Constitutions in transition
Constitutions in transition

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Constitutions in transition

2.3 The Interim Constitution

South Africa faced difficult political and social questions when entering the process of developing a new constitution. With this in mind, let us now focus our attention on the role of the Interim Constitution in the process instigated by de Klerk.

A break from the past

The Interim Constitution enfranchised, and bestowed full citizenship on, South Africans who had previously been refused such status. It also enshrined a bill of rights, much of which was reflected in the finalised version of the Constitution.

The Interim Constitution also ensured that the parameters of South African Parliament were defined, along with its duration. For the avoidance of doubt, section 37 of the Interim Constitution made clear that Parliament ‘shall have the power to make laws for the Republic in accordance with this Constitution’. This terminology ensured that the authority of the South African Parliament to make decisions and create the laws of South Africa, was both recognised and limited by this document.

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