|Republic of Venda
Riphabuliki ya Venḓa
Republiek van Venda
(nominal parliamentary democracy)
"Shumela Venḓa" (Venda)
"Always Aspire for Venda"
Pfano na vhuthihi (Venda)a
Peace and Togetherness
Location of Venda in Southern Africa.
|Head of State|
|-||Jan–Apr 1994||Tshamano G. Ramabulana|
|-||Nominal independence||13 September 1979|
|-||Dissolution||27 April 1994|
|Currency||South African rand|
|a.||Anthem of Venda at nationalanthems.info.|
Venda was a bantustan in northern South Africa, bordering Zimbabwe and is now part of Limpopo province. It was founded as a homeland by the Apartheid Regime for the Venda people, speakers of the Venda language.
It was declared self-governing on 1 February 1973, with elections held later in the year. Further elections were held in July 1978. The territory was declared independent by the South African government on 13 September 1979 and its residents lost their South African citizenship. In common with other bantustans, its independence was not recognized by the international community. Being nominally independent it was possible to set up a casino which was done in the early 1980s, staffed in the main by British workers. It was initially a series of non-contiguous territories in the Transvaal, with one main part and one main exclave. Its capital, formerly at Sibasa, was moved to Thohoyandou (which included the old Sibasa administrative district) when Venda was declared independent in 1979. Prior to independence it was expanded to form one contiguous territory, with a total land area of 6,807 km². In the 1984 elections the ruling Venda Independence People's Party lost to the Venda National Party.
At independence in 1973, the population of Venda stood at 200 000 people. In 1996 the figure moved to 600 000, the 2001 statistics put Venda speakers at 800 000. The 2011 Statistics revealed that the Venda speakers have jumped to 3.5 million people. The state was cut off from neighboring Zimbabwe by the Madimbo corridor, patrolled by South African troops, to the north, and from nearby Mozambique by the Kruger National Park.
The first President of Venda, Patrick Mphephu, was also a chief of the Venda people; he was born and lived in Dzanani. His successor, Frank Ravele, was overthrown in a military coup in 1990, after which the territory was ruled by the Council of National Unity. Venda was re-absorbed into South Africa on 27 April 1994.
See also 
- Heads of State of Venda
- Venda people (Vhavenda), the ethnic group who live mostly in the Limpopo province in South Africa.
Notes and references 
- Lahiff, Edward, An Apartheid Oasis?: Agriculture and Rural Livelihoods in Venda. Routledge, 2000, p.55. ISBN 0-7146-5137-0.
- Worldstatesman.com has a chronology of Venda's transition to nominal independence and reintegration into South Africa.
- Elections in South Africa's Apartheid-Era Homelands "Bantustans" African Elections Database
- The Birth of a New Non-State, in Time Magazine, 24 September 1979
- "S. Africa Launches 'Independent Black State' of Venda," in The Washington Post, 13 September 1979.
- University of Venda website, retrieved 28 June 2007.