• Moshood Saka Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin, Nigeria



Apartheid system, Education, governance, social inequality, Millennium Development Goals, South Africa


The practice of the apartheid system in South Africa has been widely condemned for perpetuating enduring socio-economic inequality and for its detrimental impacts on the lives of millions of citizens. While many studies have strongly affirmed this assertion, socio-economic inequality continues to arguably engender a long-lasting struggle among the black and colored communities in post-apartheid South Africa. This places a burden on the country’s successive governments to implement long-term policies that can rectify the plight of the people. Consequently, the adoption of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2000 becomes an important reference tool for the African National Congress (ANC)-dominated government, which has initiated and implemented policies to combat inequality in the post-apartheid era. This study examines the roles and measures taken by the ANC government to address racially discriminated economic and social inequality within the framework of the MDGs. Using qualitative research methods, the study explores the background framework of the MDGs and analyzes socio-economic measures implemented by successive ANC governments between 2000 and 2015, focusing on areas such as education, poverty eradication, and healthcare. Primary and secondary sources are utilized to provide insights and support the analysis. The findings reveal that the ANC-dominated government effectively incorporated the frameworks of the MDGs into its formulation and execution of policy measures to eradicate
social inequality in South Africa. The study concludes that the effective implementation of these measures has yielded considerable
progress, effectively addressing multifaceted issues such as poverty, healthcare, education, and unemployment. This conclusion aligns
with the official South African MDG report, which unequivocally highlights the several achievements of MDG targets through policy
implementation from 2000 to 2015. 


Adejumobi, S. (2006). Governance and Poverty Reduction in Africa: A Critique of Poverty Reduction Strategy. Being a Paper Presented to the “Inter-Regional Conference on Social Policy and Welfare Regimes in Comparative Perspectives” organised by the College of Liberal University of Texas. University of Texas. Publisher

Ake, C. (2001). Democracy and Development in Africa. Spectrum Book Limited

Birchall, J. (2004). Corporative and Millennium Development Goals. Corporative Branch & Policy Integration Department International Labour Office Geneva. Publisher

Claassen, C. (2017). Explaining South Africa Xenophobia. Afrobarometer. Let the people have a say.

Fukuyama, F. (1992). The End of History and the Last Man. The New Press New York

Gauba, O.P. (2003). An Introduction to Political Theory. Macmillan India

Gibert, L.D. (2014). Prolongation of Boko Haram Insurgency in Nigeria. The International Dimension. Research on Humanities and Social Sciences Vol. 4 No.11

Grugel, J. (2002). Democratization: A Critical Introduction. Palgrave

Jinadu, A. L. (2005). Explaining & Managing Ethnic Conflict in Africa: Towards A Cultural Theory of Democracy, Centre for Advance Studies, Monograph No. 15

Livesey, Chris. (2009). A Level Sociology, A Resources –Based Learning Approach. Unit 1: Basic Concepts. Online. Retrieved May 2020 from

Lomazzi,, M, Borisch, B and Laaser, U. (2014). The Millennium Development Goals: Experience, achievement and what’s Next. ResearchGate.

Meredith, M (2011). The State of Africa: A History of the Continent since Independence. London, New York, Sydney, Toronto, New Delhi.

Momoh, A. (2006). Democracy, De-Democratization and Development in Nigeria. Nigerian Journal of International Affairs, Vol 32, No. 2

Nelson Mandela Foundation. (2004). Reflections on Ten Years of Basic Education: Changing to the Transformation of Basic Education in South Africa’s Second Decade of Democracy. South Africa. Publisher

Ogunnoiki, A.O. (2019). Xenophobic Violence in South Africa and the Reaction in Nigeria. Covenant University Journal of Politics and International Affair Vol. 7 No. 2

Orvis, S. (2001). Civil Society in Africa or African Civil Society. In Ndegwa N. Stephen (eds.), A Decade of Democracy in Africa. (19-38). Leiden, Boston. Koln

Osabuohien, S.E. and Efobi, U. (2012). Technology Diffusion and Economic Progress in Africa: Challenge and Opportunities. Published by IGI Global

Plowden, W, and Jekins, K. (2006). Governance and Nation building: The Failure of International Intervention. United Kingdom. Publisher

Prew, M. (2009). Challenges facing Education in South Africa. Education Republic of South Africa,

Ramas, K. (2009). The Challenges Facing Education in South Africa (Faculty of Arts, Design and Architecture. University of Johannesburg. Publisher

Republic of South Africa. (2013). Millennium Development Goals 1, Country Report. The South Africa I know, The Home I Understand. South Africa. Publisher

Republic of South Africa. (2013). Millennium Development Goals 2, Country Report 2013, The South Africa I know, The Home I Understand. South Africa Publisher

Saka, M. (2020). Feasibility of Democratisation in Sub-Sahara Africa: A Study of South Africa after Apartheid System. AEGIS Journal of International Relations, Vol. 4. No. 2.

Seo, S. (2008). A Study on Democratic Transition in South Africa: Democracy through Compromise and Institution Doctoral Dissertation, Department of International Politics. University of South Africa.

South African Report (2007). Millennium Development Goals Mid- term Country Reports

Thomson, A. (2010). An Introduction to African Politics. Routledge Taylor and Francis London and New York

Twum-Danso. A. (2003). African Young Soldiers the Co-option of Children, Institute of Security Studies, South Africa

UNDP. (2005). Governance for the Future Democracy and Development in the Least Developed Countries 1. United Nations. Publisher

UNDP. (2010). Beyond the Mid-point Achieving Millennium Development Goals. United States of America. Publisher

UNDP. (2013). Humanity Divided: Confronting Inequality in Developing Countries. United Nations Publisher

United Nation. (2013). Nelson Mandela and Right to Education. United Nations Publish

United Nations. (2003). Report on World Social Situation 2003: Social Vulnerability Sources and Challenges. United Nations Publish. Publisher

United Nations. (2006). The Millennium Development Goals: The Way Ahead: A Pan-European Perspective. United Nation. Publisher

United Nations. (2015). Millennium Development Goals 2013 Report. United Nations. Publisher

United Nations. (2015). Millennium Development Goals Reports of 2015. United Nations. Publisher

United Nations. (2015). We Can End Poverty: Millennium Development: Goals at a Glance. United Nations. Publisher

Warwick-Booth, L. (2013). What is Social Inequality? Published by Sage. Publisher

Mortons S, Pencheon D, and Squires N. [2017]. A National Global Framework for Health, Development and Equity needs a System Approach at every Level, British Medical Bulletin, Published by Oxford University Press

United Nations [2021]. The Sustainable Development Goals

Government of India Ministry of Statistics [2021]. Sustainable Development Goals, National Indicator Framework Progress Reports 2021

Andrew, K [2021]. Measuring Earning Inequality in South Africa Using Household Survey and Administrative Tax Micro data. Published by United Nations University.

Chatterjee A, Czajka L, and Gethin A [2021]. Wealth Inequality in South Africa, 1993-2017, Working Paper N 2021/16

International Labour Organisation [2021]. Inequalities and the World of Work, International Labour Conference 10th Session, 2021

Nwosu, C, Kollamparambil U, and Adeola O [2021]. Socio-economic Inequalities in Ability to Work from Home during the Coronavirus Pandemic: The Case Study of South Africa. National Income Dynamic Study [NIDS].

Additional Files



How to Cite