Official site of the South African Embassy in Washington DC

Welcome to
South Africa

Thank you for visiting our official website, we hope you will find the information useful, whether you are planning to visit South Africa or are interested in remaining current with the activities of the South African Embassy in Washington, DC. The Mission is committed to inculcating the spirit of Ubuntu and the “Batho Pele” (People First) principles, in the provision of its services; which is reflective of our country’s values of putting humanity central to all that we do. South Africa is open for business and continues to provide a wealth of opportunities for those looking at investing in an emerging market that boosts a stable democracy, incredible infrastructure and world class financial systems.

We remain a premier destination for tourism and always welcome an opportunity to welcome you to our country of beautiful scenery, wildlife, beaches and amazing climate. What is more important however is that you will meet culturally diverse South Africans, waiting to welcome you to our rainbow nation!

Should you need more information, I encourage you to reach out to me and my team through our provided contact details, which you will find on this website.

Ambassador Nomaindiya Mfeketo
South African Embassy in the United States of America

Ambassador’s Heritage Day Message

 

Dear Fellow South Africans,

Heritage Day is a time for us to reflect on our roots, diversity and rich history. It is a day in which we celebrate the various layers and cultures that make-up the fabric of South Africa’s identity.

This year we celebrate Heritage Day under the theme, “Celebrating South Africa’s living human treasures.” This is a theme which reminds us that amongst us we have an abundance of wealth through the women and men who carry knowledge about our deep histories, stories, music, food, medicines, technologies and practices – these are the custodians of our indigenous knowledge systems and ways of life.

Under this theme we are called to recognize these custodians and to value their contributions to our society. In addition to this, therein lies a challenge to preserve indigenous knowledge, pass it along to future generations and elevate its place within our society.

We must remember that we have not always been free to celebrate our diversity since our previous social structures under colonialism and apartheid marginalized the identities, cultures and histories of the people of colour in South Africa. It has been a long and hard journey to reach this pivotal moment and even so, much work still needs to be done to hoist our cultures to their proper place and recognition in South Africa and the world.

Heritage Day and all our national holidays are also tools which we use to foster social-cohesion and extend South Africa’s nation-building project. Through the joint celebration of these days we should be able to look beyond the physical markers that distinguish us and converge on our common experience of being South African!

We celebrate Heritage Day this year still in the context of the global health pandemic, COVID-19, which has disrupted life as we know it and impacted many families due to the loss of loved ones and/ or the economic hardship of income disruption and loss. In our celebrations let us also extend compassion, assistance and support to these members of our community with Ubuntu. These are indeed tough times but we also know that the South African spirit is resilient and unconquerable.  

Finally, we invite all South Africans to #FlyTheFlag wherever you are and take part in the President’s challenge to remember our joy in dance by partaking in the #JerusalemaDanceChallenge. So gather up your family and friends, take a picture of yourselves holding the South African flag or a video of you doing the dance and tag us on our social media platforms.

Happy Heritage Day South Africa, may the beauty of our colourful and rich cultures always ignite a sense of pride within you! Enjoy today and remember to stay safe!

Watch the video here: Heritage Day Message

 

September is Heritage Month

On 24 September, South Africans celebrate the rich heritage, diversity and history of the many cultures that make up the population of South Africa. 

Whilst Heritage Day is celebrated on 24 September, the whole of September is commemorated as Heritage Month and South Africans across the country and diaspora commemorate this occasion through partaking in various recreational activities highlighting cultural tradition, oral history, performance, art, and indigenous knowledge systems.

This year #HeritageMonth will be celebrated under the theme: “Celebrating South Africa’s living human treasures”. In celebrating our living human treasures, we honor the bearers of our indigenous knowledge systems whilst also preserving and highlighting the importance of these systems within our society.

Minister of Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa, launched  the 2020 Heritage Month campaign under the theme, “Celebrating South Africa’s living human treasures”.  

Read: https://bit.ly/326hxhl

Here's the

From the Desk of the President

Monday, 21 September 2020 

The United Nations will this week begin the 75th session of its General Assembly, where the nations of the world gather to seek collective solutions to global challenges.

Read it at: https://bit.ly/2ZRTSzC

Media Statement

South Africa’s Message of Condolence on the passing of US Congressman and Civil Rights Activist, John Lewis

18 July 2020

The Government of South Africa has learned with great sadness about the death of US Congressman and renowned Civil Rights Activist, Mr John Lewis.

