- President of South Africa
The President of South Africa, in full, the President of the Republic of South Africa is the
head of stateand head of governmentunder South Africa's Constitution. From 1961 to 1994, the head of state was called the State President.
The President is elected by members of the National Assembly, the lower house of Parliament, usually being the leader of the largest party, which has been the
African National Congresssince the first non-racial elections were held on 27 April 1994. The first President to be elected under the new Constitution was Nelson Mandela, who was succeeded by Thabo Mbekiin 1999, followed by Kgalema Motlanthe in September 2008. In §5, section 88, the Constitution also limits the President's time in office to two terms. [cite web
title=Constitution, chapter 5: The President and National Executive, 88. Term of office of President] Presidents are elected after each parliamentary election, giving presidents a term of office of between five and ten years.
Under the interim Constitution (valid from 1994 to 1996), there was a Government of National Unity, in which an MP from the largest opposition party was entitled to a position as
Deputy President. Along with Mbeki, the last State President, F.W. De Klerk also served as Deputy President, in his capacity as the leader of the National Party which was the second-largest party in the new Parliament. But De Klerk later resigned and went into opposition with his party. A voluntary coalition government continues to exist under the new constitution (adopted in 1996), although there have been no appointments of opposition politicians to the post of deputy president.
Presidential powers and jurisdiction
*Head of the State and Government of the Republic of South Africa
*Leader of the Cabinet
*Appoints ministers and members to the Cabinet
*Awards and confers the National Orders of the State
*Commander-in-Chief of the
South African National Defence Force
*Appoints the Chief Justices of the State
*Must approve all bills, amendments and legislation
*May declare war or peace
The President is referred to as: "Your Excellency", "Mr/Madam President" or "The Honourable (name)".
The official seat of the President is the
Union Buildingsin Pretoria.
List of Presidents of South Africa (1961-present)
* [http://www.thepresidency.gov.za/ Office of the Presidency]
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