The State President F.W. de Klerk issues a proclamation adopting the new national flag and National Anthem of SA

The South African flag Image source

Wednesday, 20 April 1994

In terms of section 248 (1) of the Interim 1994 Constitution, and acting on the advice of the Transitional Executive Council (TEC), former State President F W de Klerk issued a proclamation on 20 April 1994, providing for Die Stem van Suid-Afrika (the Call of South Africa) and Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika (God bless Africa) to become the combined national anthem of the country. This proclamation, which was published in the Government Gazette, also provided for the adoption of the new national flag.

Die Stem and Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika are songs which are both deeply rooted in the history of South Africa. Die Stem was sung on official occasions from 1928, and Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika was first sung publicly in 1899.

The new South African flag is one of the 'youngest' flags and is the only six-coloured national flag in the world. The flag was first flown on 10 May 1994, the day Nelson Mandela became president - two weeks after the country's first democratic elections on 27 April 1994.


  1. Napier, C (date unknown). Symbols and symbolism [online], available at: (accessed 14 April 2009)
  2. About South Africa, National symbols [online], available at: (accessed 14 April 2009)

Last updated : 18-Apr-2017

This article was produced for South African History Online on 16-Mar-2011