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South Africa-Penal Code





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South Africa Index

South Africa's courts are empowered to impose punishments of death (through early 1995), imprisonment, periodic imprisonment for a total of between 100 and 2,000 hours over a period of weeks or months, being declared a "habitual criminal," commitment to an institution other than prison, fines, and whipping. Those convicted of lesser crimes are often given a choice of punishment--for example, a fine or imprisonment. During the apartheid era, the courts imposed prison terms of several days to several weeks for pass law violations, and ten to twenty years for membership in the ANC or the SACP, which were banned organizations until 1990. Other typical prison sentences are terms of two to ten years for robbery; up to twenty years for assault or rape; ten to fifteen years for possessing an illegal firearm; ten to twenty years for attempted murder; and twenty years to life in prison for murder.

Murder and treason were capital crimes through the 1980s, although whites often received light sentences for crimes against black people, and they were almost never sentenced to death for murdering blacks. All executions were suspended in early 1990, and although more than 240 people were sentenced to death between 1990 and early 1995, no one was executed during that time. Parliament abolished the death penalty in early 1995.

Whipping is frequently used to punish juveniles for public misbehavior, but may only be imposed on male offenders under the age of thirty. The punishment may not exceed seven strokes of a cane. Whipping is done in private, although the parents of a juvenile can be present. This punishment was imposed on more than 30,000 juveniles and young men each year in the early 1990s.

Human Rights and National Reconciliation

South Africa's record on human rights came under frequent attack during the apartheid era, and improving it became a high priority for achieving national reconciliation and international legitimacy in the 1990s. South Africa had more than 2,500 political prisoners in 1990, according to the UN Human Rights Commission. Responding to criticism on this sensitive subject during the early 1990s negotiations, then President de Klerk agreed to review all cases of crimes against state security, and as a result, the government released 933 political prisoners by April 1991. It rejected 364 appeals for release because of the nature of the crimes involved. In September 1992, based on special requests by ANC leader Nelson Mandela, and through the intervention of UN special representative, former United States Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, the government released an additional 400 political prisoners as a further step toward successful negotiations. Officials went ahead with election preparations even though the issue of political prisoners was not fully resolved, and the new government in mid-1994 released from prison several hundred people who had been convicted of nonviolent crimes. Among them were an unreported number whose offenses were considered political.

The ANC faced its own internal accusations of human rights violations during the early 1990s. Former detainees from ANC prison camps alleged that they had been held in harsh conditions in Angola, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, or Zambia. Human rights monitors confirmed that prisoners in these camps had sometimes been tortured and, in a few cases, had been executed. Moreover, they alleged that some of the camps continued to be in operation, even after the ANC had announced the suspension of its armed struggle against apartheid. Mandela promised to investigate and to end these practices, but would not agree to air the allegations in public.

The interim constitution's chapter on fundamental rights guarantees freedom of speech, the press, assembly, association, and religion, as well as the freedom to travel and to live where one chooses, and the protection of minority rights. The interim constitution repealed Section 29 of the Internal Security Act, which had allowed the government to detain individuals for indefinite periods without charging them with a crime. Subsequent legislation established an independent Human Rights Commission and Office of the Public Protector, both to be appointed by the parliament. The public protector is charged with investigating allegations of abuse or incompetence against members of the government, including the police.

Despite obvious improvements in human rights policies and practices in the mid-1990s, several forms of human rights abuse continued at unacceptable levels and appeared to involve high-level police officials. Thirty-one unexplained deaths occurred in police custody in 1994, according to the private South African Human Rights Committee. This number was eight fewer than in 1993, and fifty-six fewer than in 1990. Pathologists' reports confirmed instances of police abuse in some of the 1994 deaths, and a team of international human rights monitors and independent experts uncovered a pattern of torture of detainees by some police personnel in the Johannesburg area.

The Goldstone Commission's investigations had unearthed prima facie evidence implicating senior police officials in supplying weapons to the Zulu-based IFP in 1993 and 1994, and had noted that some of these weapons had surfaced at the scene of IFP attacks on political opponents. These conclusions had resulted in the retirement of several senior police officers; one police training unit commander was charged with murder and later sentenced to life in prison.

Soon after the new government was in office in 1994, it began investigating allegations of "hit squads" within the KwaZulu police (predominantly IFP supporters) and launched an investigation into ANC-instigated violence in KwaZulu-Natal. Despite some initial reluctance, the provincial government cooperated with the international human rights monitors and allowed them access to prisons and detainees.

