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South Africa : Will ANC survive to 2019 ?

After twenty-three years of power, in spite of beautiful democrat intentions, the record of the ANC governments in South Africa is mixed: the population is poorer than in the days of apartheid, the state is failing, Corrupted are politicians. Crime has exploded and racial hatred poisons everyday life. South Africa has become an ordinary African country.

The history of South Africa is that of rivalry between three groups: Africans, British origin citizens and Franco-Dutch: the Boers. African population was first enslaved by the army of Her Majesty. Despite the courageous resistance, and a defeat inflicted to the British army by Zulu warriors at the Battle of Isandhlwana (January 22, 1879), African populations were subjected to white power until the end of the twentieth century. Then, the British opposed settlers of Franco-Dutch origin: the Boers.
In 1835, the Boers left the Cape Colony to migrate to the interior of South Africa and escape British domination. It was the "Grand Trek", which gave rise to two independent Boer republics: South African Republic of the Transvaal (1852) and the Free State of Orange (1854). The Boers discovered mines of diamonds and gold. Then, the British launched the "Second Boer War", in 1902, to seize these mines. They resolved to subject the Boers to the British Empire. Thousands of Boers were exterminated in camps.
Eight years later, in 1910, the Boers regained power by proclaiming the independence of the country. General Boer, Louis Botha, was the first head of the South African government. Almost immediately, in 1912, the African National Congress (ANC), a Bantu party, was founded in Bloemfontein, to recall the political and economic rights of blacks. The following year, 1913, the Native Land Act divided the territory between the black reserves (13% of the territory) and the lands of the white settlers.
It was in the 30s that the intellectual foundations of apartheid were developed. The scholar Werner Max Eiselen and other researchers at the Afrikaner University in Stellenbosch argued that it was better to separate geographically, politically and economically the different ethnic groups in the country, both to combat the acculturation of Africans who were beginning to gather in the ghettos of the great white South African cities and to preserve the security and the way of life of the Whites. The idea was probably also to divide the different African ethnic groups in order to better reign over them. In 1948, the national party winning the elections, the new prime minister, Daniel François Malan, immediately applied apartheid.
In 1960, the massacre of 69, apparently peaceful but numerous, black demonstrators in the township of Sharpeville was a pretext for the international community to interfere in the affairs of the country. The South African government banned ANC and African nationalist movements. The Umkhonto we Sizwe, armed wing of the ANC in collaboration with the Communist Party, launched various attacks on the territory, with the support of Soviet instructors and bases of withdrawal and training in Angola. In 1963, Nelson Mandela, one of the Umkhonto chiefs, was sentenced to life imprisonment for terrorism. The United States and the Soviets sought to exploit racial tension to oust the Boer political power and take control of the country. The South Africans of English origin rather militated with the ANC against the Boers. The United Nations condemned South Africa.
In 1976, the riots in the township of Soweto, against compulsory education in Afrikaans, the official language, led the government to declare a state of emergency. In 1986, international economic and political sanctions isolated the Boer government. Israel, also criticized by the international community for its Palestinian policy, maintained a discreet military cooperation with Pretoria government.
In 1990, the newly elected South African President, Frederik de Klerk, legalized the ANC, the South African Communist Party and all the black movements. Nelson Mandela was released to become president four years later. South Africa re-entered the Commonwealth, whites of English origin hoped to exercise economic power with Mandela. The international media applauded, the future of South Africa was promised radiant by the UN.
This was not the case. No political or economic promises have been kept, but international community no longer seems interested in South Africa.

