28 Dec 2014
Committed to Unity: South Africa’s Adherence to Its 1994 Political Settlement
IPS Paper No. 6
This paper reviews the commitment of the remaining power contenders and other political actors to the settlement which was reached between 1993 and 1996. Based on interviews with three key actors now in opposing political parties represented in the National Assembly, the paper makes the case for a continued commitment to, and consensus on, the ideals and principles of the 1996 Constitution. It provides evidence of schisms in the dominant power contender (the African National Congress) which have not led to a return in political violence post-settlement. The paper makes the point that, while some of this was the result of President Nelson Mandela’s presence, more must be ascribed to the constitutional arrangements and commitments of the primary political actors and the citizens of South Africa.
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