In the mid-1990s, SA found itself in a crisis that would set it off on the most decisive course correction since the dawn of all-race democracy.

Two non-career politicians — Derek Keys and Chris Liebenberg — resigned as finance ministers in quick succession. This gave the new ANC government a chance to appoint its first black executive, Trevor Manuel, as the political head of the Treasury. As if that was not enough for Nelson Mandela, FW de Klerk, leader of the National Party and Madiba’s second deputy, pulled the NP out of the government of national unity.

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