Violence against women continued to occur with regularity through the mid-1990s. The Department of Justice issued chilling statistics in 1994: more than one-half of all women who were murdered had died at the hands of their male partners. About 43 percent of women questioned in one study said they had been the victim of marital rape or assault. The police received reports of more than 25,200 rapes between January 1 and October 31, 1994--a 17 percent increase over the same period in 1993--but estimated that most such incidents were not reported and only about 25 percent of reported rapes resulted in convictions. Numerous laws were passed, both before and after the April 1994 elections, aimed at protecting women against abuse, but these laws were often ignored or bypassed. The new government pledged stricter legislation and stronger efforts to establish fair treatment for women.

The new government's promises of an improved human rights record and of security forces that are accountable to the population helped to set the tone for democratic reforms in 1994 and 1995. But the security forces faced even greater challenges than the political leaders in trying to implement these reforms. Members of the police, in particular, had to abandon their apartheid-related agendas--enforcing or opposing the old order--while, at the same time, upholding the changing laws that apply to the entire population. They had to establish "instant legitimacy," as several South African scholars observed, in the midst of change.

Legislation in 1995 established a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to deal with grievances arising out of human rights violations of the apartheid era. The commission's goals are to establish the truth about such crimes, to identify victims and determine their fate, to recommend reparation for victims and survivors, and to recommend to the president amnesty or indemnity under limited circumstances. Any grant of amnesty initially applied only to politically motivated acts committed before October 8, 1990, and subsequent legislation extended the cut-off date to May 10, 1994.

President Mandela appointed Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu to chair the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and a respected jurist, Alex Boraine, as his deputy. The commission began hearing testimony in March 1996, and it scheduled hearings in each province to enable South Africans from all regions to testify or to apply for amnesty. By mid-1996 several hundred testimonies had been heard, most of them concerning brutality or other mistreatment by the former security forces.

With less than one-half of its hearings completed in mid-1996, the commission was generally viewed as a positive step toward national reconciliation. A few outspoken critics disagreed, however, and charged the commission with impeding justice. Among these were relatives of ANC activists who had been killed by the security forces; some survivors criticized the commission for even considering amnesty applications from those who might otherwise have been brought to justice in the courts. Some former members of the security forces, for their part, criticized the commission for its apparent willingness to accept allegations against them. A few others who had testified before the commission complained that they had received little or no compensation for their losses, although most requests for compensation had not yet been acted upon by mid-1996. Despite these complaints, it appeared likely that the hearings would contribute to a broader public understanding of the violence that had bolstered the implementation of apartheid.

*          *          *

South Africa has an extensive military history literature. Official accounts are available in numerous publications by Neil D. Orpen, such as The History of the Transvaal Horse Artillery, 1904-1974 ; The Cape Town Rifles: The `Duke,' 1856-1984 ; War in the Desert ; East African and Abyssinian Campaigns ; and Prince Alfred's Guard, 1856-1966 . Helmoed-Römer Heitman's The South African War Machine , South African Arms and Armour , and War in Angola: The Final South African Phase also cover important areas of military history. Different historical viewpoints are found in A. N. Porter's The Origins of the South African War: Joseph Chamberlain and the Diplomacy of Imperialism, 1895-1899 and Carman Miller's Painting the Map Red: Canada and the South African War, 1899-1902 . An interesting comparative perspective is found in James O. Gump's The Dust Rose like Smoke: The Subjugation of the Zulu and the Sioux . Jacklyn Cock's Women and War in South Africa presents a gender-related view of the subject.

The climate of domestic violence of the 1980s is analyzed in publications of the South African Institute of Race Relations, such as the annual Race Relations Survey , and in John Kane-Berman's Political Violence in South Africa . Political Violence and the Struggle in South Africa , edited by N. Chabani Manganyi and André du Toit; Policing the Conflict in South Africa, edited by Mary L. Mathews, Philip B. Heymann, and Anthony S. Mathews; and Policing South Africa: The South African Police and the Transition from Apartheid , by Gavin Cawthra, are also valuable.

South Africa's regional security policies since the early 1980s are discussed in numerous periodicals and monographs. High Noon in Southern Africa: Making Peace in a Rough Neighborhood by Chester A. Crocker, and Toward Peace and Security in Southern Africa , edited by Harvey Glickman, discuss Western points of view on that era. The New Is Not Yet Born: Conflict Resolution in Southern Africa by Thomas Ohlson and Stephen John Stedman with Robert Davies reviews regional clashes and peacemaking efforts in recent decades.

