09 Jul 2021
His Excellency Mr. Martin Schäfer, the outgoing German Ambassador to South Africa “It has been a long ride. Having served for my second term in South Africa, I will have spent nearly eight years in South Africa, since October 2017 as the German Ambassador. It has also been a wild ride in many ways.
I saw Jacob Zuma being elected as President of the ANC in Polokwane in December 2007 in a landslide. I was here when South Africa hosted guests from around the globe for the FIFA World Cup in that wonderful cold and sunny winter month in 2010, when the rainbow nation seemed to have to come true (and I shed a tear or two when Germany lost to Spain in the semifinals in Durban).
I witnessed Cyril Ramaphosa’s victory at Nasrec in December 2017 and shared the hope of renewal after long years of state capture.
I felt the anxiety and uncertainty of what was to come when President Ramaphosa locked down South Africa in March 2020 to shield us from the deadly Coronavirus pandemic.