Deputy Minister of Interior Affairs, P.W. Botha, introduces the Republican Referendum Bill to Parliament

P.W.Botha.

Friday, 11 March 1960

On 11 March 1960, for the first time in the history of South Africa, the Republican Referendum Bill was introduced to Parliament by the Deputy Minister of Interior Affairs P.W. Botha. The Bill provided that when a referendum on a republic is held, voters would be asked to vote either "Yes" or "No" to the question; "Are you in favour of a republic?" This was all that would appear on the ballot paper in both official languages (English and Afrikaans). The Bill consisted of a series of amendments to the Electoral Act of 1946, with the idea of making the ordinary electoral machine available for a referendum. For that purpose, the Union and South - West Africa were to be regarded as one constituency.

References:
• Anon, (1960), 'One question Only for Vote on Republic,' from The Star, 11 March 1960, (Available at National Library of South Africa, Cape Town campus) pg 1.
• SAHO, Pieter Willem Botha, from South African History Online, [online], Available at www.sahistory.org.za [Accessed: 5 March 2013]

Last updated : 14-Mar-2017

This article was produced by South African History Online on 16-Mar-2011

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