President of the Senate of South Africa

The President of the Senate presided over the Senate of South Africa, the upper house of the Parliament of South Africa. The President was chosen from among the Senators at its first sitting following a general election and whenever the office was vacant. The President acted as a "referee", taking charge of debates to make sure that the Senators could participate freely while keeping to the rules. The President also had managerial duties to ensure that Senate runs smoothly. Each political party in the Senate elected a chief whip to run its affairs. The presiding officers, the chief whips, and the Leader of Government Business (the person appointed by the Cabinet to liaise with Parliament) together decided on the programme of work.

President of the Senate of South Africa
Incumbent
None
Senate of South Africa
StyleHonorable President
TypePresiding officer of one chamber in a bicameral legislature
ResidenceCape Town
AppointerElected by members of the Senate
Formation1 November 1910
First holderFrancis William Reitz
Final holderKobie Coetsee
Abolished4 February 1997

The Senate was abolished for the first time in 1980, with effect from 1 January 1981, during a process of constitutional reform. The Senate was briefly reestablished under the 1993 interim constitution. The Senate was abolished for the second and final time under the 1997 constitution. The office of President of the Senate was succeeded by the office of Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces.

List of Presidents (1910–1980 and 1994–1997)Edit

No. Name
(Birth–Death)
Portrait Took office Left office Political party
Presidents of the First Senate (1910–1980)
1 Francis William Reitz
(1844–1934)
  1 November 1910 10 March 1921 South African Party
2 H. C. van Heerden
(1862–1933)
  11 March 1921 30 June 1929 South African Party
3 R. A. Kerr   19 July 1929 16 January 1930 National Party
Christiaan Andries van Niekerk
(1874–1966)
  17 January 1930 18 January 1940 National Party
(until 1934)
United Party
(from 1934)
4
5 François Stephanus Malan
(1871–1941)
  19 January 1940 31 December 1941
(Died in office)
United Party
6 Philippus Arnoldus Myburgh
(1880–1946)
  12 January 1942 31 December 1945 United Party
7 Pieter Jurie Wessels
(1878–1958)
  18 January 1946 5 August 1948 United Party
(4) Christiaan Andries van Niekerk
(1874–1966)
  6 August 1948 19 January 1961 National Party
8 Jozua François Naudé
(1889–1969)
  20 January 1961 31 May 1969
(Died in office)
National Party
9 Johannes de Klerk
(1903–1979)
  6 June 1969 January 1976 National Party
10 Marais Viljoen
(1915–2007)
  23 January 1976 18 June 1979 National Party
11 Jimmy Kruger
(1917–1987)
  19 June 1979 31 December 1980 National Party
Post abolished (1 January 1981 – 20 May 1994)
President of the Second Senate (1994–1997)
12 Kobie Coetsee
(1931–2000)
  20 May 1994 4 February 1997 National Party

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  • Keesing's Contemporary Archives (various volumes)
  • The South African Constitution, by H.J. May (3rd edition 1955, Juta & Co)


External linksEdit