SA — the new kid on the block as far as democracy goes — is the cute little baby that Africa, like an adoring parent, has been proud to show off to the rest of the world since the demise of apartheid and the birth of the new dispensation. That pride has now given way to shame and embarrassment. It no longer praises our name. It spits it out. It’s become an insult.

After spending the better part of its history in splendid isolation because of its apartheid policies, SA once again runs the risk of being sent to purgatory. This time the rejection is much more painful because it is inflicted by our kith and kin, by people who stood with us in our darkest hour. Our victory was theirs too. There’s nothing worse than being shunned by one’s family.

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