State and Revolution: Reflections from South African Institutions of Higher Learning

Mavhungu Elias Musitha


Democratic states should use democratic principles namely engagement, negotiation, discussion, persuasion and participation to resolve challenges in societies. This is in contrast to colonial and apartheid states which used police, army, imprisonment, exile or banishment from the country against blacks who demanded democratic rights. This study investigates whether democratic South Africa embraces democratic principles highlighted above to deal with its domestic problems or is merely an extension of colonial and apartheid states in addressing challenges it faces. The study makes use of literature to answer the question. This is a qualitative study. The study found that democratic South Africa uses the same undemocratic instruments as evidenced by its handling of the #FeesMustFall campaign.  #FeesMustFall leaders and students are being shot at, arrested, and imprisoned in the same jails built and used by the apartheid state, stun grenades are being thrown at them and tear gas sprayed at them. The conclusion of this study is that by implementing similar instruments of maintaining security there is no difference between the means used by oppressive colonial and apartheid governments of the past and those used by democratic SA today.

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Journal of Public Administration and Governance  ISSN 2161-7104

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