Legislative power was vested, nominally, in the volksraad (consisting of twenty-four members),while the president and executive were changed every three months.
With or possession of the country by any other European power," Sir George communicated this decision to the volksraad in September 1841.
Smellekamp (a man who subsequently played a part in the early history of the Transvaal and Orange Free State), concluded a treaty with the volksraad assuring them of the protection of Holland.
Within a fortnight Colonel Cloete had received the submission of the volksraad at Pietermaritzburg.
Sir George then appointed Mr Henry Cloete (a brother of Colonel Cloete) a special commissioner to explain to the Natal volksraad the decision of the government.
Commandant Jan Mocke of Winburg (who had helped to besiege Captain Smith at Durban) and others of the " war party " attempted to induce the volksraad not to submit, and a plan was formed to murder Pretorius, Boshof and other leaders, who were now convinced that the only chance of ending the state of complete anarchy into which the country had fallen was by accepting British sovereignty.
On the 8th of August 1843 the Natal volksraad unanimously agreed to the terms proposed by Lord Stanley.
Although proclaimed a British colony in 1843, and in 1844 declared a part of Cape Colony, it was not until the end of 1845 that an effective administration was installed with Mr Martin West as lieutenant-governor, and the power of the volksraad finally came to an end.
When Pretorius conducted the negotiations which led to the signing of the Sand River Convention he did so without consulting the volksraad, and Potgieter's party accused him of usurping power and aiming at domination over the whole country.
However, the volksraad, at a meeting held at Rustenburg on the 16th of March 1852, ratified the convention, Potgieter and Pretorius having been publicly reconciled on the morning of the same day.
The name " South African Republic " was adopted as the title of the state, and the new constitution made provision for a volksraad to which members were to be elected by the people for a period of two years, and in which the legislative function was vested.
It was stipulated that members both of the volksraad and council should be members of the Dutch Reformed Church, and of European blood.
At the end of the six months Pretorius, after a stormy meeting of the volksraad, apparently in disgust at the whole situation, resigned the presidency of the Transvaal.
The immediate followers of Pretorius now became extremely incensed at the action of the Lydenburg party, and a mass meeting was held at Potchefstroom (October 1860), where it was resolved that: (a) the volksraad no longer enjoyed its confidence; (b) that Pretorius should remain president of the South African Republic, and have a year's leave of absence to bring about union with the Free State; (c) that Schoeman should act as president during the absence of Pretorius; (d) that before the return of Pretorius to resume his duties a new volksraad should be elected.
In 1865 an empty exchequer called for drastic measures, and the volksraad determined to endeavour to meet their liabilities and provide for further contingencies by the issue of notes.
He was empowered by the volksraad to raise £300,000, but with great difficulty he obtained in Holland the sum of £90,000 only, and that at a high rate of interest.
The acting-president had in his absence been granted leave by the volksraad to carry out various measures opposed to the public welfare; native lands had been indiscriminately allotted to adventurers, and a war with Sikukuni (Secocoeni), a native chief on the eastern borders of the country, was imminent.
His was a bitter awakening, and the bitterness of it found expression in some remarkable words addressed to the volksraad: " I would rather," said Burgers in March 1877, " be a policeman under a strong government than the president of such a state.
He had gone to Pretoria hoping that the Transvaal volksraad would accept Carnarvon's federation scheme; but the federation proposals were rejected by the raad.
The new volksraad had scarcely been returned and the Pretoria Convention ratified (Oct.
By treaty between the South African Republic (then comprising the districts of Potchefstroom, Rustenburg, Pretoria and Zoutpansberg) and the republic of Lydenburg, concluded at Pretoria in 1860, the two republics were united and Pretoria chosen as the capital of the whole state, and in September of that year the Volksraad held its first meeting in the new capital.
After the defeat of Mosilikatze the town of Winburg (so named by the Boers in commemoration of their victory) was founded, a volksraad elected, and Piet Retief, one of the ablest of the voortrckkers, chosen " governor and commandant-general."
The volksraad at Winburg during this period continued to claim jurisdiction over the Boers living between the Orange and the Vaal and was in federation with the volksraad at Potchefstroom, which made a similar claim upon the Great Boers living north of the Vaal.
The difficulties of the state were at that time (1858) so great that the volksraad in December of that year passed a resolution in favour of confederation with the Cape Colony.
When the British annexation took place a party in the volksraad wished to go to war with Britain, but the wiser counsels of President Brand prevailed.
In 1895 the volksraad passed a resolution, in which they declared their readiness to entertain a proposition from the Transvaal in favour of some form of federal union.
A republic. The one prominent member of the volksraad who, inherited the traditions and enlightened views of President Brand was Mr (Afterwards Sir) John G.
The result of this conference was a secret session of the Transvaal volksraad and the proposition of a secret treaty with the Free State, by which each state should bind itself not to build railways to its frontier without the consent of the other, the eastern and northern frontiers of the Transvaal being excepted.
A resolution was passed by the volksraad on the 27th of September" declaring that the state would observe its obligations to the Transvaal whatever might happen.
He became vice-president of the volksraad in 1893 and a member of the executive council of the state in 1896.
Subsequently he settled in the Vryheid district, which he represented in the Volksraad of 1897.
Before the election was decided Kruger took care to conciliate the volksraad members, as well as to see that at all the volksraad elections, which occurred shortly before the presidential election, his supporters were returned, or, if not returned, that his opponents were objected to on some trivial pretext, and by this means prevented from actually sitting in the volksraad until the presidential election was over.
From the time of its establishment it was the seat of the Volksraad of the Natal Boers, and on the submission of the Boers to the British in 1842 Maritzburg (as it is usually called) became the capital of the country.
He held that the federation of that state with Cape Colony was preferable to its union or federation with the Transvaal, and it was with considerable satisfaction that he learned that on the 7th of December of the same year (1858) the Volksraad of the Free State had passed a resolution in favour of " a union or alliance with the Cape Colony " and sought to ascertain the views of the Cape legislature on the subject.
During the interval between Shepstone's arrival in the country and the annexation the Volksraad had rejected the proposals for confederation laid before them in accordance with Lord Carnarvon's permissive bill, and had made no real attempt at reform.
A new franchise law, on a seven years' naturalization basis, was passed in July by the Transvaal volksraad, but the law was hedged about with many restrictions.
It was at Rustenburg that the volksraad met in March 1852 to ratify the Sand River Convention granting independence to the Transvaal Boers.