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Conflict and Negotiation Case Study

The Apartheid system of government in South Africa was an ill form of the worst treatment facing the black peoples by the white settlers. The system adjudicates separate development between the white people and the black citizens as a result of legal racial segregation that was administered by the National party government between 1948 and 1993. The black people of South Africa were denied their freedom to exercise their rights primarily due to racial discrimination, and as a result, the white gain economic and political dominance over the black people. The general election of 1948 that gave rise to the introduction of the apartheid system of government, classify inhabitant into racial groups as stated in the apartheid legislation and each racial group had their own residential areas separate from the others. The acquisition of social amenities; medical care, education, and other public services were equally segregated to that of whites. However, apartheid was faced by some series of internal resistance and violent in the quest of equal distribution of resources and fairness of justice to all races. The prolong series of protest against apartheid resulted in the banning of opposition and the imprisonment of the people that strive to oppose apartheid system. Consequently, the state retorted with increasing repression and state-sponsored violence to counter the opposition. However, the opposition continues and compels President Frederik Willem de Klerk to begin the negotiation to end apartheid.

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The apartheid government was faced by both local and international pressure, to end apartheid, and upon the realization that the system can no longer be kept functional due to the imminent opposition, the government resorts to negotiate with the opposing site to end apartheid. The international communities put South Africa on sanction which mounted pressure on the government to release Nelson Mandela on 11 February 1990 by the President F. W, de Klerk. The presidents also counsel the ban on anti-apartheid organizations and the African National Congress party (ANC). Mandela upon his release reiterated his commitment to peace and reconciliation with the white minority of the country and the struggle to regain the arms struggle established in1960 with the formation of the military wing of ANC that was a defensive tool to fight against repressive apartheid rule. His concern was to have the condition to negotiate with the government as an alternative to armed struggle. However, the leadership of the ANC returned to the hands of Mandela after his release and he spearheads the party in the multi-party negotiation encompassing all races resulting to the country's first ever multiracial election in1994 ( Louw, P. Eric (2004).

The main aim of the ANC had always to negotiate with their partners on the basis of democratic support to foster equitable rights to all the citizens of the country. The ANC and the Nation Party held a negotiation on issues of ending apartheid and the white minority rule. The agreement was that the political, economic, and social disparity against any group should not exist at all cost. The ANC also agree on the issue of "ethnic cleansing" against the white that no one will be executed as a result of the difference in ethnic line. Agreement on the post-conflict status of the white population was also negotiated and ANC party renewed their historic commitment with the prospect of making South Africa a multiracial state with equitable distribution of resources and the rule of justice applying to everyone regardless of race, ethnicity, gender or greed.

The ANC and the National Party also held talks to resolve conflict emanating in the population. As a result of their negotiation, both parties form a commission of Truth and Reconciliation commission with the help of the Dutch Reformed Church and the Anglican Church. The Anglican Archbishop, Desmond Tutu head this commission and the commission rule by the guidelines that a fine is imposed on the line between justice and order. Amnesty is allowed under this commission if someone charged with a political crime appeared before the commission and confess the crimes on a public forum.

The negotiation between the President F.W.de Klerk and ANC leader, Nelson Mandela took another shape in the year 1991 when Mandela referred to De Klerk as the head of "an illegitimate, discredited, minority regime". The talks were also put to a halt as a result of a massacre of Boipatong in June 1992 in which Mandela accuse De Klerk government complicity in the killing and lack of concern to administer justice. The main concern of the ANC struggle had been to achieving democracy while that of Mandela relates to peace and harmony and this was portrayed in the defeat of Inkatha.

In the late 1980s, the South African State had suffered much from economic instability and lose its business due to sections impose on the country by the International communities. The international communities had raised concern on the oppressive ruling government of apartheid. As the problems facing the apartheid government becomes imminent, PW Bother resolve to get rid of some of the segregation policies specifically those legislations that separate facilities such as beaches. Their impression to a certain their interest on the concern of the all ethnic races of South Africa did not fetch a good return from the international communities in the quest for help but rather the suction keeps on, on its state. The paralyzed economy and business shut down compel the National Party to call for a negotiation with the ANC. The business leaders, however, strife the agenda of settling political differences with the advantage on their side of ANC which had strong influence by communist ideology. Furthermore, the global political scene mounted pressure on the Botha's government and resulted in non-profit businesses and the collapse of the Soviet bloc tainting the image of Botha and recognizing the need to negotiate harmonize the privileges of resources in the country (BBC, 1980). In May 1990, the ANC and the government also held talks and agree on several issues including the release of political prisoners and immunity by the government to free political activist to exercise their rights. Subsequently, the ANC suspended the armed struggle to give room for a negotiation with the National Party on the way forward to end apartheid (Louw, P. Eric 2004).

South Africa conducted their first multiracial elections on 27 April 1994 under which the ANC party led by Nelson Mandela won the with 62% of the total votes cast in the election and later follows the inauguration of Nelson Mandela on 10 May 1994 as the first president of the Republic of South Africa. The National Party leader de Klerk became the first deputy president while Thabo Mbeki became the second deputy president through the Government of Nation Unity. With a series of negotiation, the apartheid system of government cease to exist and the standardized form of government has been put in place to fight for the rights of the people regardless of race and social standard. South Africa portrays one of the most ethnically diverse countries in Africa shaping the political activities base on racial and ethnic differences between the black minority and the white majority. The transition of politics gain direction and continue till the country attain independence under the leadership of President Nelson Mandela in the year 1994.