a free market organisation should be honouring somebody for his acts as the head of a government, but this is not so. It is true, unfortunately, that free market organisations spend a lot of time criticising the actions of governments but they are not opposed to governments as such. On the contrary, we fully realise that free markets can only exist under the aegis of a good government.”
In accepting the award, Masire said: “One of the key initiatives that I took before leaving office was to put in place the process of charting a long-term vision for Botswana.” Critical elements of Masire’s vision included: “…an educated and informed nation; a prosperous, productive and innovative nation; an open, democratic and accountable nation; a moral and tolerant nation…” He added: “This is critical for fostering an environment in which free and uninterrupted economic activity can take place.”
O’Dowd: “Over 35 years, Botswana has had the highest rate of economic growth in Africa ... Botswana has proved that there is nothing about Africa, neither in the character of its people, nor in its traditions, nor in its history, that closes to them the prospect of joining the first world.”
Masire pointed out that an important factor that contributed to Botswana’s sustained economic growth was an “unflinching commitment to public sector reform”. He added: “There is indisputable evidence that … the absence of bureaucracy in the public sector enhances private sector development.”
“Standard international comparisons show Botswana as being the freest economy on the continent of Africa”, noted O’Dowd. “What then did Botswana do right? Botswana maintained all the institutions and practices which constitute a free market economy. It consistently protected and respected property rights and nationalised nothing. This is crucial. It upheld a proper system of law under which contracts are dependably enforceable. It refrained from interfering with the day to day operation of the economy by means of controls and it refrained from setting up grandiose state enterprises as the old South African government did. This has been the road to success followed by every successful economy in the twentieth century, and it was the road followed by Botswana.”
Sir Ketumile Masire, Leon Louw and Nelson Mandela