On behalf of President Cyril Ramaphosa and the people of South Africa, Minister Pandor expresses condolences to the family and friends of Mr Lewis.

Minister Pandor said Mr Lewis leaves behind him a proud legacy of activism and will forever be remembered for his brave and steadfast fight for equality, justice and dignity for African Americans in the United States and black people everywhere.

Mr Lewis was a Freedom fighter in the United States in the 1960s, at a time when those active in the struggle against racism and for equality were met with violence. In 1965 he led a March for voting rights in Selma, Alabama where he was brutally assaulted by police.

Mr Lewis’ distinguished service to the American people as a Congressman for over thirty years and his unflinching commitment to justice for all has cemented his place as one of the greatest civil rights icons of our time.

Mr Lewis paved the road for African Americans into mainstream politics and former President Obama has stated that his ascendency to being the first African American President would not have been possible if it was not for the activism of Mr Lewis. Mr Lewis contributions to the struggle for human rights was formally recognised when former President Obama awarded Mr Lewis with the United States’ highest civilian honour, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

As a young activist, Mr Lewis identified deeply with the struggles of the African people against colonialism and later with the anti-Apartheid struggle in South Africa. He had the honour of being the first black American to meet former President Nelson Mandela after his release from prison. Mr Lewis sponsored a resolution in the United States Congress in 2018, to mark the 100th birthday of former President Nelson Mandela.

His formidable contributions leaves a legacy that will continue to inspire activists and politicians committed to the ongoing struggle for justice, human rights, dignity and equality for Americans and people in the diaspora.

Enquiries:

Mr Clayson Monyela
Spokesperson for DIRCO
082 884 5974

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

OR Tambo Building
460 Soutpansberg Road
Rietondale
Pretoria
0084

Media Statement

South Africa’s Statement regarding protests in America following the death of Mr George Floyd

02 June 2020

The Government of the Republic of South Africa has observed the protests in the United States of America, following the tragic death of Mr George Floyd.

On behalf of President Cyril Ramaphosa and the people of South Africa, Minister Pandor expresses condolences to the family and friends of Mr George Floyd.

Minister Pandor said: “The violence that has characterised some of the protests seriously detracts from drawing international awareness to the legitimate concerns about violence against defenceless black people and other minorities in America.”

South Africa calls on all in America, especially the security forces to exercise maximum restraint in responding to the anger and frustration felt by many of its citizens’ friends and international partners.

The regrettable death of Mr Floyd presents the USA with an opportunity to address fundamental issues of human rights such as freedom dignity and equality.

Minister Pandor said: “Just as the people of America supported South Africa in its legitimate struggle against apartheid, South Africa too supports the clarion calls for practical action to address the inadequacies highlighted by protesters, civil society and human rights organisations.

“Recalling the steps post-apartheid South Africa bravely undertook as part of its new constitutional dispensation we are convinced that America – a beacon of freedom for many worldwide – has the ability to directly focus on healing and peace and achieve an outcome that prioritises respect for and promotion of fundamental freedoms for all Americans”, Minister Pandor added.

South Africa calls on all leaders to work together to end violence and to develop a set of measures that would serve to end the insecurity and harm experienced by many members of the African American community.

Enquiries:

Mr Clayson Monyela
Spokesperson for DIRCO
082 884 5974

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

OR Tambo Building
460 Soutpansberg Road
Rietondale
Pretoria
0084

Repatriation

The Embassy of South Africa in Washington, DC is proud to have assisted nearly one thousand South Africans to return home on our repatriation flights.

Please

Consular Services

The Embassy of South Africa is responsible for the states of Alabama, District of Colombia, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Texas, Virginia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

White House Tour

The Embassy of South Africa cannot arrange tours of the White House for South African citizens. The US Department of State has advised us that, at present access for foreign citizens to White House tours as part of an Embassy-sponsored public tour group, is on hold. We are therefore unable to process any requests at this time. We will post an update to the website immediately if conditions change.

Visiting the South African Embassy

There are no parking facilities for the public at the Embassy, although street parking spaces sometime can be found nearby. However, if you plan to visit the Embassy for consular services, please plan to arrive by public transportation or drop-off.

Attention Applicants:

The South African Embassy in Washington DC will no longer accept $16.00 fee but prepaid envelope from FedEx and USPS with tracking number with immediate effect to facilitate return services.