South Africa since apartheid - 1994. Historic elections – On April 27, 1994, a long line of people snake toward a polling station in the black township of Soweto outside of Johannesburg in the nation's first all-race elections.
1994. Nelson Mandela elected as president – Nelson Mandela casts his historic vote during South Africa's first democratic general elections. The freedom fighter and president of the African National Congress, who had previously spent 27 years locked up in prison, reconciled South Africa after the fall of apartheid.
1994. Mandela takes oath as president – Mandela is sworn in on May 10, becoming South Africa's first black president.
1995. South Africa win the Rugby World Cup – Under the watchful eye of Mandela, captain François Pienaar leads his team to a 15-12 victory over New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup final. Sporting a Springbok jersey and cap, Mandela presents the trophy in front of a huge crowd at Ellis Park, Johannesburg, on June 24, 1995.
1996. Archbishop Desmond Tutu oversees Truth and Reconciliation Commission – The Nobel Peace Prize laureate chairs the post-apartheid restorative justice program where statements are heard from both victims and perpetrators of gross human rights violations.
1996. New constitution signed – The constitution is signed on December 4 and comes into effect early the following year. No law or government can supersede its provisions and is widely regarded as one of the most progressive constitutions in the world.
1999. Thabo Mbeki becomes second president in a free South Africa – An economist and a longtime pillar of the ANC, Thabo Mbeki becomes South Africa's president on June 16. In 2002-2003, Mbeki, whose father, Govan, was in prison with Mandela, also served as chairman of the African Union.
2004. Hero of the anti-apartheid movement, Walter Sisulu, dies – Walter Sisulu was among the most respected leaders of the freedom movement in South Africa. The former ANC secretary-general was also jailed at Robben Island for more than 25 years.
2004. Mbeki elected for second term – In what is the third presidential election since the end of apartheid, the ANC leader is re-elected for his second and final term.
2006. Same-sex marriage is legalized – South Africa becomes only the fifth country in the world, and the first in Africa, to legalize marriages between same-sex couples.
2008. Immigrants flee xenophobic violence – Immigrants, mainly from Zimbabwe, are attacked amid social problems, such as unemployment, crime and a lack of housing.