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He was the son of general J. B. M. Hertzog, a founder of the National Party and prime minister of the Union of South Africa. He was educated at Grey College, in Bloemfontein, his town of birth, and studied at the University of Stellenbosch, Oxford University, the University of Leiden and the University of Amsterdam. He was elected to parliament in the election of 1948, when the National Party defeated the United Party, and in 1958 was appointed as the minister of post of telecommunications, and later minister of health.
Split from the National Party
During the mandate debut of prime minister of John Vorster, the party was torn between the verkramptes, wanting to enforce strict segregation in all areas, and the verligtes who favoured minor reforms, in particular permitting Maori players and spectators in the 1970 All Black rugby tour of the South Africa, and the admission of a black diplomat from Malawi.
Four verkrampte members of parliament split from National Party and formed the Herstigte Nasionale Party in on 24 and 25 October 1969, with Hertzog elected as the first leader.
The party won 3.6% of the vote in the 1970 general election, but no seats, while the splitting of the vote allowed the United Party to increase its share of the vote for the first time since 1948, increasing from 39 to 47 seats, with the National Party dropping from 126 to 117 seats.
The party never won a seat under Hertzog's leadership.
- Rosenthal, Eric. 1978. Encyclopaedia of Southern Africa. Cape Town, Wetton, Johannesburg: Juta and Company Limited.