South African NGOs and the trials of transition

The post-election period in South Africa has been marked by trials for the NGO sector, in spite of its pivotal role in the anti-apartheid struggle. The article explores certain developments within the NGO sector, and between the NGOs and the government, to present tentative interpretations of these processes. A schematic background to the NGO sector firstly contextualises the problems now confronting these organisations. The second part provides an overview of the internal difficulties which confront NGOs. A description of how relations between the NGO sector and the government are unfolding is complemented by a discussion of NGOs and the prevailing `funding crises'. The final part is more speculative, postulating the challenges which will confront NGOs in the coming years.