South Africa Republic Day

South Africa Republic Day

May 31
A referendum held in South Africa on October 6, 1960, narrowly approved the formation of the Republic of South Africa, although "colored" voters were excluded as part of the country's long-standing policy of racial segregation known as apartheid. The closeness of the vote—52.14 percent in favor, 47.42 percent opposed—reflected the mixed feelings of both the Afrikaners and the British settlers, although the former generally supported the idea.
The Union of South Africa became the Republic of South Africa on May 31, 1961, thus severing its long-standing ties to the old British Empire.
Also on this date in 1902 the Boer War ended. The Treaty of Vereeniging was signed by representatives of the South African Republic and the Orange Free State who had been waging war with Great Britain since October 12, 1899. Eight years later, the Union of South Africa was inaugurated, uniting the Cape of Good Hope, Natal, the Transvaal, and the Orange Free State.
CONTACTS:
South African History Online
8th Fl., Charter House, 179 Bosman St.
P.O. Box 29204
Sunnyside, Pretoria Central 0001 South Africa
27-12-323-5522; fax: 27-12-326-2037
www.sahistory.org.za
SOURCES:
AnnivHol-2000, p. 90
DictDays-1988, pp. 95, 124
NatlHolWrld-1968, p. 72
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