The changing security situation in the mid-1990s is outlined in the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) Yearbook, 1995 ; "Prospects for Security and Stability in the New South Africa" by Carole Birch in Brassey's Defence Yearbook ; and "Current Trends in South Africa's Security Establishment" by Annette Seegers in Armed Forces and Society . Jane's Information Group's special report of July 1994, Whither South Africa's Warriors? , is a valuable contribution. The South African National Defence Force periodical, Salut, conveys brief insights into military concerns in the mid-1990s. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)

Data as of May 1996



BackgroundDutch traders landed at the southern tip of modern day South Africa in 1652 and established a stopover point on the spice route between the Netherlands and the Far East, founding the city of Cape Town. After the British seized the Cape of Good Hope area in 1806, many of the Dutch settlers (the Boers) trekked north to found their own republics. The discovery of diamonds (1867) and gold (1886) spurred wealth and immigration and intensified the subjugation of the native inhabitants. The Boers resisted British encroachments but were defeated in the Boer War (1899-1902); however, the British and the Afrikaners, as the Boers became known, ruled together beginning in 1910 under the Union of South Africa, which became a republic in 1961 after a whites-only referendum. In 1948, the National Party was voted into power and instituted a policy of apartheid - the separate development of the races - which favored the white minority at the expense of the black majority. The African National Congress (ANC) led the opposition to apartheid and many top ANC leaders, such as Nelson MANDELA, spent decades in South Africa's prisons. Internal protests and insurgency, as well as boycotts by some Western nations and institutions, led to the regime's eventual willingness to negotiate a peaceful transition to majority rule. The first multi-racial elections in 1994 brought an end to apartheid and ushered in majority rule under an ANC-led government. South Africa since then has struggled to address apartheid-era imbalances in decent housing, education, and health care. ANC infighting, which has grown in recent years, came to a head in September 2008 when President Thabo MBEKI resigned, and Kgalema MOTLANTHE, the party's General-Secretary, succeeded him as interim president. Jacob ZUMA became president after the ANC won general elections in April 2009.
LocationSouthern Africa, at the southern tip of the continent of Africa
Area(sq km)total: 1,219,090 sq km
land: 1,214,470 sq km
water: 4,620 sq km
note: includes Prince Edward Islands (Marion Island and Prince Edward Island)
Geographic coordinates29 00 S, 24 00 E
Land boundaries(km)total: 4,862 km
border countries: Botswana 1,840 km, Lesotho 909 km, Mozambique 491 km, Namibia 967 km, Swaziland 430 km, Zimbabwe 225 km

Coastline(km)2,798 km

Climatemostly semiarid; subtropical along east coast; sunny days, cool nights

Elevation extremes(m)lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Njesuthi 3,408 m
Natural resourcesgold, chromium, antimony, coal, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, tin, uranium, gem diamonds, platinum, copper, vanadium, salt, natural gas
Land use(%)arable land: 12.1%
permanent crops: 0.79%
other: 87.11% (2005)

Irrigated land(sq km)14,980 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources(cu km)50 cu km (1990)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)total: 12.5 cu km/yr (31%/6%/63%)
per capita: 264 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazardsprolonged droughts
Environment - current issueslack of important arterial rivers or lakes requires extensive water conservation and control measures; growth in water usage outpacing supply; pollution of rivers from agricultural runoff and urban discharge; air pollution resulting in acid rain; soil erosion; desertification
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - noteSouth Africa completely surrounds Lesotho and almost completely surrounds Swaziland
Population49,052,489
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2009 est.)
Age structure(%)0-14 years: 28.9% (male 7,093,328/female 7,061,579)
15-64 years: 65.8% (male 16,275,424/female 15,984,181)
65 years and over: 5.4% (male 1,075,117/female 1,562,860) (2009 est.)
Median age(years)total: 24.4 years
male: 24.1 years
female: 24.8 years (2009 est.)
Population growth rate(%)0.281% (2009 est.)
Birth rate(births/1,000 population)19.93 births/1,000 population (2009 est.)
Death rate(deaths/1,000 population)16.99 deaths/1,000 population (July 2009 est.)

