On the penultimate day of January, the FW de Klerk Foundation – founded by former President of South Africa and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Frederik Willem de Klerk – held a gala dinner in Cape Town. This event commemorates and celebrates a memorable day in South African history. On February 2nd, 1990, then President FW de Klerk, made his (now) famous speech announcing Nelson Mandela’s release from prison. This speech began a constitutional transformation in the country, resulting in the establishment of its modern constitutional democracy.
February 2nd, 2020, marks 30 years since this groundbreaking speech. Michaela Bakala attended the gala dinner along with many distinguished representatives of social and political life, such as members of the diplomatic corps and friends of the Foundation. Michaela and Zdenek feel especially moved by Nelson Mandela and his life’s work. They also made time to take part in commemorating the 100th anniversary of his birth, in Washington last year.
A traditional part of the Gala is the awarding of the FW de Klerk Goodwill Prize, given this year to well-known political economist and journalist Moeletsi Mbeki. The gala dinner culminated in the auction of five exclusive items, among which was a unique set of nine wines from the Klein Constantia Winery archives, donated by Michaela and Zdenek Bakala, who is a co-owner of this famous South African winery. Michaela auctioned off this year’s featured item – a framed replica of the Cape Argus newspaper front page from February 2nd, 1990 signed by FW de Klerk, who donated it to the auction. All proceeds will be dedicated to financing the activities of the Foundation and its Centre for Constitutional Rights.