The contested state of democracy in South Africa

SOURCE: Political liberalisation and democratisation in Africa: lessons from country experiences
OUTPUT TYPE: Chapter in Monograph
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2003
TITLE AUTHOR(S): R.J.Southall
SOURCE EDITOR(S): J.Ihonvbere, J.Mbaku
KEYWORDS: DEMOCRACY, DEVELOPMENT, GOVERNMENT POLICY, POLITICS
DEPARTMENT: Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery (DGSD)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 1968

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Abstract

Whilst both the liberal and radical critiques point to both structural flaws and worrying developments in South African democracy, they overestimate the extent to which the ANC as the ruling party, is able to impose itself upon South African society. The authors proposes that democracy in South Africa is in a state of perpetual and dynamic contestation which revolves around three fundamental issues: the tension between democracy and dominance of the political arena by the ANC, the incipient clash between democracy and constitutional liberalism and the capacity of the state to counter apartheid social deficits.