Dawie de Villiers

David Jacobus de Villiers, born on 10 July 1940 in Burgersdorp,[1] Cape Province, was an ordained Minister in the Dutch Reformed Church; a South African Government minister and a former Springbok rugby captain.

Dawie de Villiers
Birth nameDawid Jacobus de Villiers
Date of birth (1940-07-10) 10 July 1940 (age 80)
Place of birthBurgersdorp, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Height1.71 m (5 ft 7 in)
Weight73 kg (161 lb)
SchoolHoërskool Bellville, Bellville, Western Cape
UniversityStellenbosch University
Rugby union career
Position(s) Scrumhalf
Provincial / State sides
Years Team Apps (Points)
1961–1966 Western Province ()
1967–1970 Boland ()
1970 Transvaal ()
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
1962–1970 South Africa 25 (9)
Member of Parliament
In office
ConstituencyJohannesburg West
South African Ambassador to the United Kingdom
In office
Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism
In office
Preceded byAndries Treurnicht
Succeeded byKent Durr
Minister of Mineral and Energy Affairs
In office
Preceded byDaniel Steyn
Succeeded byGeorge Bartlett
Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism
In office
Succeeded byPallo Jordan


His father Coenie was a railway clerk and organizer of the National Party and Member of Parliament for the Vasco constituency from 1953 to 1961. The family moved to Caledon where he began his schooling. However, they moved again a year later to Bellville, where he matriculated in 1959 at the Hoërskool Bellville.[1]

In 1960 he studied at the University of Stellenbosch where he obtained a degree in Theology and gained honors in Philosophy. During 1962 to 1963 he was President of the Student Council.

In 1963-1964 he was a part-time lecturer in philosophy at the University of the Western Cape and was awarded the Abe Bailey and Markotter scholarships. He was the Pastor of the Wellington congregation of the Dutch Reformed Church from 1967 to 1969. After that, he became a lecturer at the Rand Afrikaans University (RAU). In 1972 he completed his MA in philosophy and received a scholarship to study abroad.

Springbok rugbyEdit

De Villiers also excelled in rugby (scrumhalf position) and became involved in all levels of the sport, including representing South Africa in 25 test matches,[2] His first international test match was in 1962 against the British Lions, aged 22. In 1970 he captained the Springboks against New Zealand.[3]

Test historyEdit

No. Opponents Results
(SA 1st)
Position Tries Dates Venue
1. British Lions 3–0 Scrumhalf 21 Jul 1962 Kings Park, Durban
2. British Lions 8–3 Scrumhalf 04 Aug 1962 Newlands, Cape Town
3. Ireland 6–9 Scrumhalf 10 Apr 1965 Lansdowne Road, Dublin
4. New Zealand 3–6 Scrumhalf (c) 31 Jul 1965 Athletic Park, Wellington
5. New Zealand 19–16 Scrumhalf (c) 4 Sep 1965 Lancaster Park, Christchurch
6. New Zealand 3–20 Scrumhalf (c) 18 Sep 1965 Eden Park, Auckland
7. France 26–3 Scrumhalf (c) 15 Jul 1967 Kings Park, Durban
8. France 16–3 Scrumhalf (c) 22 Jul 1967 Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
9. France 14–19 Scrumhalf (c) 29 Jul 1967 Ellis Park, Johannesburg
10. France 6–6 Scrumhalf (c) 12 Aug 1967 Newlands, Cape Town
11. British Lions 25–20 Scrumhalf (c) 1 8 Jun 1968 Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
12. British Lions 6–6 Scrumhalf (c) 22 Jun 1968 Boet Erasmus, Port Elizabeth
13. British Lions 11–6 Scrumhalf (c) 13 Jul 1968 Newlands, Cape Town
14. British Lions 19–6 Scrumhalf (c) 27 Jul 1968 Ellis Park, Johannesburg
15. France 12–9 Scrumhalf (c) 9 Nov 1968 Stade Chaban-Delmas, Bordeaux
16. France 16–11 Scrumhalf (c) 1 16 Nov 1968 Stade Olympique, Colombes
17. Australia 30–11 Scrumhalf (c) 2 Aug 1969 Ellis Park, Johannesburg
18. Australia 19–8 Scrumhalf (c) 20 Sep 1969 Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
19. England 8–11 Scrumhalf (c) 20 Dec 1969 Twickenham, London
20. Ireland 8–8 Scrumhalf (c) 10 Jan 1970 Lansdowne Road, Dublin
21. Wales 6–6 Scrumhalf (c) 24 Jan 1970 National Stadium, Cardiff
22. New Zealand 17–6 Scrumhalf (c) 1 25 Jul 1970 Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
23. New Zealand 8–9 Scrumhalf (c) 8 Aug 1970 Newlands, Cape Town
24. New Zealand 14–3 Scrumhalf (c) 29 Aug 1970 Boet Erasmus Stadium, Port Elizabeth
25. New Zealand 20–17 Scrumhalf (c) 12 Sep 1970 Ellis Park, Johannesburg


While he was lecturing at RAU, the then rector, Gerrit Viljoen, persuaded him at this time to become active in politics. Against his father’s wishes, De Villiers entered politics and stood for election. He was elected to the House of Assembly as MP for Johannesburg West and was re-elected in the elections of 1974 and 1977.

In April 1979, De Villiers was appointed South African Ambassador in London. On his return in October 1980 he became Minister of Trade and Industry. The following year he contested the Gardens constituency in Cape Town, but lost to Ken Andrews of the Progressive Federal Party. He was subsequently elected MP for Piketberg, Cape Province.

While he was the Minister of Trade and Industry, the Liquor Act was passed which desegregated South African bars at the owners’ discretion and the South African Tourist Board was established. In 1983 he called a commission to investigate monopolies, and he stimulated small business in rural and ‘homeland’ areas. In 1989 he became Minister of Mineral and Energy Affairs, and of Public Enterprises as well as Cape NP leader.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Dawie de Villiers - SA History". Retrieved January 28, 2013.
  2. ^ "ESPN Scrum". Retrieved January 28, 2013.
  3. ^ Jooste, Graham K. (1995). South African rugby test players 1949-1995. Johannesburg: Penguin. pp. 40–78. ISBN 0140250174. OCLC 36916860.


Sporting positions
Preceded by
Nelie Smith
Springbok Captain
Succeeded by
Tommy Bedford
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
South African Ambassador to the United Kingdom
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by
Andries Treurnicht
as Minister of Tourism
Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism
Succeeded by
Kent Durr
as Minister of Tourism
Preceded by
Daniel Steyn
Minister of Mineral and Energy Affairs
Succeeded by
George Bartlett
Preceded by
Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism
Succeeded by
Pallo Jordan