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South Africa has three capital cities: executive Pretoria, judicial Bloemfontein and legislative Cape Town. While South Africa has a great wealth of flowering plants, only one percent of South Africa is forest, almost exclusively in the humid coastal plain of KwaZulu-Natal, where there are also areas of Southern Africa mangroves in river mouths. Its pluralistic makeup is reflected in the constitution's recognition of 11 official languages, the fourth-highest number in the world. There is great diversity in South African music. The Bantu slowly moved south. [169], During 1995–2003, the number of formal jobs decreased and informal jobs increased; overall unemployment worsened. According to the World Refugee Survey 2008, published by the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, this population numbered approximately 144,700 in 2007. In 1878 and 1879 three British attacks were successfully repelled until Garnet Wolseley defeated Sekhukhune in November 1879 with an army of 2,000 British soldiers, Boers and 10,000 Swazis. (1984). Notable white South African authors include Alan Paton, who published the novel Cry, the Beloved Country in 1948. The most southerly portion of this coastal belt is known as the Swartland and Malmesbury Plain, which is an important wheat growing region, relying on winter rains. In 2015, 71 percent of net wealth are held by 10 percent richest of the population, whereas 60 percent of the poorest held only 7 percent of the net wealth and the Gini coefficient was 0.63, whereas in 1996 was 0.61. [9] Although English is recognised as the language of commerce and science, it is only the fourth most common home language, that of only 9.6% of South Africans in 2011; nevertheless, it has become the de facto lingua franca of the nation. [224] Most deaths are experienced by economically active individuals, resulting in many AIDS orphans who in many cases depend on the state for care and financial support. The executive, legislature and judiciary are all subject to the supremacy of the Constitution, and the superior courts have the power to strike down executive actions and acts of Parliament if they are unconstitutional. In the most recent election, held on 8 May 2019, the ANC won 57.5% of the vote and 230 seats, while the main opposition, the Democratic Alliance (DA) won 20.77% of the vote and 84 seats. Many nations in Africa used this word, including the Ethiopians, Nubians, Moors, and Numidians. South Africa is often referred to as the "rainbow nation" to describe the country's multicultural diversity, especially in the wake of apartheid.[17]. Nadine Gordimer became the first South African to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, in 1991. This region is also particularly known for its wind, which blows intermittently almost all year. [174] The skills drain in South Africa tends to demonstrate racial contours given the skills distribution legacy of South Africa and has thus resulted in large white South African communities abroad. [107] In 2006, the number of fungi in South Africa was estimated at about 200,000 species, but did not take into account fungi associated with insects. [211], The adult literacy rate in 2007 was 88.7%. In 1939, the party split over the entry of the Union into World War II as an ally of the United Kingdom, a move which the National Party followers strongly opposed. Only 15% of South African jobs are in the informal sector, compared with around half in Brazil and India and nearly three-quarters in Indonesia. On 31 May 1961, the country became a republic following a referendum (only open to white voters) which narrowly passed;[63] the British-dominated Natal province largely voted against the proposal. South Africa's country code, ZA, is an abbreviation of this former official name, Zuid-Afrika. [71] Poverty among whites, which was previously rare, increased. There are even smaller groups of speakers of endangered languages, many of which are from the Khoi-San family, but receive no official status; however, some groups within South Africa are attempting to promote their use and revival. The Zulu nation defeated the British at the Battle of Isandlwana. At 1,219,912 km2 (471,011 sq mi),[83] South Africa is the 24th-largest country in the world. South Africa first won the 1995 Rugby World Cup, which it hosted. They have been marginalised to a great extent, and the remainder of their languages are in danger of becoming extinct. South Africa has played a key role as a mediator in African conflicts over the last decade, such as in Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Comoros, and Zimbabwe. Note the course of the Great Escarpment to the north of these mountain ranges.) Nelson Mandela was an international icon and a role model to many. In 1948, the National Party was elected to power. It has also served in multinational UN Peacekeeping forces such as the UN Force Intervention Brigade for example. [141][142] South Africa is one of the founding members of the African Union (AU), and has the third largest economy of all the members. Traum, Alexander (2014). It followed the 1995 Rugby World Cup by hosting the 1996 African Cup of Nations, with the national team, Bafana Bafana, going on to win the tournament. Olive Schreiner's The Story of an African Farm (1883) was a revelation in Victorian literature: it is heralded by many as introducing feminism into the novel form. [28][29][30] Archaeologists have recovered extensive fossil remains from a series of caves in