1996 South African President Nelson Mandela signed a new constitution that completed a transition from a long period of white-minority rule (apartheid) to full-fledged democracy.
In April 1994 South Africa held its first all-race elections, which were won by Mandela and the ANC. As president, he established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), which investigated human rights violations under apartheid, and introduced housing, education, and economic development initiatives designed to improve the living standards of the country’s black population. In 1996 he oversaw the enactment of a new democratic constitution.
The following year Mandela resigned his post with the ANC and in 1999 did not seek a second term as South African president. After leaving office in June, he retired from active politics.