Net migration rate(migrant(s)/1,000 population)-0.13 migrant(s)/1,000 population
note: there is an increasing flow of Zimbabweans into South Africa and Botswana in search of better economic opportunities (2009 est.)
Urbanization(%)urban population: 61% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 1.4% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)
Sex ratio(male(s)/female)at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.69 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2009 est.)
Infant mortality rate(deaths/1,000 live births)total: 44.42 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 48.66 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 40.1 deaths/1,000 live births (2009 est.)

Life expectancy at birth(years)total population: 48.98 years
male: 49.81 years
female: 48.13 years (2009 est.)

Total fertility rate(children born/woman)2.38 children born/woman (2009 est.)
Nationalitynoun: South African(s)
adjective: South African
Ethnic groups(%)black African 79%, white 9.6%, colored 8.9%, Indian/Asian 2.5% (2001 census)

Religions(%)Zion Christian 11.1%, Pentecostal/Charismatic 8.2%, Catholic 7.1%, Methodist 6.8%, Dutch Reformed 6.7%, Anglican 3.8%, Muslim 1.5%, other Christian 36%, other 2.3%, unspecified 1.4%, none 15.1% (2001 census)
Languages(%)IsiZulu 23.8%, IsiXhosa 17.6%, Afrikaans 13.3%, Sepedi 9.4%, English 8.2%, Setswana 8.2%, Sesotho 7.9%, Xitsonga 4.4%, other 7.2% (2001 census)

Country nameconventional long form: Republic of South Africa
conventional short form: South Africa
former: Union of South Africa
abbreviation: RSA
Government typerepublic
Capitalname: Pretoria (administrative capital)
geographic coordinates: 25 42 S, 28 13 E
time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
note: Cape Town (legislative capital); Bloemfontein (judicial capital)
Administrative divisions9 provinces; Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North-West, Western Cape
Constitution10 December 1996; note - certified by the Constitutional Court on 4 December 1996; was signed by then President MANDELA on 10 December 1996; and entered into effect on 4 February 1997

Legal systembased on Roman-Dutch law and English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Jacob ZUMA (since 9 May 2009); Executive Deputy President Kgalema MOTLANTHE (since 11 May 2009); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Jacob ZUMA (since 9 May 2009); Executive Deputy President Kgalema MOTLANTHE (since 11 May 2009)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president
elections: president elected by the National Assembly for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 6 May 2009 (next to be held in 2014)
election results: Jacob ZUMA elected president; National Assembly vote - Jacob ZUMA 277, Mvume DANDALA 47, other 76

Legislative branchbicameral Parliament consisting of the National Council of Provinces (90 seats, 10 members elected by each of the nine provincial legislatures for five-year terms; has special powers to protect regional interests, including the safeguarding of cultural and linguistic traditions among ethnic minorities) and the National Assembly (400 seats; members are elected by popular vote under a system of proportional representation to serve five-year terms); note - following the implementation of the new constitution on 4 February 1997, the former Senate was disbanded and replaced by the National Council of Provinces with essentially no change in membership and party affiliations, although the new institution's responsibilities have been changed somewhat by the new constitution
elections: National Assembly and National Council of Provinces - last held on 22 April 2009 (next to be held in April 2014)
election results: National Council of Provinces - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; National Assembly - percent of vote by party - ANC 65.9%, DA 16.7%, COPE 7.4%, IFP 4.6%, other 5.4%; seats by party - ANC 264, DA 67, COPE 30, IFP 18, other 21

Judicial branchConstitutional Court; Supreme Court of Appeals; High Courts; Magistrate Courts

Political pressure groups and leadersCongress of South African Trade Unions or COSATU [Zwelinzima VAVI, general secretary]; South African Communist Party or SACP [Blade NZIMANDE, general secretary]; South African National Civics Organization or SANCO [Mlungisi HLONGWANE, national president]
note: note - COSATU and SACP are in a formal alliance with the ANC
International organization participationACP, AfDB, AU, BIS, C, FAO, G-20, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MONUC, NAM, NSG, OPCW, Paris Club (associate), PCA, SACU, SADC, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Flag descriptiontwo equal width horizontal bands of red (top) and blue separated by a central green band that splits into a horizontal Y, the arms of which end at the corners of the hoist side; the Y embraces a black isosceles triangle from which the arms are separated by narrow yellow bands; the red and blue bands are separated from the green band and its arms by narrow white stripes

