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South Africa: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: Republic of South Africa
conventional short form: South Africa
former: Union of South Africa
abbreviation: RSA
CapitalPretoria (administrative capital); Cape Town (legislative capital); Bloemfontein (judicial capital) Pretoria (administrative capital), Cape Town (legislative capital), ...
geographic coordinates: 25 42 S, 28 13 E
time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions9 provinces; Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape
Constitutionseveral previous; latest drafted 8 May 1996, approved 4 December 1997, effective 4 February 1997; amended many times, last in 2013 (2013)
Executive branchchief of state: President Jacob ZUMA (since 9 May 2009); Deputy President Matamela Cyril RAMAPHOSA (since 26 May 2014) note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Jacob ZUMA (since 9 May 2009); Deputy President Matamela Cyril RAMAPHOSA (since 26 May 2014)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president
elections: president elected by the National Assembly for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 21 May 2014 (next to be held on May 2019)
election results: Jacob ZUMA re-elected president unopposed; he was sworn in on 24 May 2014
Flag descriptiontwo equal width horizontal bands of red (top) and blue separated by a central green band that splits into a horizontal Y, the arms of which end at the corners of the hoist side; the Y embraces a black isosceles triangle from which the arms are separated by narrow yellow bands; the red and blue bands are separated from the green band and its arms by narrow white stripes; the flag colors do not have any official symbolism, but the Y stands for the "convergence of diverse elements within South African society, taking the road ahead in unity"; black, yellow, and green are found on the flag of the African National Congress, while red, white, and blue are the colors in the flags of the Netherlands and the UK, whose settlers ruled South Africa during the colonial era
note: the South African flag is one of only two national flags to display six colors as part of its primary design, the other is South Sudan's
Independence31 May 1910 (Union of South Africa formed from four British colonies: Cape Colony, Natal, Transvaal, and Orange Free State); 31 May 1961 (republic declared); 27 April 1994 (majority rule)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court of Appeals (consists of the court president, deputy president, and 21 judges); Constitutional Court (consists of the chief and deputy chief justices and 9 judges)
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court of Appeals president and vice-president appointed by the national president after consultation with the Joint Services Commission (JSC), a 22-member body of judicial and other government officials, and a law academics; other Supreme Court judges appointed by the national president on the advice of the JSC and hold office until discharged from active service in terms of an Act of Parliament; Constitutional Court chief and deputy chief justices appointed by the national president after consultation with the JSC and with heads of the National Assembly; other Constitutional Court judges appointed by the national president after consultation with the chief justice and leaders of the National Assembly; Constitutional Court judges appointed for 12-year non-renewable terms or until age 70
subordinate courts: High Courts; Magistrates' Courts; labor courts; land claims courts;
Legal systemmixed legal system of Roman-Dutch civil law, English common law, and customary law
Legislative branchbicameral Parliament consisting of the National Council of Provinces (90 seats; 10 members elected by each of the nine provincial legislatures for five-year terms; has special powers to protect regional interests, including the safeguarding of cultural and linguistic traditions among ethnic minorities) and the National Assembly (400 seats; members elected by popular vote under a system of proportional representation to serve five-year terms)
elections: National Assembly and National Council of Provinces - last held on 7 May 2014 (next to be held in May 2019)
election results: National Council of Provinces - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; National Assembly - percent of vote by party - ANC 62.2%, DA 22.2%, EFF 6.4%, IFP 2.4%, NFP 1.6%, other 5.2%; seats by party - ANC 249, DA 89, EFF 25, IFP 10, NFP 6, other 21
International organization participationACP, AfDB, AU, BIS, BRICS, C, CD, FAO, FATF, G-20, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MONUSCO, NAM, NSG, OECD (Enhanced Engagement, OPCW, Paris Club (associate), PCA, SACU, SADC, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNSC (temporary), UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
National holidayFreedom Day, 27 April (1994)
Political pressure groups and leadersCongress of South African Trade Unions or COSATU (Zwelinzima VAVI, general secretary)
South African Communist Party or SACP (Blade NZIMANDE, general secretary)
South African National Civics Organization or SANCO (Richard MDAKANE, national president)
note: COSATU and SACP are in a formal alliance with the ANC
Political parties and leadersAfrican Christian Democratic Party or ACDP (Kenneth MESHOE)
African National Congress or ANC (Jacob ZUMA)
Congress of the People or COPE (Mosiuoa LEKOTA)
Democratic Alliance or DA (Helen ZILLE)
Economic Freedom Fighters or EFF (Julius MALEMA)
Freedom Front Plus or FF+ (Pieter MULDER)
Inkatha Freedom Party or IFP (Mangosuthu BUTHELEZI)
National Freedom Party or NFP (Zanele kaMAGWAZA-MSIBI)
Pan-Africanist Congress of Azania or PAC (Alton MPHETHI)
United Christian Democratic Party or UCDP (Isaac Sipho MFUNDISI)
United Democratic Movement or UDM (Bantu HOLOMISA)
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Government typerepublic
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Ebrahim RASOOL (since 4 August 2010)
chancery: 3051 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: (1) (202) 232-4400
FAX: (1) (202) 265-1607
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York
National anthemname: "National Anthem of South Africa"
lyrics/music: Enoch SONTONGA and Cornelius Jacob LANGENHOVEN/Enoch SONTONGA and Marthinus LOURENS de Villiers
note: adopted 1994; the anthem is a combination of "N'kosi Sikelel' iAfrica" (God Bless Africa) and "Die Stem van Suid Afrika" (The Call of South Africa), which were respectively the anthems of the non-white and white communities under apartheid; the official lyrics contain a mixture of Xhosa, Zulu, Sesotho, Afrikaans, and English (i.e., the five most widely spoken of South Africa's 11 official languages); the music incorporates the melody used in the Tanzanian and Zambian anthems
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)springbok antelope
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Patrick GASPARD (since 1 August 2013)
embassy: 877 Pretorius Street, Arcadia, Pretoria
mailing address: P. O. Box 9536, Pretoria 0001
telephone: (27) (12) 431-4000
FAX: (27) (12) 342-2299
consulate(s) general: Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg