oa South African Human Rights Yearbook - Elections

Volume 8, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1354-3903



The first democratic national elections in South Africa conducted during 1994 revolved mainly around ideals: disencumbering a nation from the hegemony of the apartheid system, tolerance, nation-building, inculcation of a human rights culture and the democratisation of all spheres of governance.1 For the fledgling democracy to evolve and reach maturity, elections should transcend beyond such ideals or lofty notions, becoming a 'normal' event, entrenched as a means of expressing political choices. In this chapter the main focus will be on preparations for this country's first 'normal' general elections in 1999, the main issues affecting perceptions and fundamental rights of the electorate and the positioning of the main political players.

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