So "freedom" is a bit after my time. I never had to learn the new national anthem and don't intend on doing so. The mixture of 3 versions of national anthems mangled into one confuses the hell out of me, not to mention foreigners watching the spectacle at international events.
If our beloved government is so focussed on creating a rainbow nation that stands together as one, then why, oh why the division in our national anthem? The irony smacks you right in the face! I think 20 years of confusion and division is enough now. Perhaps a brand new national anthem, representative of the collective vision of this country is long overdue. And will it be so bad to have one anthem in one representative language like English? At least the countries we are wooing to become economic partners with and who we look at for financial backup will take us seriously for a change. Where ever you go these days you seem to pretty much get along fine in English, even in Japan where the ANC tenderpreneurs are desperately trying to get in the backdoor. We'll never satisfy everybody in this country by favouring one of the 11 official languages but we can attempt to polish our international image a bit if economic growth and taking part in global wealth-building is our vision. The Oscar Pistorius trial has made headline news internationally and the proceedings all took place in English. Where a person spoke another language, a translator was brought in to translate into English (albeit not of very high standards). We share our dirty laundry in the language most widely used as second language internationally i.e. English, but we want to impress with a muddled-up cacophony for a national anthem.
And to top it all, we'll have a whole bunch of happy Nigerians residing in our green pastures seeing that English is Nigeria's official language!
I know we are a far cry from a rainbow nation if one looks at the catastrophe our parliament is in and crime doesn't even shock us anymore, but really, we could start by eliminating the obvious obstacle to being a united nation, our utterly dividing national anthem. Both versions of Die Stem and Nkosi bear reminders of a very dark past. The words may represent unity and prosperity but the connotations don't.
Just a thought...