First, I need to make a correction to your question; the problem was never Apartheid in South Africa. Apartheid simply means a system that mandates the separation between Blacks, Coloreds, and Whites.
Being APART from Whites has never been a problem for Africans, not in South Africa, not even in the United States during Segregation. Black people existed and thrived most of our history APART from Whites! So, being APART from Whites ain’t the problem, in fact, it may eventually be the ultimate solution.
So, we stop asserting that Apartheid, or being legally, geographically, culturally, or physically APART from Whites somehow inherently hurts or deprives Blacks.
Secondly, Nelson Mandela ain’t ended shit, he entrenched and legitimized neo-colonialism, and Capitalism in South African and the entire region. So fuck Nelly Mandela and his tarnished legacy.
Now, the real problem is White Domination, Colonization, and theft of Land/Labor/Resources, which is the real problem (not our proximity to Whites, which is all we got in the US and South Africa, shared fucking public accommodations after centuries of atrocities and exploitation, fuck, that shit!)
The reason that it took South Africans so long is:
1. …Cuz it didn’t take SA long actually. Apartheid listed between 1948-1994! The colonization of Africa only got started in the late 1800s! So if we look at shit from a historical context, African is doing better than almost any other continent in throwing off oppression and colonization! The British colonized Ireland for over 800 years!
They have never been able to hold on to an African colony for that long, not even half as long. Shit, even the US is collapsing and it ain’t even 300 years old! So we as Africans need to stop being so down on ourselves, the fight ain’t over, but we making respectable progress….when we make our minds up to engage in progress. The Struggle Continue in South African and the projections are improving, but the fight must be sustained and intensified, even if Whites put Black puppets at the helm, like they did in the US.
2. ….Cuz of Fragmentation! Fragmentation is always fucking us up! No matter where you see Black rebellion, Fragmentation is always fucking us up; and out enemies have become masters of exploiting and intensifying our fragmentation.
What’s fragmentation? Well, it’s the little, irrelevant divisions we have among ourselves. Tribal, class, skin tone, religious, etc. South Africans kept bumping their heads over BS like tribal affiliations which made it harder, and continues to make it harder to destroy and expel our true enemies. Our oppressors have their differences, but they have superseding ideas and mandates that allow them to set aside their problems when it comes to fighing us and taking our shit; we don’t have that some superseding ideal and mandate for when it comes to opposing Black oppression. White have this ideal of Whiteness and Manifest Destiny, Asians have Sinocentricism; Africans were given Pan-Africanism, but we have not cultivated and formalized it yet, so our struggle get hampered by petty side squabbles.
3. ….Cuz we fight for the wrong shit, we struggle for reforms when we should be struggling for Revolution, we seek integration and mixing we we should be struggling to expel all invaders from our lands, we fight for state or regional freedom when we should be struggling for Global African Liberation! We keep doing half measures that are quickly undermined by our oppressors! We need a World Wide Global Pan-African Revolutionary Struggle; reforms in South African don’t mean shit if they don’t feed the Black Liberation Struggle for all other Africans across the globe. So, continue the Struggle.
Well, there are plenty of other reasons, but those are the top three; and I think we have both reasons for optimism and pride, but also for rage and urgency in South Africa and across the African world.