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Apartheid

 

Introduction

Apartheid was the political system of racial segregation that was practiced in South Africa from 1948 until 1994. It was not only an institutionalised form of racism but also a legalized system of white supremacy and white-minority rule that was completely entrenched within the country’s judicial, legislative and parliamentary processes. While being implemented by successive white National Party governments during this period, many of these laws were relaxed and/or repealed by the early 1990s, due to decades of national and international anti-apartheid resistance and the ongoing political negotiations during South Africa’s transition to a fully enfranchised democracy. However, the first democratic elections in 1994 is widely accepted as the formal demise of apartheid as a political system in South Africa, as it represents the first time a democratic electoral process was held in the country in which all of its citizens had the constitutional right to vote.