Conflict transformation in post-apartheid South Africa from 1994-2013.
Rwebangira, Redempta Kokusiima.
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With South Africa’s momentous transition to democratic rule in 1994, the Nelson Mandela administration significantly underscored the need to erect the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) as a mechanism to address the grievances, racial discrimination and violence that characterized the apartheid era. The South African government and the TRC have initiated policies to expedite reconciliation among its different races with the primary objective to recompense those who were previously marginalized and abused by the apartheid regime. Such attempts include: economic and land restitution and affirmative action. Despite these strides however, there are still enormous challenges, especially with regards to socio-economic imbalances, racial skirmishes, violence, and unresolved grievances among the victims of the apartheid era. Conceived in this way, the primary purpose of this research is to offer a broad analysis of rationale to transform some of the apartheid structural arrangements to a more egalitarian structure. 1994 heralded a new era of democratization in South Africa after long years of apartheid regime. The transition from autocratic rule to democracy has often been an excruciating one. It is no doubt that the challenges of transformation and reconciliation have resulted in the changing of the character of conflict and violence in post-apartheid South African society. This study also intends to analyse the current nature of conflict in post-apartheid South Africa such as; black on black, political assassinations and taxi violence. Although the nature of violent conflict in South Africa has transformed since post-apartheid, ostensibly, these conflicts are nevertheless rooted in apartheid. Given the foregoing, it appears that the full recovery from the apartheid era is still a far cry. In order for this recovery to take place, some of the structures of the apartheid era must be removed and multi-racial groups fully integrated.