A glance at the history of South Africa's African National Congress:
_1912: Founding of South African Native National Congress, precursor to the ANC.
_1923: Name changed to African National Congress.
_1955: The Congress Alliance _ of the ANC and Indian, mixed-race and white organizations _ holds the Congress of the People in Soweto. Congress adopts the Freedom Charter calling for a nonracial democracy and a socialist-based economy.
_1956: Nelson Mandela and 155 other South Africans of all races who had supported the Freedom Charter charged with treason. All acquitted after a four-year trial.
_1959: Robert Sobukwe leads breakaway faction from the ANC, forming Pan Africanist Congress, now a minor political player in South Africa.
_1960: ANC banned.
_1961: Founding of ANC's guerrilla wing, Umkhonto we Sizwe, or Spear of the Nation.
_1964: Mandela found guilty of sabotage at Rivonia Trial and sentenced to life imprisonment.
_1990: ANC and other groups unbanned; Mandela released.
_1991: Mandela elected president of ANC. The government, ANC and 17 other political groups begin formal negotiations on a new constitution.
_1993: Draft constitution adopted.
_1994: ANC wins first all-race elections; Mandela becomes president; ANC's armed wing absorbed into national defense forces.
_1999: Thabo Mbeki succeeds Mandela as the country's president.
_2007: ANC elects Jacob Zuma as party president over Mbeki, putting Zuma in line to run for the presidency.
_2009: ANC sweeps parliamentary elections and Zuma becomes president.
_2011: ANC fires Youth League leader Julius Malema and suspends him from the party for five years.
_2012: ANC marks its 100th anniversary.