See Fighter and Reformer: Extracts from the Speeches of P. W. Botha (1989); B. Pottinger, The Imperial Presidency: P. W. Botha, the First 10 Years (1988).
(born Jan. 12, 1916, Paul Roux, S.Af.—died Oct. 31, 2006, Wilderness, near George) Prime minister (1978–84) and first state president (1984–89) of South Africa. Elected to parliament as a National Party candidate in 1948, Botha served in several subsequent posts before replacing John Vorster as prime minister in 1978. His government faced serious difficulties, including the coming to power of black governments in Mozambique, Angola, and Zimbabwe, an insurgency in South West Africa (Namibia), and domestic unrest among black students and labour unions. Botha responded by backing antigovernment troops in the bordering states and suppressing rebellion at home. A target of criticism from within and outside his party, he fell ill and resigned in 1989.
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