History of the South African flag

South Africa flag: This is a brief history of the flag, it origins and why it was chosen to represent the country. 

The Flag of South Africa

The South Africa flag was created and designed in March 1994. It was adopted as the official national flag of South Africa on April 27, 1994. This was the beginning of the general election in South Africa. This new flag was used to replace the previous flag that had already been used in this country since 1928. This new flag from South Africa was designed by the State Herald of South Africa, Frederick Brownell. This flag was chosen to represent the new democracy in this country after the apartheid period ends.

The flag of South Africa has two horizontal bands that are located on the flag. These horizontal bands have red color on the top part of the flag and blue color on the bottom part of the flag. Each color has an equal width and ratio. Both colors are separated by the green band at the central part of the flag.

The green band has a horizontal “Y” shape. This shape has the arms at the end of the corners around the hoist side. The “Y” design is clearly visible for all people who are looking at this flag. On the left side of the “Y” shape, you are going to find a black triangle with yellow or gold bands as the borders.

There are 6 different colors that are available in this flag, including red, green, yellow, black, blue, and white. Three of these colors were taken from the Union Jack and the Flag of the South African Republic. The three other colors were taken from the flag from the African National Congress.

Colors of the Flag

At the time of the adoption, the South Africa flag was the only flag in the world that has 6 colors on the primary design. It came without a seal and also a brocade. The colors and design of this flag emphasized the principal elements of the country’s flag history. The unique thing about this design was the “Y” shape. This unique shape has already been maintained since the adoption time until today.

Symbolism

According to the official government information, this flag is a synopsis of some principal elements from the flag’s history. The only symbolism used in the flag is the Y or V shape. This shape can be interpreted as the convergence of some diverse elements within South African society. These diverse elements are taking the road for getting the unity. The meanings and symbolism from the flag are also published in many media, including government publications and also speeches from government officials.

The blue color on this flag represents the color of the sky and also the oceans surrounding the country. The green color will symbolize the farms and the natural environment that will be an essential part of South Africa. The yellow color will emphasize the natural resources in South Africa, for example, gold. It will also emphasize the mineral wealth under the soil or generosity character.

The black color will represent the black South Africans, while the white will represent white South Africans. White will also represent a symbol of peace. The red color is going to show the bravery and strength of any country.

Current Flag

The present national flag from South Africa was flown on April 27th, 1994 for the first time. This was the day of the election day in 1994. The flag was intended to become an interim flag. The design of the flag would be decided in the next couple of weeks after the election day. Some people were responsible for finding the best design or colors from the flag of South Africa.

The choice of this new flag was the result of the negotiation process after Nelson Mandela was released from prison around 1990. South Africa also had a nationwide public competition for getting designs from the Soth Africans. During this period, the National Symbols Commission got more than 7,000 designs.

About 6 designs were chosen and presented to the public and also the Negotiating Council. At that time, Parliament went to become recess at the end of the year of 1993 without finding the new national flag for South Africa.

In February 1994, Roelf Meyer and Cyril Ramaphosa, the negotiators from the African National Congress and also the National party government were responsible for resolving the flag issues. The final design of the flag was adopted on March 15, 1994. This design was derived from a design from the State Herald Fred Brownell. He previously designed the Namibian flag.

The interim flag of South Africa was hoisted for the first time around April 27, 1994. This was the time when the election favored Nelson Mandela. He was inaugurated as the first elected president in South Africa on May 10, 1994. This first flag was received by most South Africans. Though, a small number of people rejected the use of this flag. Some Afrikaner Volksfront members also burned the flag as a protest before the April 1994 election.

In February 1994, Roelf Meyer and Cyril Ramaphosa, the negotiators from the African National Congress and also the National party government were responsible for resolving the flag issues. The final design of the flag was adopted on March 15, 1994. This design was derived from a design from the State Herald Fred Brownell. He previously designed the Namibian flag.

The interim flag of South Africa was hoisted for the first time around April 27, 1994. This was the time when the election favored Nelson Mandela. He was inaugurated as the first elected president in South Africa on May 10, 1994. This first flag was received by most South Africans. Though, a small number of people rejected the use of this flag. Some Afrikaner Volksfront members also burned the flag as a protest before the April 1994 election.

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