One Facebook user shared screenshots from the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) Facebook and Twitter timelines, showing that the flag graphic they use in marketing material differs slightly from the country’s flag.
Our flag, designed by Frederick Brownell in March 1994, has horizontal bands red and blue bands of equal width ad the top and bottom, respectively, separated by a central green band which splits into a horizontally “Y” shape.
The “Y” section embraces a black triangle from which the arms are separated by narrow yellow bands. Both the red and blue bands are separated from the green band and its arms by two narrow white stripes.
The flag in DA’s marketing material, however, has an extra white strip between the green and the gold.
Spot the mistake
See it here: https://t.co/69ZDO79jEJ
— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) March 24, 2019
Even though the popular belief is that the green strip is meant to symbolize the fertility of the land and the gold represents the nation’s mineral wealth, Brownell explains in Convergence and Unification: The National Flag of South Africa (1994) that the colours themselves have no essential meaning.
Nevertheless, the reaction to this news is quite interesting. Some netizens laughed at the irony, others said the DA’s version of the flag is beautiful, while yet another person threatened to sue the Facebook user who shared the information.
However, one netizen pointed out that a national flag is not to be changed to suit a party (or company’s) marketing strategy. Another added:
“This is treason..finish and klaar.”
It’s unclear whether the DA changed the flag intentionally to match their logo, or whether it’s a just a design faux pas. We reached out to the DA and await comment.
The Government Gazette Vol 432 of June 2001, included rules for treating and displaying the flag. For example, the flag “must not touch the floor,” or “be draped in front of a platform.
Addressing the community!
"SA is facing a critical energy crisis we have not seen since the dawn of our democracy.
— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) March 23, 2019