South Africa is the country with the largest number of Blacks, Indians and Whites from Africa. Yet the "rainbow nation", as Archbishop Desmond Tutu calls it, is losing a color: white. On April 27, 1994, ANC won the first multiracial elections in the country. Charismatic Nelson Mandela became the country's first black president, nine African languages ​​(Zulu, Xhosa, Zwazi, Ndebele, Sesotho, Sepedi, Setswana, Tshivenda) were added to the two official languages, Afrikaans and English. In fact, the coming to power of the ANC sounded like the great political and economic revenge of black people in South Africa. International community shyly turned a blind eye to anti-white racism, corruption and murders organized by black politicians such as Winnie Mandela, Nelson's ex-wife ("A Boer, a bullet ..."), . Since 1994, South African authorities have put in place a policy of segregation (affirmative aksie) which, under the false speech of giving more space to the black majority of the population in public administrations, public services or in the private sector, excludes whites. Major mining groups and banks were forced to sell 26% of their capital to blacks, who were often the leaders, or close to the leaders, of the ruling ANC. Former lawyer Patrice Motsepe, from a royal family Tswana, a member of the ANC, trained in the United States, thus became the second richest black in the world with $ 3.3 billion, according to Forbes magazine, in 2011. These new laws also imposed a minimum of 40% of black executives in companies. Corporations that most readily surrendered their capital, or placed the most token blacks in supervisory positions, systematically wan public contracts. In fact, the posts in the South African administration are now reserved for blacks. While this policy has favored the growth of a tiny minority of black diamonds, a black bourgeoisie with a diploma and an urban background, whites have too often been retired or transferred from the administrations and their children have no hope to be hired. These skilled whites have therefore migrated massively to Australia and New Zealand. South Africa now lacks skills in financial management, information technology, judicial and security management. The government would like to bring these whites back to the country and struggles to offer them attractive conditions. But there remains a major obstacle to their return: the explosion of racial violence. 3 037 white farmers were massacred between the end of apartheid and February 2009. This year, in 2017, there were more than 70 attacks on white farmers and 25 murders, according to the agricultural union Transvaal Agricultural Union, and the association of civic rights defense AfriForum . South African government statistics on this subject remain non-existent. The sudden wave of burglaries in the early 1990s led white South Africans to barricade themselves at home. The wealthiest installed 9,000 volts electrified grids and infrared barriers. The perpetrators then used the gun on the head as a key to enter houses. The well-to-do inhabitants are now entrenched in guarded communities, guarded twenty-four hours a day. The rate of sexual violence in South Africa is one of the highest in the world, one in four South Africans commits rape, one child is raped every three minutes, 40% of South Africans women will be raped in their lives. Black police officers are poorly motivated and poorly paid. The police stations are supervised by private companies.

There is a community of which there is little talk in the "rainbow nation": the Indians and their important role in African economy. The Sunday Times, published a series of emails, intercepted between the Gupta family and the entourage of the president. It emerged that the Gupta family controlled the government. The Gupta family, of Indian origin, is a wealthy family in South Africa. They have multiple IT companies, newspapers and media companies, an airline and several mines. The Sunday Times discovered that they were controlling South African political world and the close entourage of current South African President Jacob Zuma in particular. They hired the wife, a son and a daughter of the president for leadership positions in their trading empire. They claimed, of course, like the president, that they have never benefited from it ... The Gupta have been in the political career of Mr. Zuma since 2003. They were the ones who had him elected to ANC presidency, which opened the doors of the presidency of the country. The former secretary general of the South African Trade Union Congress, Zwelinzima Vavi, speaks of them as a "shadow government".The party of the Freedom Economic Fighters affirms that the Gupta colonized, de facto, South Africa. Zuma denies.
The Gupta do what they want: to land their private planes on the runways of South African military bases, with the agreement of the chief of protocol of the president (affair of the "Guptagate", Waterkloof in June 2013) giving Minister of Transport to a member of the ANC in exchange for a measure favoring their airline (Vytjie Mentor 2010), to offer a post of finance minister (Mcebisi Jonas case in December 2015, Mosebenzi Zwane case, David van Rooyen case December 2015) in exchange for an intervention in a mining transaction, to visit president house on a daily basis. Scandals are accumulating, Zuma denies.
By the end of May 2017, a number of e-mails had been disclosed to the public by the Sunday Times. These e-mails showed, unambiguously, that the Gupta had appointed ministers and leaders of the public enterprises who suited them. Gupta-owned enterprises are favored by the government and, in exchange, Gupta-owned media are always in favor of President Zuma. The evidence accumulates, the manifestations of anger multiply. The end of apartheid meant a lot of hopes for the South African street; To see the leaders of the ANC corrupt this democratic hope with the new financial masters of the country is intolerable to them.
ANC historical leaders Ahmed Kathrada and Derek Hanekom called on the ANC to seriously investigate Zuma's relations with the Gupta family. At the death of Kathrada in March 2017, President Zuma was not invited to the funeral at the request of the Kathrada family. Former President Kgalema Motlanthe read an open letter that Kathrada had published a year before his death: he called Zuma to resign immediately. The explosive evidence is there. President Jacob Zuma can deny everything, accuse the "white monopoly", an old reflex of an ANC militant, it no longer works. ANC militants demand the end of the Zuma clan's hold on their movement. If they do not succeed, the ANC will not survive the presidential mandate.