Economy - overviewSouth Africa is a middle-income, emerging market with an abundant supply of natural resources; well-developed financial, legal, communications, energy, and transport sectors; a stock exchange that is 17th largest in the world; and modern infrastructure supporting an efficient distribution of goods to major urban centers throughout the region. Growth was robust from 2004 to 2008 as South Africa reaped the benefits of macroeconomic stability and a global commodities boom, but began to slow in the second half of 2008 due to the global financial crisis' impact on commodity prices and demand. However, unemployment remains high and outdated infrastructure has constrained growth. At the end of 2007, South Africa began to experience an electricity crisis because state power supplier Eskom suffered supply problems with aged plants, necessitating "load-shedding" cuts to residents and businesses in the major cities. Daunting economic problems remain from the apartheid era - especially poverty, lack of economic empowerment among the disadvantaged groups, and a shortage of public transportation. South African economic policy is fiscally conservative but pragmatic, focusing on controlling inflation, maintaining a budget surplus, and using state-owned enterprises to deliver basic services to low-income areas as a means to increase job growth and household income.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$492.2 billion (2008 est.)
$477.4 billion (2007 est.)
$454.2 billion (2006 est.)
note: data are in 2008 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$276.8 billion (2008 est.)
GDP - real growth rate(%)3.1% (2008 est.)
5.1% (2007 est.)
5.3% (2006 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$10,100 (2008 est.)
$9,900 (2007 est.)
$9,500 (2006 est.)
note: data are in 2008 US dollars
GDP - composition by sector(%)agriculture: 3.3%
industry: 33.7%
services: 63% (2008 est.)
Labor force17.79 million economically active (2008 est.)

Labor force - by occupation(%)agriculture: 9%
industry: 26%
services: 65% (2007 est.)
Unemployment rate(%)22.9% (2008 est.)
24.3% (2007 est.)
Population below poverty line(%)50% (2000 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share(%)lowest 10%: 1.3%
highest 10%: 44.7% (2000)
Distribution of family income - Gini index65 (2005)
59.3 (1994)
Investment (gross fixed)(% of GDP)23.2% of GDP (2008 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $77.43 billion
expenditures: $79.9 billion (2008 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)(%)11.3% (2008 est.)
6.5% (2007 est.)

Stock of money$44.66 billion (31 December 2008)
$58.49 billion (31 December 2007)
Stock of quasi money$124.1 billion (31 December 2008)
$141.9 billion (31 December 2007)
Stock of domestic credit$214.8 billion (31 December 2008)
$254.9 billion (31 December 2007)
Market value of publicly traded shares$491.3 billion (31 December 2008)
$833.5 billion (31 December 2007)
$715 billion (31 December 2006)
Economic aid - recipient$700 million (2005)

Public debt(% of GDP)31.6% of GDP (2008 est.)
45.9% of GDP (2004 est.)
Agriculture - productscorn, wheat, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; beef, poultry, mutton, wool, dairy products
Industriesmining (world's largest producer of platinum, gold, chromium), automobile assembly, metalworking, machinery, textiles, iron and steel, chemicals, fertilizer, foodstuffs, commercial ship repair

Industrial production growth rate(%)1% (2008 est.)

Current account balance-$20.98 billion (2008 est.)
-$20.78 billion (2007 est.)
Exports$86.12 billion (2008 est.)
$75.92 billion (2007 est.)

Exports - commodities(%)gold, diamonds, platinum, other metals and minerals, machinery and equipment
Exports - partners(%)Japan 11.1%, US 11.1%, Germany 8%, UK 6.8%, China 6%, Netherlands 5.2% (2008)
Imports$90.57 billion (2008 est.)
$81.66 billion (2007 est.)

Imports - commodities(%)machinery and equipment, chemicals, petroleum products, scientific instruments, foodstuffs
Imports - partners(%)Germany 11.2%, China 11.1%, US 7.9%, Saudi Arabia 6.2%, Japan 5.5%, UK 4% (2008)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$34.07 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
$32.94 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Debt - external$71.81 billion (31 December 2008)
$75.28 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$120 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
$110.4 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$63.57 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
$65.88 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Exchange ratesrand (ZAR) per US dollar - 7.9576 (2008 est.), 7.05 (2007), 6.7649 (2006), 6.3593 (2005), 6.4597 (2004)

Currency (code)rand (ZAR)

