TRU workshop: 3-5 April, 2017
3-4 April 2017
Venue: Mont Fleur Conference Centre
3 April 2017
Topic: The proposed TRU Data and Training Centre
08:45 Arrival: tea/coffee
Ursula van Beek
09:05 Opening Presentation
Title: Research data infrastructure building blocks for democracy research in the Transformation Research Unit and in the global context
09:55 Discussion and questions
10:30 Tea Break
11:00 - 13:00
Chair: Hans-Dieter Klingemann
- Creating a hub for TRU research projects and capacity building
- Cindy: African continental academic network and data sources
14:00 - 15:00 General summarising discussion and closing
Dinner at venue for all participants
4 April 2017
Topic: TRU: Southern Africa
09:00 Nicola de Jager
Introduction to project: The future of democracy and good governance in southern Africa
09:10 - 10:30 Presentations of concept drafts
Nicola de Jager (South Africa)
Democracy and governance in southern Africa: Evaluating the potential of Christianity to reverse the current trends
David Sebudubudu (Botswana)
The waning of democracy in Africa's 'Shining Star': Botswana
Catherine Musuva (Zambia)
Political participation and civil society in Zambia
Webster Zambara (Zimbabwe)
Navigating the potholes: How liberation movements are putting democracy under stress in South Africa and Zimbabwe.
Henning Melber (Namibia)
Namibia's one-party democracy: Good governance at risk?
Krige Siebrits (South Africa)
When dominant parties stagnate or regress: Towards an analytical framework
10:30 Tea Break
11:00 - 12:30
- Discussion on ways in which to integrate TRU: Southern Africa research into the global TRU research agenda
12:30 - 13:00
Presentation: Prof E Calitz and Dr. Siebrits
Round table discussion: Interlinking the economists' project with TRU research
14:00 - 16:00
Presentations by TRU students
Annemie Parkin Parties of pressure: Opposition parties in the dominant party-systems of Botswana, Namibia and South Africa
Helen Kroes Quality of governance in South Africa's state owned enterprise: The case of Eskom
Heike Morkel Identity politics in the Rainbow Nation and its effect on post-apartheid democracy
Fairchance Ncube From Chimurenga to #ThisFlag: Generational Value Change, Democracy and Youth Social Media Activism in Zimbabwe
- Discussion on papers
Dinner in Stellenbosch: TRU members
5 April 2017
Venue: STIAS: Manor House library
Presentations of drafts for book Democracy under Threat: The crisis of legitimacy?
08:45 Arrival: Tea and coffee
09:00 Impacts on Political Legitimacy
Dieter Fuchs and Hans-Dieter Klingemann
09:20 Coping with the Impacts of Globalization: A Study of Support for Democracy in Five Young and Two Old Democracies
Ursula Hoffmann-Lange and Dirk Berg-Schlosser
09:40 Discussion on drafts
10:30 Tea Break
Escape routes from democracy
11:00 Identity Politics: The Loss of Capacity to Compromise in Turkey
11:20 Political Radicalism: Responding to the legitimacy gap in South Africa
Nicola De Jager and Cindy Steenekamp
11:40 The Return of a Nationalist ethos: The Loss of Liberal Democracy in Poland
Ursula van Beek
12:00 Discussion on drafts
Quo Vadis democracy?
14:00 Kaleidoscopic Democratizations in Latin America
14:20 Democratic Resilience in East Asia
14:40 Globalization and political legitimacy in Western Europe
15:00 Democracy's "diplomatic deficit"
15:20 Tea Break
15:40 Legitimacy at Stake
Pierre du Toit
16:00 General discussion
Dinner in Stellenbosch: TRU members
TRU Seminar: 21 November, 2017
Co-host: Prof. Henning Melber, Van Zyl Slabbert Visiting Professor at the University of Cape Town
Topic: Dialogue towards a democratic South Africa
Presenters: Helmut Orbon and Christopher Makuvaza
Helmut Orbon was member of the local facilitation team providing a forum for exchanges between South Africans of different backgrounds.