Gauteng Province. [42] Dutch traders also brought thousands of enslaved people to the fledgling colony from Indonesia, Madagascar, and parts of eastern Africa. Muslims accounted for 1.5% of the population, Hindus 1.2%,[205] traditional African religion 0.3% and Judaism 0.2%. [196] These populations mainly lived in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban, Cape Town, and Port Elizabeth. The Republic of South Africa is a country in the southern region of Africa. The high Drakensberg mountains, which form the south-eastern escarpment of the Highveld, offer limited skiing opportunities in winter. [161], After 1994, government policy brought down inflation, stabilised public finances, and some foreign capital was attracted, however growth was still subpar. He was a South African nationalist and socialist who fought the apartheid regime. It is among these people that cultural traditions survive most strongly; as blacks have become increasingly urbanised and Westernised, aspects of traditional culture have declined. The primary sources of South African law are Roman-Dutch mercantile law and personal law with English Common law, as imports of Dutch settlements and British colonialism. Why would the official abbreviation come from the country's name in Dutch? p. 19. South Africa is also a member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone, Southern African Customs Union (SACU), Antarctic Treaty System (ATS), World Trade Organization (WTO), International Monetary Fund (IMF), G20, G8+5, and the Port Management Association of Eastern and Southern Africa. South Africa is currently building the Karoo Array Telescope as a pathfinder for the €1.5 billion Square Kilometre Array project. [212] South Africa has a three-tier system of education starting with primary school, followed by high school, and tertiary education in the form of (academic) universities and universities of technology. Under apartheid, schools for black people were subject to discrimination through inadequate funding and a separate syllabus called Bantu Education which only taught skills sufficient to work as labourers. South Africa has published two national climate change reports in 2011 and 2016.[115]. Winters in South Africa occur between June and August. In 1990, the National Party government took the first step towards dismantling discrimination when it lifted the ban on the ANC and other political organisations. There are eleven official names of South Africa, one in each of its eleven official languages. Linathi: The name is derived from “Linathi igama le Nkosi”, meaning the name of the Lord is with us. [124] The first European based law in South Africa was brought by the Dutch East India Company and is called Roman-Dutch law. The coastal belt to the north of the Cape Peninsula is bounded on the west by the Atlantic Ocean and the first row of north–south running Cape Fold Mountains to the east. These healers use a combination of ancestral spiritual beliefs and a belief in the spiritual and medicinal properties of local fauna and flora, commonly known as muti ('medicine'), to facilitate healing in clients. No President may serve more than two terms in office. [220] Only 16% of the population is covered by medical aid schemes. [16] It is the southernmost country on the mainland of the Old World, and the most populous country located entirely south of the equator. [163], Principal international trading partners of South Africa—besides other African countries—include Germany, the United States, China, Japan, the United Kingdom and Spain. The metropolitan municipalities, which govern the largest urban agglomerations, perform the functions of both district and local municipalities. Dias continued down the western coast of southern Africa. The Cape Fold Mountains peter out at about the 32° S line of latitude,[93] after which the coastal plain is bounded by the Great Escarpment itself. Bloemfontein . [162] From 2004 onward, economic growth picked up significantly; both employment and capital formation increased. South Africa is next to Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Lesotho and Swaziland. [44] This led to the development of a new ethnic group, the Cape Coloureds, most of whom adopted the Dutch language and Christian faith. Female | Imka, meaning “water”, is an Afrikaans name of Frisian derivative. Various researchers have located pebble tools within the Vaal River valley. The fourth chapter of the Constitution of South Africa, states that "The seat of Parliament is Cape Town, but an Act of Parliament enacted in accordance with section 76(1) and (5) may determine that the seat of Parliament is elsewhere. South Africa's official Coronavirus (Covid-19)online news and information portal. It has 2.5 million speakers and is taught in schools. [71], Along with many African nations, South Africa has been experiencing a brain drain in the past 20 years. [47] British emigration to South Africa began around 1818, subsequently culminating in the arrival of the 1820 Settlers. "[151] Six nuclear devices were completed between 1980 and 1990, but all were dismantled before South Africa signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1991. It is an official language of Eswatini, along with English, and one of the official languages of South Africa. Penny Heyns won Olympic Gold in the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. It hosts the Southern African Large Telescope, the largest optical telescope in the Southern Hemisphere. [175] However, the statistics which purport to show a brain drain are disputed and also do not account for repatriation and expiry of foreign work contracts. South Africa is the only African country to have successfully developed nuclear weapons. They migrated to the future Natal, Free State, and Transvaal regions. There are significant numbers of baobab trees in this area, near the northern end of Kruger National Park.