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Andrew Dodgshon Reviews A Legacy of Liberation: Thabo Mbeki and the Future of the South African Dream by Mark Gevisser

A Legacy of Liberation: Thabo Mbeki and the Future of the South African DreamVerdict: carrot for the international edition of Mark Gevisser‘s monumental biography.

“The king is dead, long live the king” may not have been uttered at the conference of the African National Congress at Polokwane in 2007 when Jacob Zuma ousted Thabo Mbeki as president of the ANC but it just as well might have been. Coming in the wake of Mbeki’s denial of the AIDS epidemic, a controversial and probably corrupt multi-billion rand arms deal and his “quiet diplomacy” appeasement of Robert Mugabe’s regime in Zimbabwe, Polokwane marked the end of Mbeki’s lifelong role in the ANC and politics in South Africa.

His political obituaries were written as he tried to stay in office even though he had no power. A study of what his legacy to South Africa and, indeed, the world, is or might be is timely.

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