President of the Senate of South Africa

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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.

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–present)

Presidents of the Senate (1910–1980 and 1994–1997)

No. President
Term of Office Political Party
Presidents of the First Senate (1910–1980)
1 WFReitz CHM VA0957.jpg Francis William Reitz
1 November 1910 10 March 1921 South African Party
2 Coat of Arms of South Africa 1910-1930.png H. C. van Heerden
11 March 1921 30 June 1929 South African Party
3 Coat of Arms of South Africa 1910-1930.png R. A. Kerr 19 July 1929 16 January 1930 National Party
Coat of arms of South Africa (1932–2000).svg Christiaan Andries van Niekerk
17 January 1930 18 January 1940 National Party
(until 1934)
United Party
(from 1934)
5 François Stephanus Malan.jpg François Stephanus Malan
19 January 1940 31 December 1941
(Died in office)
United Party
6 Coat of arms of South Africa (1932–2000).svg Philippus Arnoldus Myburgh
12 January 1942 31 December 1945 United Party
7 Coat of arms of South Africa (1932–2000).svg Pieter Jurie Wessels
18 January 1946 5 August 1948 United Party
(4) Coat of arms of South Africa (1932–2000).svg Christiaan Andries van Niekerk
6 August 1948 19 January 1961 National Party
8 Tom Naudé 1962.jpg Tom Naudé
20 January 1961 31 May 1969
(Died in office)
National Party
9 Jan de Klerk.jpg Johannes de Klerk
6 June 1969 January 1976 National Party
10 Marais Viljoen.jpg Marais Viljoen
23 January 1976 18 June 1979 National Party
11 Coat of arms of South Africa (1932–2000).svg Jimmy Kruger
19 June 1979 31 December 1980 National Party
Post abolished (1 January 1981 – 20 May 1994)
President of the Second Senate (1994–1997)
12 Coat of arms of South Africa (1932–2000).svg Kobie Coetsee
20 May 1994 4 February 1997 National Party

Chairpersons of the National Council of Provinces (1997–present)

No. Chairperson
Term of Office Political Party
1 Mosiuoa Lekota, 000215-D-9880W-112 detail.jpg Mosiuoa Lekota
6 February 1997 21 June 1999 African National Congress
2 Naledi Pandor 2012.jpg Naledi Pandor
21 June 1999 4 May 2004 African National Congress
3 No image.png Joyce Kgoali
4 May 2004 21 November 2004
(Died in office)
African National Congress
4 Mninwa Johannes Mahlangu.jpg Mninwa Johannes Mahlangu
17 January 2005
Acting since
21 November 2004
22 May 2014 African National Congress
5 No image.png Thandi Modise
22 May 2014 Incumbent African National Congress

See also


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

External links

  • South African ministries, etc –
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