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Politics of South Africa

An overview of South Africa’s system of politics and government, from the founding fathers to the current ruling and main opposition political parties.

South African Politics

  • Current President: Cyril Ramaphosa
  • Main opposition leader: Mmusi Maimane
  • Founding President: Nelson Mandela
  • Liberation party: African National Congress (ANC)
  • Ruling party: ANC
  • Main opposition party: Democratic Alliance (DA)
  • Other elected political parties: EFF, IFP, NFP, UDM, FF+, COPE, ACDP, AIC, Agang SA, PAC and APC.

South African Executive branch of government

  • Head of State & Government: President indirectly elected by parliament
  • Executive body: Cabinet
  • Election cycle: 5 years
  • Regional leaders: Premiers

South African legislative branch of government

  • Type of legislature: Bicameral
  • Upper House: National Council of Provinces (NCOP): 90 (10 indirectly elected via proportional representation from each of the 9 provinces)
  • Lower House: National Assembly: 400 indirectly elected via proportional representation (200 from national lists and 200 from provincial lists)
  • Election cycle: 5 years

South African judiciary

  • Highest court: Constitutional Court
  • Court of appeal: Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA)
  • Head of the judiciary: Mogoeng Mogoeng
  • Head of the prosecuting authority: Shamila Batohi

South African Country profile

  • Independence: 27 April 1994
  • Area: 1,221,037 km2(471,445 sq mi)
  • Population:57 725 600 (2018 estimate)
  • Other: Currency: Randa (ZAR), Time Zone: UCT+2, Driving side: Left, Calling code: +27, TLD: .za
  • Administrative divisions: 9 provinces
  • Capital & largest city: Johannesburg
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