|Nelson Mandela "Amadelakufa!" (Death Defiance!)|
The apartheid is a system of racial segregation that was imposed by the South African government. It was founded in 1948 by the South African nationalist party. The decision for apartheid made a great state of unrest in South Africa and the country was on the brink of civil war prior to Mandela's election. The new system of government dictated that the citizens of South Africa were separated into three groups: the whites foremost, then the colored people, (who had a white parent and were half colored) and the Asians, and then finally the blacks.
The apartheid's goal was to segregate the colored people and put them in the minority. Their goal was to put all of the blacks into their own designated homelands, take away the blacks' citizenship of South Africa, and rid them of any involvement in the parliament, (which had control over all of the homelands). The homeland administrations did not want this, nevertheless the colored citizens needed passes to get into their own country. They also took away their voting rights and restricted them to their own homelands.
The course of action that the African government took to make all this happen was brutal. Many protests were made because of the unfair treatment and obvious segregation; however the African government soon put a stop to this by passing the Public Safety and Criminal Law Amendment Acts which gave the government the power to give large fines, imprisonments, and whippings. In one instance a large group of blacks in Sharpville refused to carry their passes. The government issued a "state of Emergency" and it lasted for 156 days; leaving 69 people dead and 187 wounded.
Mandela fought for an end to this apartheid. He was one of the leaders of the ANC, which led to his imprsonment at Robben Island for twenty-seven years after the famous Rivonia trial. The racist laws ended with Mandela's election in 1994, and the African government started to change for the better.