About this site

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

Coetsee, Hendrick Jacobus (Kobie)

Click here for list of interviews

Coetsee was born in Ladybrand, orange Free State, on 19th April 1931.

He completed his BA and LLB at the University of OFS in 1954, during which time he served as chairman of the youth branch of the National Party (NP). He was admitted to tbe Bar as an advocate in Bloemfontein in 1972.

Coetsee became MP for Bloemfontein West in 1968 and took over leadership of the party in the OFS in 1985.

As an MP he served on the Schlebusch Commission of Inquiry (1974-76), the Commission for Co-operation and Development (1Q976-78), AND THE select Committee on the Constitution (1983). He was elected chairman of the Defence Group of the NP caucus in 1978.

He was appointed Deputy Minister of Defence and National Security in October 1978. He became Minister of Justice in 1980.

Coetsee formed part of the government delegation in the Groote Schuur talks with the ANC in 1990 and he became a key figure in the government's negotiation team at CODESA.

From April 1993 until April 1994 Coetsee served as Minister of Justice and of Defence. After the elections in April 1994 be was elected president of the Senate.

He died in 2000.

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.