Lovelyn Chidinma Nwadeyi has delivered yet another thought-provoking piece on life in South Africa…urging many of us to listen in 2016 and give those who need to talk, to cry, or to be angry the chance to do just that.
Speaking on Tuesday evening at the annual meeting of the Stellenbosch University (SU) Convocation, Lovelyn said “something is brewing in South Africa. I don’t know the name of that something, but I know it is irreversible and will continue to brew and boil over whether we give it the permission to do so or not.”
The SU PhD Political Science candidate said “perhaps we are realising that there was no rainbow to start with…”
In a powerful and emotionally-charged speech – titled “Courage, Compassion and Complexity: Reflections on the new Matieland and the new South Africa” – Lovelyn broke down momentarily as she said “tonight however it is difficult for me to talk about courage or compassion…I am painfully reflecting on the new Stellenbosch and the new South Africa…”
She said perhaps there was no rainbow to begin with and that forgiveness was called for too soon, before apologies had even been made.
“I look forward to the day that I don’t have to talk to my children about racism or sexism…that is really my dream for South Africa” she said, but to get to that dream, to reclaim our humanity and achieve closure “we need to know about the roles we need to play…those who must listen, must listen; those who need the chance to cry must be allowed to cry; those who need to be angry must be allowed to be angry; those who need to talk must be allowed to talk…
“But none of us gets to claim an easy victory because there’s no victory in our collective pain, there is only closure…and South Africa desperately needs closure.”
Lovelyn Nwadeyi – “Courage, Compassion and Complexity…”
Lovelyn was born in Nigeria and raised in Queenstown, Eastern Cape. She’s fluent in Xhosa, Igbo, Afrikaans and English; and completed a Masters in Peace and Conflict Studies at Uppsala University in 2014 and a BA International Studies at SU in 2012.
Read More from Lovelyn:
- My Thoughts on Phobias…and What’s Taking Place in South Africa (following xenophobic attacks)
- Stellenbosch following the #FeesMustFall marches
Watch Video: The Power of Unity – #FeesMustFall
Lovelyn’s speech includes much about Stellenbosch and South Africa. Here’s footage from the #feesmustfall march in late October 2014, captured by film students Ethan Storm, Rebecca Furlong, Nick Riley and Silo Sithole. Ethan told SAPeople at the time – “The togetherness and unity we all felt that day will stay with us for all of our lifetimes. It’s incredible what we can achieve as a nation when we stand as one.”