People queue to vote for South Africa's national and provincial elections at a polling station in the Tlhabologang township in Coligny on May 8, 2019. - South Africans voted on May 8 in the country's sixth democratic general election since the end of apartheid in 1994.
People queue to vote for South Africa's national and provincial elections at a polling station in the Tlhabologang township in Coligny on May 8, 2019. - South Africans voted on May 8 in the country's sixth democratic general election since the end of apartheid in 1994. - 
Listen To The Story
Marketplace

The African National Congress has been the ruling party of post-apartheid South Africa since the election of Nelson Mandela in 1994.

"And in a lot of areas there’s been good progress,” said Zintle Koza, a visiting fellow from South Africa at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C. “But there’s also a recognition that things could have been better.”

Polls indicate the ANC is likely to retain control, but with a reduced share of the vote. John Campbell, a fellow in African studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and former ambassador to Nigeria, said public disillusionment with crime, immigration and corruption is diluting support for sitting president Cyril Ramaphosa.

“He has to balance his free market proclivities with the fact that there are a large number of South Africans who feel left behind,” Campbell said.

More than a quarter of the population is out of work, one of the highest unemployment rates in the world. Opposition parties claim millions of dollars that could have been spent on providing better housing, health care, essential services and education have been looted by corrupt officials.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

“I think the best compliment I can give is not to say how much your programs have taught me (a ton), but how much Marketplace has motivated me to go out and teach myself.” – Michael in Arlington, VA

As a nonprofit news organization, what matters to us is the same thing that matters to you: being a source for trustworthy, independent news that makes people smarter about business and the economy. So if Marketplace has helped you understand the economy better, make more informed financial decisions or just encouraged you to think differently, we’re asking you to give a little something back.

Become a Marketplace Investor today – in whatever amount is right for you – and keep public service journalism strong. We’re grateful for your support.

Follow Andy Uhler at @andy_uhler