Republic of South Africa

Republiek van Suid-Afrika

Political Status: Fully independent state since 1934; republican regime established May 31, 1961; Interim Constitution ratified on December 22, 1993, with effect from April 27, 1994, for a five-year term; new text signed into law on December 10, 1996, effective February 4, 1997, with certain provisions implemented gradually through 1999.

Area: 470,882 sq. mi. (1,221,037 sq. km.).

Population: 44,819,770 (2001C); 48,313,000 (2008E).

Major Urban Centers (urban areas, 2005E): PRETORIA (administrative capital, 2,534,000), Cape Town (legislative capital, 3,143,000), Bloemfontein (judicial capital, 793,000), Durban (4,610,000), Johannesburg (3,974,000). Pretoria is part of the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality.

Official Languages: There are 11 official languages, of which English and Afrikaans are the languages of record.

Monetary Unit: Rand (principal rate December 1, 2009: 7.33 rand = $1US).

President: Jacob ...

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