Today in History: FW de Klerk announces Nelson Mandela's release and unbans numerous ...

- | 8 months ago

On this day in 1990, President FW de Klerk announced that Nelson Mandela would be released from prison, and that the ANC, PAC, SACP and other liberation movements would be unbanned.

At the time of the announcement, in Cape Town, Archbishop Desmond Tutu was at St George’s Cathedral with his congregation, ready to celebrate an event he considered to be as close as possible to the Second Coming. The announcement to release Mandela and unban the African National Congress (ANC), Pan Africanist Congress (PAC), the South African Communist Party (SACP) and other liberation movements was received with mixed feelings inside and outside Parliament.

South Africans celebrated the news as they were optimistic that the country was finally taking a turn for the better.

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