Since the days of apartheid, the whole country has been falling. For years, the continent's main economic power, South Africa, after 2014, fell behind Nigeria (rich, it is true, with important oil production). Its transport network, its infrastructures, its multinational companies, its nuclear power plant (the only one on the African continent) in Koeberg, are legacies of the past, when the whites were moving the country towards the economic standards of a Western country. It is true that democratically the apartheid regime left much to be desired. But today the situation is not brilliant, on this plan either. The protests are multiplying. In 2017, the population protested against the general deterioration of administrative services and the corruption of politicians, starting with President Zuma.
The country remains rich. It has the world's largest gold, platinum and precious metal fields. However, observers note the general impoverishment of the population. The number of people living below the extreme poverty line has doubled in ten years. Unemployment, officially at 23.2%, affects nearly 40% of the population. The income of the poorest is half that of the apartheid regime era.
South Africa of the 21st century knows all the contemporary problems of its African neighbors. In 2008, electricity cuts paralyzed the country and caused the temporary closure of major gold, platinum and diamond mines. 450,000 people lost their jobs temporarily or permanently. The ANC governments, composed of political activists but poor in competent professionals, did not succeed to manage the country. He has not been able to modernize, simply maintain properly, or have new power plants built since he was there. Limits are now imposed on households and businesses consumption. Road conditions have deteriorated, as have hospitals and public schools. South Africa is experiencing the usual problems of corruption on the continent.
ANC withdrew President Thabo Mbeki mandate on September 21, 2008. Kgalema Motlanthe followed briefly until the 2009 presidential elections, where on 22 April Jacob Zuma became the new President of the Republic. The latter had to expand its government beyond the monopoly of the ANC, allying himself with the Communist Party and the Front of Freedom, the Afrikaner right. On Thursday 16 August 2012, 34 minors were killed and seventy-eight wounded in clashes between strikers and policemen at the Marikana Platinum Mine, north of Johannesburg. The miners lived in slums adjacent to the mine, without running water. They received wages that would not allow them to live decently. Despite this scandal, Jacob Zuma was re-elected in 2014, due to the all-round loyalty of voters to the ANC. (The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which had probably helped to spare a bloodbath in South Africa by exorcising the racist crimes of apartheid, helped to glorify the ANC and its leaders). The incompetence of the successive ANC governments, and the shameless corruption of the Zuma government in particular, exasperates African populations, especially the poorest. Agrarian reform was to impose land redistribution to Blacks. In 1994, 87% of South Africa's arable land belonged to white farmers. The populist promises of the agrarian reform were to redistribute 30% of these lands to the black populations, as early as 2014. But South African state can not afford to pay the land to white settlers at the price of market. The government of Pretoria has gesticulated, threatened to expropriate white farmers to get support from townships voters. But the country must absolutely avoid a collapse of its agricultural production. A severe food shortage had affected neighboring Zimbabwe, in the early 2000s, when the Zimbabwean dictator, Robert Gabriel Mugabe, intoxicated with his revenge speech against Whites, let white farmers be slaughtered and  their properties plundered by black citizens. New land buyers in South Africa are having difficulty maintaining agricultural yields due to lack of skills, financial means and education. 24% of the restituted lands end up in wasteland.
Blacks hoped that ANC's accession to power would allow them to get a taste of the whites way of life. They are frustrated and return their resentment, not only against the whites, against the well-off blacks and politicians who have failed, but also against those who are even more disadvantaged : African illegal immigrants from neighboring countries. Many Africans from neighboring countries enter illegally in South Africa, thinking they will earn more money than in their home countries. But it is AIDS (7 million South Africans have HIV, 180 000 died in 2015) Townships crimes which welcome them. In May 2008, and more recently, in March 2015, Johannesburg and other cities in the country experienced violent anti-immigrant riots, killing about 50 people. 25,000 people became homeless and thousands of illegal immigrants had to flee.
The "rainbow nation" is struggling to keep its cohesion. The accusation against whites and Indians who control the national economy remains the last argument, reiterated by black politicians to preserve the electoral favors of townships inhabitants. Julius Malema, former leader of the ANC, disavowed and subsequently dismissed by the movement, continues to call for expropriation without compensation and threats violence against whites and Gupta clan who monopolize economy. His party, the Economic Freedom Fighters, became the third political force in the country, surfing on the exasperation of the ghettos.
The power of the ANC is crumbling. South African President Jacob Zuma was unable to deliver his speech in May 2017 at a gathering of the South African Trade Union Congress (Cosatu) in Bloemfontein. He was booed, many demanding his resignation. He had to leave the premises. Popular discontent is increasing. Cosatu trade union, traditionally a strong ally of the ANC, with the South African Communist Party, is getting frustratred by ANC government. The 783 accusations of corruption, fraud and racketeering against the president Zuma, including his ties with the Gupta family who controlled the country, his government's outrageous cabinet reshuffle, inevitably push the president towards exit. Cosatu's secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi, invited Zuma to Resign. The president should leave, at the latest, after the electoral conference of December 2017, when the ANC chooses its new leader, likely to become the next South African president in 2019.
Zuma would like his former wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, several times minister, and former president of the Commission of the African Union, to be next after him to guarantee his future political immunity. Mrs Dlamini-Zuma former husband has largely bought the vote of the delegates of the ANC Congress, according to the main competitor in the running, Cyril Ramaphosa. However, the ANC has lost its aura since 1994, and particularly since the last presidential term of Mr. Zuma. An elected president, who does not belong to the ANC, is, for the first time since 1994, to be considered.


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