Henning Melber

Thanks a lot for the powerful, spot on comment on the ongoing scandal of sacrificing the victims in Darfur to politicking in the absence of any meaningful action (Pambazuka News 171: Comment and Analysis). It is a shame for all of us who seem to be unable once again to do more than to watch in despair and disbelief. It confronts those who care once again with the painful but necessary task of redefining the meaning of international solidarity and how to act accordingly. All the solemn decl...read more

Participants in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Seminar on “Promoting an Independent and Pluralistic African Press”, held in Windhoek, Namibia, from 29 April to 3 May 1991, declared: “Consistent with article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the establishment, maintenance and fostering of an independent, pluralistic and free press is essential to the development and maintenance of democracy in a nation and for economic development.”...read more

On 14th April, almost exactly ten years since the democratic transition, the citizens of South Africa will have for the third time a largely free and fair opportunity to cast their votes for another national parliament. The outcome is predictable: the ruling African National Congress (ANC) will remain in government with an absolute majority of votes. More of interest will be if the former liberation movement achieves a two-thirds majority, and if it also takes over the two provinces of KwaZ...read more

With its successful democratic transition, South Africa emerged during the second half of the 1990s as a new political and economic factor on the continent. Within this process, Thabo Mbeki's foreign policy approach could be characterised as 'a complicated and sometimes contradictory mixture of ideology, idealism and pragmatism' (Gerrit Olivier in International Affairs, no. 4/2003). South Africa's Finance Minister Trevor Manuel, in a keynote address to the German Foundation for International ...read more

Liberation movements in Southern Africa emerged from the anti-colonial struggle as political parties in government. Since taking power they have consolidated their position in both the political arena, as well as within most, if not all, state and parastatal structures. In securing a power of definition in the political arena they are shaping – to the extent of manipulating - public discourse to suit their ends. Why have the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU), to a lesser but clearly v...read more