Johannesburg / South Africa celebrates its sixth general elections on May 8th, 25 years after the start of democracy in a country that still suffers from the wounds of the racist regime of “apartheid”. These are the basic data of the country, Africa’s most industrialized economy:
LOCATION: The Republic of South Africa occupies the southern cone of the African continent from the Limpopo River (north) to the Cape Needles (south). It borders to the north with Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe and to the east with Mozambique and Esuatini (formerly Swaziland), as well as with the Atlantic and Indian oceans.
AREA: 1.221.038 square kilometres.
POPULATION: 58.3 million inhabitants (IMF, 2019).
LANGUAGE: Eleven official languages: Afrikaans, English, Expedite, Isixhosa, Isizulu, Sesotho, Setswana, Siswati, Sisndebele, Tshivenda, and Xitsonga.
RELIGION: Christian majority, traditional African religions are also professed, and there is a Hindu and Muslim minority.
POLITICAL SYSTEM: Federal state formed by a central government and nine provincial. On 22 December 1993, Parliament approved a transitional constitution that delands the system of racial segregation and establishes a parliamentary democracy. The current constitution dates back to 1996 and was approved under the presidency of Nelson Mandela.
The executive power is exercised by the President (elected by the National Assembly), the Vice-President and a cabinet of ministers. The Parliament is composed of 400 deputies and the Senate by 90 members.
GOVERNMENT: The head of state is Cyril Ramaphosa since February 2018.
MAIN POLITICAL PARTIES: African National Congress (ANC), Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).
Total GNP: 385.526 million dollars (IMF, 2019).
GNP per cápita: 6.609 dollars (2019).
Inflation: 5,2 % (IMF, 2019).
Unemployment: 28,6 % (2019).
South Africa reaches independence in 1961 and the National Party Afrikaner (PN), in power since 1948, exerts a policy of racial segregation under the regime of Pieter Botha until the arrival with the presidency of Frederik de Klerk in 1989.
This policy of discrimination leads the UN in 1961 to prohibit the sale of arms to South Africa, and in 1971 to condemn it explicitly. The European Community adds in 1986 to this isolation with economic sanctions extending to April 1991.
On August 15, 1989, De Klerk replaces Pieter Botha in the presidency and initiates the dismantling of “apartheid”. In 1990, he legalises opposition organizations, including the African National Congress (ANC), and orders the release of its most emblematic leader, Nelson Mandela, who gets out of jail after 27 years.
On February 12, 1991, the government and the ANC sign an agreement thanks to which the first commits to free the political prisoners and allow the return of exiles, in exchange for the second to renounce the armed struggle.
In June 1991, Parliament votes for the end of racial segregation and Klrek announces the opening of talks For the transition to a complete democracy in a multiparty forum (CODESA), which breaks with the economic boycott of the international community.
However, the end of racial segregation does not end with tribal struggles in Zulu-influenced areas and in the suburbs of large cities, So Mandela and the head of the Zulu Inkhata movement, Mangosutu Butelesi, meet on January 29, 1991 in Durban to address violence in the villages and black neighborhoods.
Finally, it’s De Klerk who reaches, in February 1993, an agreement with Mandela for the holding of elections in 1994 and the formation of a national unity government for five years; achievement for which they were both awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
After intense negotiations, from 26 to 29 April 1994, the first multi-racial elections took place -after three centuries of white domination-, with Mandela’s victory.
In 1996, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission began its work, investigating the human rights violations committed between 1960 and 1993, and the expresident Pieter Botha is indicted.
Years later and given Mandela’s decision to withdraw from political life, the ANC’s leader and until then Vice-President, Thabo Mbeki, wins in the second democratic elections, in June 1999.
Five years later, Mbeki was re-elected with a support for the party that amounted to around 70% of the vote. In the midst of hard internal struggles, Zuma was chosen to take over the ANC presidency in December 2007, in front of Mbeki.
In the May 2014 elections he renews his position as president, and later, involved in multiple cases of corruption, Zuma comes to overcome during his term of office up to eight motions of censure.
However, on February 15, 2018 it is forced to resign pressured by its party and is replaced by the Vice-President Cyril Ramaphosa. On February 7, 2019, Ramaphosa announces general elections for May 8th. (May 6, 2019, EFE/Practica Español)
Lee la noticia y responde las preguntas. (Read the news and answer these questions)
Los datos básicos sobre Sudáfrica.
La pobreza en Sudáfrica.
Las religiones en Sudáfrica.
Por su carácter autoritario.
Por involucrarse en varios casos de corrupción.
Por sus reformas drásticas.
Unión de un grupo de personas con intereses comunes.
Discriminación a una persona o a un grupo de personas por motivos sociales, políticos o culturales.
Reunión de un grupo religioso.
Descomponer una actividad, un negocio o una organización.
Derribar un muro.
Guardar un mantel.
Una designación de un nuevo cargo político.
Una reforma de la Constitución.
Una propuesta que el conjunto de los representantes de la oposición presenta contra el equipo de gobierno.