Designer of South Africa's current national flag dies aged 79

Fred Brownell, the man credited with designing South Africa’s post-apartheid flag, has died at the age of 79 at his home in Pretoria late last week.

South Africa’s Arts and Culture Minister, Nathi Mthethwa, described Brownell as one of the country’s “greatest patriots and national hero. “In his lifetime Fred Brownell designed many coats of arms & flags including the flag for Namibia,” the Minister added.

The South African flag he designed 25 years ago, symbolizes the convergence of different cultures into one unified country. The country was just transiting from the apartheid-era when Mandela had been released from jail.

The flag was adopted on April 27 1994 at the beginning of the first post-apartheid elections. It replaced the flag that had been used since 1928.

A press statement by the Minister said he was “distraught to learn of the passing of a true South African hero whose named is etched in the history of post-democratic South Africa.”

The statement added in part: “The name “Fred Brownell” is the one that is synonymous with the journey taken by this fledgling democracy in the role he played in designing and producing the flag of post-democratic South Africa.”

PRESS STATEMENT: ArtsCultureSA Minister NathiMthethwaSA ‘s Statement On The Passing Of the Patriot Who Designed The National Flag- Mr Fred Brownell. SAgovnews #IAmTheFlag ?? pic.twitter.com/7msqS0ZoyY— Arts & Culture (ArtsCultureSA) May 12, 2019

South Africans celebrated Brownell’s achievement on social media by sending condolence tweets.

“We will always cherish you through your wonderful creation & you will be forever celebrated whenever South Africa & South Africans do well,” one Twitter user wrote.

Below are some tweets on the passing of Fred Brownell

Fred Brownell, who designed South Africa’s post-apartheid flag, has died at the age of 79. The flag symbolizes the convergence of different cultures into one unified country. He also designed the flag of Namibia. South Africa’s arts minister has hailed him as a “true hero.” pic.twitter.com/iq56xWxFHh— Geoffrey York (@geoffreyyork) May 12, 2019

Rest in eternal glory Dr. Fred Brownell! You branded a new, winning nation, & you gifted us a bright & vibrant new beginning.
We will always cherish you through your wonderful creation & you will be forever celebrated whenever South Africa & South Africans do well. pic.twitter.com/sHDU9FnbIL— MR SSL (@Mr_Sisulu) May 12, 2019

Fred Brownell submitted his design to Roelf Meyer, the government’s Chief Negotiator who took it to his then MYANC counterpart & the now current president, President CyrilRamaphosa who then consulted late President uTata Madiba for his approval of the flag. pic.twitter.com/DD2ZRrLwfL— Min. Nathi Mthethwa (@NathiMthethwaSA) May 12, 2019

Rest in peace Fred Brownell, the designer of the South African national flag, who sadly passed away at his home in Pretoria on Friday evening at the age of 79. Condolences to his family and loved ones. ???❤ ?: Waldo Swiegers pic.twitter.com/lEgk4BTQ63— Ulrich Janse van Vuuren (@UlrichJvV) May 12, 2019

Fred Brownell, who designed South Africa’s post-apartheid flag, has died at the age of 79. The flag symbolizes the convergence of different cultures into one unified country. He also designed the flag of Namibia. South Africa’s arts minister has hailed him as a “true hero.” pic.twitter.com/iq56xWxFHh— Geoffrey York (@geoffreyyork) May 12, 2019

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