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Contributor: James Ogunleye
South Africa: Three years of ANC Goverment.

It has been a very eventful three years for South Africa. After a honeymoon period in which Mandela was feted all over the world, his government settled down to the nitty-gritty of running a country of very diverse peoples and many unhealed wounds. It is a task which some of the ANC stalwarts will agree is a much tougher job than running a guerilla war.
In this time, the long running problem of Kwazulu /Natal repeatedly surfaced - especially in times of elections in the region. The problem has so far been softened by Mandela's policy of reconciliation by which he appointed Inkatha Chief, Buthelezi to the powerful post of Home Affairs minister.
Last year, the government faced its first strike from COSATU (Congress of South African Trade Unions) in protest at the proposed constitutional reform which was to give employers the right to sack strikers. It was a totally new experience, COSATU having being one of the ANC's staunchest allies in the apartheid era.
And there of course is the perennial problem of crime. So bad is the problem that a number of vigilante organisations have taken up arms to defend their communities. Last year, the world witnessed member of the muslim vigilante organisation PAGAD (People against Drugs and Crime) set fire to a suspected gangster, even as the ambulance men attended to him. He had earlier been shot by a PAGAD member.
Earlier this year, the country was embroiled in its first big international rift, when it clashed with the USA over its (South Africa's) policy of selling arms to Syria. President mandela declared, in response to US chastisement, that "no country, no mater how powerful, would dictate South Africa's foreign policy".

And then of course the worms began to creep out of the cans. Firstly, South African secret intelligence was linked to the murder of Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme. Mr Palme had actively opposed apartheid before his death. And now there are accusations and counter accusations that certain senior ANC members had been spies for the minority South African government.
Probably the most successful of the government's projects to date is the Truth and Reconciliation Commission headed by the much respected Archbishop Desmond Tutu. the commission had faced controversy at its conception. The victims of apartheid-time crimes wanted the right to try the offenders in court while many apartheid-era officers refused to recognise the authority of body. Some of the offices in which the Commission sat were bombed but the Commission was undeterred.
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