government heading

Country name

Republic of South Africa

Government type

Republic

Capital

Name: Pretoria (administrative capital)
Note: Cape Town (legislative capital); Bloemfontein (judicial capital)

Administrative divisions

9 provinces

  • Eastern Cape
  • Free State
  • Gauteng
  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Limpopo
  • Mpumalanga
  • Northern Cape
  • North-West
  • Western Cape

 

Independence

  • 31 May 1910 (Union of South Africa formed from four British colonies: Cape Colony, Natal, Transvaal, and Orange Free State)
  • 31 May 1961 (republic declared) 27 April 1994 (majority rule)

 

National holiday

Freedom Day, 27 April (1994)

Constitution

10 December 1996; note - certified by the Constitutional Court on 4 December 1996; was signed by then President MANDELA on 10 December 1996; and entered into effect on 4 February 1997

Legal system

Based on Roman-Dutch law and English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal