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South Africa

This tag is associated with 51 posts

Stiff-Collar Guys Confirm Democracy is Working in South Africa

SA Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan Back in March, I was riding in an Uber car to my Johannesburg hotel. While most of the Uber drivers I’ve met in South Africa have hailed from Congo, Malawi, and Zim, this guy was born in Soweto. We were listening to talk radio, and the show was discussing the … Continue reading

How Nelson Mandela pulled his punches and helped transform South Africa

At the Monkey Cage: How Nelson Mandela pulled his punches and helped transform South Africa.

A bittersweet farewell to the Institute for Democracy in South Africa (Idasa)

The Institute for a Democratic Alternative for South Africa played a pivotal role in that country’s transition away from apartheid rule. Two “white liberals” – Alex Borraine and the late Frederick van Zyl Slabbert – left their jobs as members of parliament in order to meet with exiled members of the African National Congress in … Continue reading

The LRC challenges the shame of South Africa’s schools

There is much to admire about South Africa’s relative progress and stability in the almost nineteen years since its first multiracial election, but its school system is truly an embarrassment. Despite the country’s upper-middle-income classification, many areas that were formerly designated as so-called “homelands” (i.e., the Transkei and Ciskei), resemble the poorest areas of many … Continue reading

Contemplating a different kind of billionaire in higher office in Africa

Too many African states have been governed by the wrong kind of millionaires and even billionaires – those who have “earned” their money while being in office, extracting resources from the state in various ways. Indeed, one of the challenges for African political development has been that state office has too often been seen as … Continue reading

South Africa: race and the census

While I was in Cape Town last week, the South African statistics bureau released preliminary results from the 2011 census. Interesting stuff for someone who is particularly interested in the census and race politics. For South Africa, the obvious and immediate questions that come up are, how are life styles evolving? And how does this … Continue reading

Commemorating a famous South African protest with new protests

South African president Jacob Zuma spoke yesterday in Kliptown, Soweto in commemoration of the 1960 Sharpeville massacres — an infamous event, during which peaceful protests against the South African pass law turned into a police killing of 69 people. In an attempt to put an affirming spin on this horrible but political watershed event, the … Continue reading

Legal Resource Centre challenges S. African Secrecy Bill

George Bizos defended Nelson Mandela and other ANC luminaries during the Rivonia trials of the early 1960s. Now, he is putting forth a challenge to the so-called “secrecy bill,” authored by the current ANC government. Bizos, who works in the constitutional litigation unit of the Legal Resources Centre (LRC), argues that the bill contradicts the … Continue reading

Growth in South African AIDS spending – crowding out other health investments?

I recently posted about the possible North-South conflict over AIDS spending that might emerge when donors discover that South African taxpayers (i.e. relatively wealthy South Africans) are getting a reprieve while the global fund releases scarce millions of dollars for AIDS treatment in that country — rather than to a country with less domestic fiscal … Continue reading

The Global Fund and South African taxation

The UN news service just reported that the Global Fund FINALLY released funds for South African AIDS treatment, and several leading actors are quoted expressing profound relief, citing a long delay from promise to payment. Of course, the context is a country with the world’s largest number of people infected with HIV and in need … Continue reading

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