Title: Frederik Van Zyl Slabbert, the Dialogue Programmed on Cold Comfort and the Pitfalls of Ideology
Summary of paper: The Dialogue Programmed between black and white South Africans in the late 80s and early 90s conducted in Zimbabwe and elsewhere, made a significant contribution to the largely peaceful transition from apartheid to democracy in South Africa. The dialogue was first conducted at the Cold Comfort Farm established in Rhodesia in the 1960s on St. Faith Mission in Rusape, some 150 km east of Harare, by the British missionary and agriculturalist Guy Clutton-Brock. The Cold Comfort Farm soon became a centre for non-acial partnership policies and a kind of Mecca for black nationalists in Rhodesia. Many leading members of the liberation movement were part of the Cold Comfort Farm.
Two key figures: Frederik Van Zyl Slabbert and Alex Boraine, and the Institute for a Democratic Alternative in South Africa (IDASA) more broadly, were the architects of the dialogue. They had managed to initiate the right thing at the right time because they saw a window of opportunity and were able to act without ideological constraints or the baggage of political parties and governments. They were the agents of change that all societies need, especially at critical junctures in their history.
In July 1987 IDASA and the ANC organized a historic conference in Dakar in Senegal. There, Van Zyl Slabbert and Alex Borane reached an agreement with Thabo Mbeki, the then Secretary for Foreign Affairs in the National Executive of the ANC, to explore the possibility for discussions between influential Afrikaaners and the ANC on issues like the armed struggle and negotiations, political pluralism, national unity, and the future of Afrikaans and Afrikaaner culture. The negotiators also agreed to hold further meetings and on their way back from Dakar Van Zyl Slabbert and Thabo Mbeki met with the Government of Zimbabwe to explore the possibility of holding some of these meetings in Zimbabwe.
The subsequent meetings between the ANC and white South Africans, in particular the Afrikaners, were facilitated by the Zimbabwe Institute for Southern Africa's (ZISA). Between 1987 and 1993 more than 50 meetings were held. The main participants came from South African Universities, in particular the University of Stellenbosch, the business community, civil society organizations and churches. Many of the South African participants had a hard time on their return from Government officials and their respective communities. Over time this pressure eased and when P.W. Botha suffered a stroke and first the Chairmanship of the ruling party and later the Presidency of the country were taken over by F.W.de Klerk, the encounters no longer presented a risk for the white participants.
In the early 1990s the dialogue on transition to democracy in South Africa moved into South Africa. From there on the ZISA programme focused more on facilitating exposure for South Africans to the experience of independence in Zimbabwe and Southern Africa. A core activity became the Summer School Programme allowing students from different universities in South Africa to meet with students from universities in Southern and Eastern Africa to discuss issues such as, for example, the one-party-state, which at that time was a highly debated and controversial topic in the region. The South African students also participated in a public- private sector internship allowing them to experience a non-racial social and work environment so as to prepare them for life in the future South Africa.
Christopher Makuvaza is a PhD candidate at the Centre for Africa Studies at the University of the Free State reporting on his research progress.
Abstract: Zimbabwe Institute for Southern Africa's (ZISA) contribution to transition in South Africa: 1987 - 1995
The research aims to document the dialogue process facilitated by the Zimbabwe Institute for Southern Africa (ZISA) between black and white South Africans in the context of the overall mediation leading to democratic transition in South Africa. Of particular interest is the strictly facilitating role ZISA played as a non-governmental organization, and the lessons that might be learnt from ZISA's experience that could be of relevance to the current conflict contexts in the region. In the absence of most records the study relies on interviews with the some of the key former participants in the mediation, of whom seventeen have been interviewed to-date. They comprise former ZISA staff members, a former Cabinet Minister, an AZAPO official, a former ANC youth leader, a former business leader, a former IDASA employee, a former IDAF senior executive, a journalist, a former diplomat, a retired judge and five academics. This is a work in progress with the candidate seeking a receiving advice and feedback from the academic attendees at the seminar.