Neither should it ever happen that once more the avenues to peaceful change are blocked by usurpers who seek to take power away from the people, in pursuit of their own, ignoble purposes.
Why is it that in this courtroom I face a white magistrate, am confronted by a white prosecutor, and escorted into the dock by a white orderly? Because of their courage and persistence for many years, we can, today, even set the dates when all humanity will join together to celebrate one of the outstanding human victories of our century.
It will not be presumptuous of us if we also add, among our predecessors, the name of another outstanding Nobel Peace Prize winner, the late Rev Martin Luther King Jr. It is the protection of a fundamental human right, the right to dignity and a decent life. The vicious circle has not been decisively broken.
If indeed this is a Cape of Good Hope, that hope owes much to the spirit of that legion of fighters and others of their calibre. Mandela had early taken a stand as an active opponent of apartheid.
Slackening off means opening for new conflicts. We do not believe that this Nobel Peace Prize is intended as a commendation for matters that have happened and passed.
On 26 September Mandela and de Klerk signed a Record of Understanding confirming their agreement that a single, freely elected constituent assembly would draft a new constitution.
It was attended by some 70 writers, scientists and academics from 29 countries, including Nobel peace laureates Elie Wiesel He himself has said that perhaps he would have harboured bitter thoughts if he had not had a job to do. Mandela and Frederik Willem de Klerk represent provides hope not only for South Africa; it is also a shining example for the world that there are ways out of the vicious circle of violence and bitterness.
There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.