[111]. The interior of South Africa consists of a vast, in most places almost flat, plateau with an altitude of between 1,000 m (3,300 ft) and 2,100 m (6,900 ft), highest in the east and sloping gently downwards towards the west and north, and slightly less noticeably so to the south and south-west. It is bounded to the south by 2,798 kilometres (1,739 mi) of coastline of Southern Africa stretching along the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans;[14][15][13] to the north by the neighbouring countries of Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe; and to the east and northeast by Mozambique and Eswatini (former Swaziland); and it surrounds the enclaved country of Lesotho. South Africa has lost a large area of natural habitat in the last four decades, primarily due to overpopulation, sprawling development patterns and deforestation during the 19th century. Breyten Breytenbach was jailed for his involvement with the guerrilla movement against apartheid. [45] The Boers formed loose militias, which they termed commandos, and forged alliances with Khoisan peoples to repel Xhosa raids. 15.1% had no religious affiliation, 0.6% were "other" and 1.4% were "unspecified. [105] The country is ranked sixth out of the world's seventeen megadiverse countries. It was imported before the codification of European law into the Napoleonic Code and is comparable in many ways to Scots law. VI, p. 750. The Afrikaans for "South Africa" is "Suid-Afrika" so SA would be more logical. He reached as far up the eastern coast of Africa as, what he called, Rio do Infante, probably the present-day Groot River, in May 1488, but on his return he saw the Cape, which he first named Cabo das Tormentas ('Cape of Storms'). There are even smaller reserves of forests that are out of the reach of fire, known as montane forests. South Africa is a multiethnic society encompassing a wide variety of cultures, languages, and religions. After unification in 1910, South Africa had its own parliament which passed laws specific for South Africa, building on those previously passed for the individual member colonies. It is the country's legislative capital. The plays of Athol Fugard have been regularly premiered in fringe theatres in South Africa, London (Royal Court Theatre) and New York. In the first quarter of 2011, confidence levels for graduate professionals were recorded at a level of 84% in a Professional Provident Society (PPS) survey. The National Council of Provinces, the upper house, consists of ninety members, with each of the nine provincial legislatures electing ten members. As a concession to the Westminster system, the appointment of the president remained an appointment by parliament, and virtually powerless until P. W. Botha's Constitution Act of 1983, which eliminated the office of Prime Minister and instated a near-unique "strong presidency" responsible to parliament. South Africa signed the Rio Convention on Biological Diversity on 4 June 1994, and became a party to the convention on 2 November 1995. We’re off to a place bursting with wonderful wildlife, rich culture and mind-blowing history! This was south of the furthest point reached in 1485 by his predecessor, the Portuguese navigator Diogo Cão (Cape Cross, north of the bay). South Africa has also developed into a major wine producer, with some of the best vineyards lying in valleys around Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Paarl and Barrydale.[235]. South Africa held its first universal elections in 1994, which the ANC won by an overwhelming majority. [92][93] (These parallel ranges of fold mountains are shown on the map, above left. The organization urged the South African government to take immediate actions ensuring the safety of the foreign national truck drivers putting up with violence, harassment, intimidation, stoning, bombing, and shooting, by local truck drivers in the country.[181]. In the first two decades of the 19th century, the Zulu people grew in power and expanded their territory under their leader, Shaka. [217] The healthcare spending in the country is about 9% of GDP. During the Dutch and British colonial years, racial segregation was mostly informal, though some legislation was enacted to control the settlement and movement of indigenous people, including the Native Location Act of 1879 and the system of pass laws. South Africa produced Formula One motor racing's 1979 world champion Jody Scheckter. South Africa is a developing country and ranks at 114th on the Human Development Index, the seventh-highest in Africa. [131] In an attempt to reduce crime rate, the police arrested over 500 undocumented foreigners in a raid in August 2019. Even though travel has seen a sharp decline in recent months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, South Africa is launching a brand new airline that will begin running domestic flights in December 2020. [196], South Africa has 11 official languages:[197] Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, English, Pedi,[198] Tswana, Southern Sotho, Tsonga, Swazi, Venda, and Southern Ndebele (in order of first language speakers).

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