Telephones - main lines in use4.425 million (2008)
Telephones - mobile cellular45 million (2008)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: the system is the best developed and most modern in Africa
domestic: combined fixed-line and mobile-cellular teledensity exceeds 110 telephones per 100 persons; consists of carrier-equipped open-wire lines, coaxial cables, microwave radio relay links, fiber-optic cable, radiotelephone communication stations, and wireless local loops; key centers are Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth, and Pretoria
international: country code - 27; the SAT-3/WASC and SAFE fiber optic cable systems connect South Africa to Europe and Asia; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean and 2 Atlantic Ocean)
Internet country code.za
Internet users4.187 million (2008)
Airports607 (2009)
Pipelines(km)condensate 11 km; gas 908 km; oil 980 km; refined products 1,379 km (2008)
Roadways(km)total: 362,099 km
paved: 73,506 km (includes 239 km of expressways)
unpaved: 288,593 km (2002)

Ports and terminalsCape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Richards Bay, Saldanha Bay
Military branchesSouth African National Defense Force (SANDF): South African Army, South African Navy (SAN), South African Air Force (SAAF), Joint Operations Command, Military Intelligence, South African Military Health Services (2009)
Military service age and obligation(years of age)18 years of age for voluntary military service; women are eligible to serve in noncombat roles; 2-year service obligation (2007)
Manpower available for military servicemales age 16-49: 11,622,507
females age 16-49: 11,501,537 (2008 est.)
Manpower fit for military servicemales age 16-49: 7,641,557
females age 16-49: 6,518,793 (2009 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annuallymale: 511,616
female: 510,540 (2009 est.)
Military expenditures(% of GDP)1.7% of GDP (2006)
Military - notewith the end of apartheid and the establishment of majority rule, former military, black homelands forces, and ex-opposition forces were integrated into the South African National Defense Force (SANDF); as of 2003 the integration process was considered complete
Disputes - internationalSouth Africa has placed military along the border to apprehend the thousands of Zimbabweans fleeing economic dysfunction and political persecution; as of January 2007, South Africa also supports large numbers of refugees and asylum seekers from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (33,000), Somalia (20,000), Burundi (6,500), and other states in Africa (26,000); managed dispute with Namibia over the location of the boundary in the Orange River; in 2006, Swazi king advocates resort to ICJ to claim parts of Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal from South Africa

Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 10,772 (Democratic Republic of Congo); 7,818 (Somalia); 5,759 (Angola) (2007)
Trafficking in personscurrent situation: South Africa is a source, transit, and destination country for men, women, and children trafficked for forced labor and sexual exploitation; women and girls are trafficked internally - and occasionally to European and Asian countries - for sexual exploitation; women from other African countries are trafficked to South Africa and, less frequently, onward to Europe for sexual exploitation; men and boys are trafficked from neighboring countries for forced agricultural labor; Asian and Eastern European women are trafficked to South Africa for debt-bonded sexual exploitation
tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List - South Africa is on the Tier 2 Watch List for a fourth consecutive year for its failure to show increasing efforts to address trafficking; the government provided inadequate data in 2007 on trafficking crimes investigated or prosecuted, or on resulting convictions or sentences; it also did not provide information on its efforts to protect victims of trafficking; the country continues to deport and/or prosecute suspected foreign victims without providing appropriate protective services (2008)
Electricity - production(kWh)240.3 billion kWh (2007 est.)
Electricity - production by source(%)fossil fuel: 93.5%
hydro: 1.1%
nuclear: 5.5%
other: 0% (2001)
Electricity - consumption(kWh)215.1 billion kWh (2007 est.)
Electricity - exports(kWh)14.16 billion kWh (2008 est.)
Electricity - imports(kWh)10.57 billion kWh (2008 est.)
Oil - production(bbl/day)195,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Oil - consumption(bbl/day)583,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Oil - exports(bbl/day)128,500 bbl/day (2007 est.)
Oil - imports(bbl/day)490,500 bbl/day (2007 est.)
Oil - proved reserves(bbl)15 million bbl (1 January 2009 est.)
Natural gas - production(cu m)3.25 billion cu m (2008 est.)
Natural gas - consumption(cu m)6.45 billion cu m (2008 est.)
Natural gas - exports(cu m)0 cu m (2008)
Natural gas - proved reserves(cu m)27.16 million cu m (1 January 2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate(%)18.1% (2007 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS5.7 million (2007 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths350,000 (2007 est.)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: intermediate
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
water contact disease: schistosomiasis (2009)
Literacy(%)definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 86.4%
male: 87%
female: 85.7% (2003 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)(years)total: 13 years
male: 13 years
female: 13 years (2004)
Education expenditures(% of GDP)5.4% of GDP (2006)








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