Talk:Government of South Africa

Active discussions

False informationEdit

The passage on the Legislature contains false information. South Africa's parliament is NOT elected in single member constituencies at all. The country uses a PR system with regional multi member constituencies (MMCs) and one national MMC. Parties put up closed lists for either both parts of the system or for the regional MMCs only. The voter has one vote only for the National Assembly. Elections take place every five years.

I changed it correspondingly.

Provincial LegislaturesEdit

Does anyone have any information on the powers of the provincial legislatures? What are their areas of competence? Do they have a right to make legislation that the central government cannot override? Joziboy 19 May 2006, 19:25 (UTC)

Rephrase Recruitment PolicyEdit

South African Correctional Services need to rephrase their recruitment policy, by so doing; the department will gain more qualified staff. Their requirements should at least say “grade 12 but Correctional Services degree will be an advantage, because they are people who have specialised in this field rather than grade 12.

Type of governmentEdit

I'm not sure the current language is a good description of the system of goverment in South Africa. The passage I'm questioning, from the lied, says, "operating under a Westminster-styled parliamentary system." I think this is problematic, at best.

South Africa and Botswana present a special case, since their system of government is unusual. I don't believe, then, that claiming South Africa uses the Westminster system is accurate. The WS does not, for example, envision vesting the powers of head of state and head of government in a single individual. In a Westminster-style government, the head of government does not have a fixed term of office.

More broadly, I'm not sure that calling South Africa a parliamentary system is accurate, either, for similar reasons. I am not clear as to whether the South African president continues to act as an MP, but if he does not, and is not chief legislator, then his position is very much that of a president in a presidential system, albeit one with an extremely limited electorate (the members of parliament). It's worth noting that the Wikipedia page on the Parliamentary system features a map, the caption of which reads, in part: "Presidential republics with an executive presidency linked to a parliament are denoted in green." Surely this is closer to the mark: unlike presidents in parliamentary republics, the President of South Africa is truly the chief executive, with some legislative power delegated to him. Although he must be an MP to attain the office, he acts as a president, not subject to a binding no-confidence vote.

I could be incorrect here. I just think that some authoritative source should be found if the label parliamentary system is to be used, and the "Westminister-style" language should be dropped. I'd propose the following instead:

"The Republic of South Africa is a constitutional democracy with a three-tier system of government and an independent judiciary, operating in a nearly unique system that combines aspects of parliamentary and presidential systems. Legislative authority is held by the Parliament of South Africa. Executive authority is vested in the President of South Africa, who is head of state and head of government, and his Cabinet. The president is elected from the Parliament to serve a fixed term."

This language is a bit wordier, I know, but it is similar to the language found in other articles, such as Government of Italy, and provides a quick explanation. It doesn't imprint a specific label on the South African/Botswanan model, but does describe its traits more accurately than implying that it is pure parliamentarianism. Sacxpert (talk) 06:09, 26 April 2009 (UTC)

I've just overturned most of this. SA absolutely does NOT have anything even slightly resembling a presidential system. In a presidential system, such as the United States, the President is directly and personally elected by the people - i.e. the presidential candidate is a specific named individual on the ballot. The President of the US is only answerable to Congress for only a few limited aspects of his job - in practice the only "control" Congress has over the president is to not give him money. In SA the parliament directly elects and "owns" the president, they can get rid of him at any time. In a parliamentary system the HOG is a Member of Parliament and is elected by the Parliament. In SA the people do not vote for named individuals at all in national elections - the ballots only specify parties. The fact that SA does not have a ceremonial HOS separate from the executive HOG is a fairly trivial detail, it does not by itself overthrow the notion that SA has a parliamentary system. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 07:31, 29 May 2013 (UTC)

Important noticeEdit

The government section of the "Outline of South Africa" needs to be checked, corrected, and completed -- especially the subsections for the government branches.

When the country outlines were created, temporary data (that matched most of the countries but not all) was used to speed up the process. Those countries for which the temporary data does not match must be replaced with the correct information.

Please check that this country's outline is not in error.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact The Transhumanist .

Thank you.

Why does South Africa have 3 Capital cities?Edit

Lots of information is given about how the South African government is set up but no reason is given for why South Africa has 3 separate capital cities, rather than just one with the different branches of government functioning within that one city. Why does South Africa have 3 separate capital cities? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:53, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

It was a political decision at the time of the formation of the Union of South Africa. The Transvaal, Free State and Cape Colony each wanted their capital to the the capital of the new Union. In the end it was decided to give them each a specific capital function. See: [1]. I don't think this situation is unique to South Africa, but can't offhand think of another country were this is the case. --NJR_ZA (talk) 07:26, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

4 cabinet departments and what each is responsible. basic education

  • higher education and training
  • science and tecnology
  • sports and recreation
  • arts and culture


  • economic development
  • national planning commision
  • performance monitoring,evaluation


  • social development
  • women, youth, children and people with disabilities

justice and constitutional

  • correctional services
  • state security
  • police
  • defence and military veterans-- (talk) 11:23, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
File:4 cabinet departments
what each one is responsible for

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