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South African Unrest Shows People Losing Faith in ANC

The violent unrest continues in South Africa, where several more mines were shut down Wednesday after more than a thousand protesters demanded higher wages from mining companies.

The protests were started by the new Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU), which was formed due to dissatisfaction with the ANC-aligned National Union of Mineworkers (NUM). The NUM was accused of taking advantage of its close ties with the ANC government to skim money off the top while leaving workers to deal with terrible conditions in the mines. The unrest has:

. . . poisoned industrial relations across the mining sector and highlighted the ruling African National Congress’s (ANC) failure to keep its promises to reduce poverty in the post-apartheid era.

The bloodshed and the government’s inability to resolve the unrest undermining already shaky growth in Africa’s biggest economy [are] also fuelling a campaign against President Jacob Zuma, who faces an internal ANC leadership battle in December.

South Africa’s corruption-infested politics are failing to live up to the high hopes of the beginning of the ANC era, and South Africans are beginning to get fed up. Until South African leaders get serious about building their state and taking on corruption, we can expect to see more unrest like what we’ve seen over the past few months.

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