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The ''Volksraad'' (English: "People's Council") was the
parliament In modern politics and history, a parliament is a legislative A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of ...

parliament
of the former
South African Republic The South African Republic ( nl, Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek; the ZAR; also known as the Transvaal Republic, af, Suid-Afrikaanse Republiek) was an independent republic A republic () is a form of government A government is t ...
(ZAR), it existed from 1840 to 1877, and from 1881 to 1902 in part of what is now
South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. With over 60 million people, it is the world's 23rd-most populous nation and covers an area of . South Africa has three capital citie ...

South Africa
. The body ceased to exist after the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
's victory in the
Second Anglo-Boer War The Second Boer War ( af, Tweede Vryheidsoorlog, lit. "Second Freedom War", 11 October 189931 May 1902), also known as the Boer War, the Anglo–Boer War, or the South African War, was a conflict fought between the British Empire The B ...
. The ''Volksraad'' sat in session in
Ou Raadsaal The Ou Raadsaal (English: ''Old Council Hall'') is a historic building in Pretoria, South Africa, located on the south side of Church Square, Pretoria, Church Square. The Ou Raadsaal housed the Volksraad, the parliament of the South African Repub ...
in
Church Square, Pretoria Church Square (Afrikaans: Kerkplein), originally Market Square (Dutch language, Dutch: Marktplein), is the square at the historic centre of the city of Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa. The founder of Pretoria, Marthinus Wessel Pretorius, Marthinu ...
. In 1840, at the beginning of the
Natalia Republic The Natalia Republic was a short-lived Boer republic 500px, Boer Republics and Griqua people, Griqua states in Southern Africa, 19th century The Boer Republics (sometimes also referred to as Boer states) were independent, self-governing repub ...
, an adjunct ''Volksraad'' was created in
Potchefstroom Potchefstroom (, colloquially Potch) is an academic city An academy (Attic Greek: Ἀκαδήμεια; Koine Greek Ἀκαδημία) is an institution of secondary education, secondary or tertiary education, tertiary higher education, high ...
for settlers west of the
Drakensberg The Drakensberg (Afrikaans Alaric speaking Afrikaans. Afrikaans (, ) is a West Germanic language spoken in South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. With over ...

Drakensberg
. The Potchefstroom ''Volksraad'' continued despite the British annexation of the Natalia Republic in 1843; eventually passing the Thirty-three Articles, the precursor the 1858 constitution(''Grondwet''), in 1849. In 1858 the constitution(''Grondwet'') permanently established the ''Volkraad'' as the supreme authority of the nation. Initially a
unicameral In government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by ...
body, the ''Volksraad'' was divided into two chambers in 1890 in order to keep Boer control over state matters while still giving ''Uitlanders'' (foreigners) — many of whom were temporarily employed in the mining industry — a say in local affairs, in order to fend off British complaints.''The Afrikaners: Biography of a People''
Hermann Giliomee, C. Hurst & Co. Publishers, 2003, page 238
From 1890 the ''Volksraad'' consisted of two houses of 24 members each. The "Second ''Volksraad''" had suffrage for all white males above 16 years, and had limited legislative powers in the fields of mining, road construction, copyright and certain commercial affairs, all subject to ratification by the "First ''Volksraad''". This was the highest authority in charge of state policy, with preference being given to fully franchised Burgher (Boer republics), burghers for appointment to government posts. ''Volksraad'' was also the Afrikaans name for the House of Assembly of South Africa, House of Assembly, the principal or sole chamber of the Parliament of South Africa from 1910 to 1994.''World Legislatures''
John Paxton, Springer, 1974, page 112


References

{{National unicameral legislatures Volksraad, Afrikaans words and phrases Defunct unicameral legislatures Defunct organisations based in South Africa 1857 establishments in South Africa 1902 disestablishments in South Africa