Cover, indicating the name " Living on the Political Edge - Villain or Maverick?"
Idea of Miniscule Zulu warrior and the a hero, knight in armoir on horseback slaying 3 headed calf - see 2 cartoons included from photos!
Here is what the book is briefly about:
<p class="MsoNormal"> “LIVING ON THE POLITICAL EDGE –VILLAIN OR
MAVERICK?” Gerda Bekker
unrevised/unedited manuscript “LIVING ON THE POLITICAL EDGE – VILLAIN OR
MAVERICK?” by Gerda Bekker is about the political roller-coaster experiences of Dr Hennie Bekker. It covers a period of 28
years of Dr Bekkers life as Parliamentarian (National Assembly and
Legislature/Provincial Council) in South Africa. The biography contains about 300 A4 pages and
about 35 pages of Annexures/attachments:
remarkable political experiences of Hennie Bekker during the transitional
period of South Africa from an “Apartheid State” to a Democracy, dominated
firstly by the National party and later on by the African National Congress and
its alliance partners, could be a revelation to many readers. Hennie Bekker as
a liberal Afrikaner, yet as a Parliamentarian representing the erstwhile
National Party of PW Botha and FW de Klerk, endeavoured to achieve change and
reform from within the dominant white political Party. When failing to achieve
real change, he joined the traditional/nationalist freedom movement of the
Inkatha Freedom Party of Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, an almost dominant Zulu
political formation, but with principles and policies economically much more
viable than those of the ANC. This change of political allegiance was made
after realising that the so called white politics was outdated and the new ANC rulers
had Marxist/Communist doctrines with which he could not identify. This
political move away from the Apartheid scenario obviously caused a lot of
trauma and the Bekker family faced much abuse and even life threatening onslaughts
as a result thereof.
Bekker played an important role in bringing the Inkatha Freedom Party back into
the Constitutional process of South Africa and particularly its participation
in the first democratic election in 1994. The last minute turn-around of
Inkatha surely saved South Africa from a bloody civil war which could have had
disastrous consequences. Hennie’s defection from “White Politics” to “Black
Politics” had however been met with scorn and insults from many supporters of
the “Apartheid Doctrine” and he was regarded as a “sell-out” and traitor of the
White people of South Africa. His important role in conciliation and achieving
greater understanding between the different races and even between the
governing African National Congress and his political Party, the Inkatha
Freedom Party became legendary and appreciated.
book is a ‘unique’ type of biography written from the perspective of a wife who
was also involved in politics and could hopefully give a different perspective
on stereo typing of the Afrikaner. It
provides an in-depth kaleidoscope of various political parties, competing – but
also sometimes acting in unison.
<p class="MsoNormal"> The biography attempts to break away from the serious
hardnosed style of politics; also capturing the many light-hearted and almost
enjoyable experiences of a politician over such a lengthy and fruitful career.
<p class="MsoNormal"> Inkatha was formed mainly as a cultural
movement but suddenly had to compete in the political milieu of modern
politics. The biography also epitomises the dangers and risks for outspoken and
Dr Bekker’s integrity is unchallenged and he commands respect amongst all the
political parties in South Africa. The villain of White politics, have surely
become the maverick, or hero of the new political dispensation in South
Africa! For that reason, the very appropriate
title of the biography, “LIVING ON THE POLITICAL EDGE – VILLAIN OR MAVERICK?”
<p class="MsoNormal">Dr Hennie Bekker and Nelson Mandela
<p class="MsoNormal">During the Transitional political period of South Africa in 1993 and the establishment of the Transitional Executive Council, Dr Hennie Bekker was nominated by the Inkatha Freedom Party, to serve as Minister on the Transitional Economic Council with Minister Derek Keyes, Trevor Manual, Dr Zack de Beer and Prof Shabalala, collectively forming the Transitional Ministry of Economic Affairs.This Transitional Executive Council replaced the Presidency and the Cabinet of South Africa and was headed by the two Party leaders, Nelson Mandela of the ANC and FW de Klerk of the National Party and although non-partisan was made up of representatives of the various larger political parties.Hennie Bekker would always regard this period of his political career, the highlight of his Parliamentary experience, particularly his encounters with Nelson Mandela and Trevor Manual. Needless to say that after the interim period of the Transitional Executive Council and the first democratic elections of 1994, Nelson Mandela became the President of South Africa and Trevor Manual, the Minister of Trade and Industry and later the Minister of Finance.What a privilege for Hennie Bekker to have served in the same Transitional Executive Council as the legendary President Nelson Mandela!