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South Africa To Celebrate 30th Freedom Anniversary Amid Election Tensions

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  vic-eldred  •  4 weeks ago  •  1 comments

By:   ARISEtv (Arise News)

South Africa To Celebrate 30th Freedom Anniversary Amid Election Tensions
As South Africa prepares to celebrate 30 years of freedom, the country still faces formidable challenges.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



As South Africa gears up to celebrate 30 years of freedom and democracy on Saturday, reflections trail the country's journey from its first democratic elections till date.

South Africa's first democratic elections were held 30 years ago, on April 27, 1994, after decades of white minority rule which denied Black people the right to vote. It marked a pivotal shift from a harsh history to the hope of a thriving future.

Nonki Kunene, a 72-year-old, reminisced about the joy she and many others felt 30 years ago when they voted for the first time, joining millions of South Africans on long queues to take part in the country's first democratic elections.

She said, "I somehow wish we could go back to that day, because of how excited I was and the things that happened thereafter".

However, three decades later, a significant portion of that hope has evaporated in the face of formidable challenges confronting the nation. The nation's Black population faces widespread poverty, with an unemployment rate surpassing 32%, the highest in the world and more than 16 million South Africans relying on monthly welfare grants for survival.

The country also experiences a severe electricity crisis, causing power outages, forcing businesses and households to endure up to 12-hour blackouts.

Although the affluent suburb of Sandton in Johannesburg showcases economic prosperity for a minority, with skyscrapers and luxurious homes, the township of Alexandra is a sharp contrast, depicting the dire living conditions of the poor Black majority, with sewage on the streets and unattended rubbish piles. These disparities are widespread in major cities like Pretoria and Cape Town.

The current situation in the country has caused many to feel failed by the country's leaders. Regardless, the citizens are preparing for the country's elections in May.

Since the ANC took office in 1994, polls suggest the party could garner less than 50% of the national vote.

24-year-old Donald Mkhwanazi, who will be voting for the first time in the upcoming elections said "I had an opportunity to vote in 2019, and in local elections in 2021, but I did not because I was not persuaded enough by any of these old parties about why I should vote. I didn't see the need to vote because of what has been happening over the past 30 years. We talk about freedom, but are we free from crime, are we free from poverty? What freedom is this that we are talking about?"

Political analyst Pearl Mncube underscored the need for accountability and action in addressing present-day issues, adding that "more and more South Africans have grown sceptical of pronouncements from the government due to its history of continuously announcing grand plans without prioritizing the swift execution of said plans".


Melissa Enoch


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Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  seeder  Vic Eldred    4 weeks ago

Thirty years ago, not only marked the end of what is called "minority rule" in South Africa, but the final act in the colonization of the African continent. Now is a time to look back with a little perspective. Having the right to vote is one of a citizen's most cherished rights. Using it well helps to determine the fate of a nation.

The question for South Africans is did they use their vote well?

 
 

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