Flag of South Africa

The current South African flag is a new one which replaced the original flag that was in use since 1928. Taken from the designs of Frederick Brownell (State Herald), the current national flag is now the symbol of South Africa’s new democracy. The whole design of the flag symbolizes the convergence of both the South African’s past and future.

The flag has four colors; red, blue, green, black, white and yellow. The African flag is composed of one red and blue stripe (of the same width) placed on the upper portion and lower portion, respectively. Both colors are divided in the center by a horizontal Y-shaped green stripe which opens into a black-colored isosceles triangle on the left portion. A tiny yellow stripe forming the same shape as the triangle serves as a division between the Y-shape and the triangle. All the colors red, green and blue are separated by a narrow stripe of white.

The principal colors and design of the African flag all have meaningful representations in the history of South Africa. But while other countries attach personalized meanings to the symbols and colors of their respective flags, the colors of the South Africa flag do not have official interpretations. The black, green and gold appearing in the new flag had once been integrated into the flags of South African Liberation movements. They symbolize the black population. Likewise, the colors green, blue, red and white, which signify the white population, have British, Dutch and Boer undertones. It is also believed that the Y-shape green stands for the unity of the African ethnic minorities and its bright future ahead toward a united South Africa.

The present South African flag was approved as the new national flag of South Africa at the commencement of its 1994 general election. What is most unique about the flag is that it is the only flag in the world containing six colors as the primary colors.

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