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Local government in South Africa consists of municipalities (Tswana : bommasepala; Sotho : bomasepala; Northern Sotho : bommasepala; Afrikaans : munisipaliteite; Zulu : ngomasipala; Southern Ndebele: bomasipala; Xhosa : ngoomasipala; Swazi : bomasipala; Venda : vhomasipala; Tsonga : vamasipala) of various types. The largest metropolitan areas are governed by metropolitan municipalities, while the rest of the country is divided into district municipalities, each of which consists of several local municipalities. Since the boundary reform at the time of the municipal election of 3 August 2016 there are eight metropolitan municipalities, 44 district municipalities and 205 local municipalities.
Municipalities can belong to one of three categories: metropolitan, district and local (referred to in the constitution as categories A, B and C).
Metropolitan (or category A) municipalities govern large densely urbanised regions that encompass multiple centers with close economic linkages, i.e. metropolises. Metropolitan municipalities are unitary authorities responsible for all local government functions within their areas.
Since the 2011 municipal election there are eight metropolitan municipalities:
Buffalo City and Mangaung were originally local municipalities (see below) which were separated from their district municipalities and upgraded to metropolitan status in 2011. The other six municipalities were founded as metropolitan municipalities at the inception of the current system of local government in 2000.
The rest of the country, outside the metropolitan areas, is governed jointly by district and local municipalities. Each district (or category C) municipality is divided into a number of local (category B) municipalities. District municipalities have responsibility for broader matters such as integrated planning, infrastructure development, bulk supply of water and electricity, and public transport; while local municipalities have responsibility for all municipal functions not assigned to the district, and in particular local service delivery. As of 2016 there are 44 district municipalities divided into 205 local municipalities.
Municipalities are governed by municipal councils which are elected every five years. The most recent nationwide election of municipal councils was held on 3 August 2016.
The councils of metropolitan and local municipalities are elected by a system of mixed-member proportional representation. These municipalities are divided into wards, and each ward directly elects one councillor by first-past-the-post voting. An equal number of councillors are appointed from party lists so that the overall makeup of the council is proportional to the votes received by each party.
In district municipalities, 60% of the councillors are appointed by the councils of their constituent local municipalities, while the remaining 40% are elected by party-list proportional representation.
The basic structure of local government originates from Chapter 7 of the Constitution of South Africa. In addition to this a number of acts of Parliament regulate the organisation of local government. The principal statutes are:
The South African Geographical Names Council is a statutory body that deals specifically with changing names of places in South Africa, including municipalities.
Witzenberg Municipality is a local municipality located within the Cape Winelands District Municipality, in the Western Cape province of South Africa. As of 2011 it had a population of 115,946.
The Cape Winelands District Municipality, formerly the Boland District Municipality, is a district municipality located in the Boland region of the Western Cape province of South Africa. As of 2011, it had a population of 787,490. The largest towns in the municipality are Paarl, Worcester, Stellenbosch and Wellington.
Cederberg Local Municipality is a local municipality which governs an area of the Western Cape province of South Africa stretching from the Cederberg mountains through the middle valley of the Olifants River to the Atlantic coast. It includes the towns of Clanwilliam, Citrusdal and Lamberts Bay, and the surrounding villages and farms. As of 2011 it had a population of 49,768. It is located within the West Coast District Municipality and has municipality code WC012.
The Republic of South Africa is a parliamentary republic with three-tier system of government and an independent judiciary, operating in a parliamentary system. Legislative authority is held by the Parliament of South Africa. Executive authority is vested in the President of South Africa who is head of state and head of government, and his Cabinet. The President is elected by the Parliament to serve a fixed term. South Africa's government differs greatly from those of other Commonwealth nations. The national, provincial and local levels of government all have legislative and executive authority in their own spheres, and are defined in the South African Constitution as "distinctive, interdependent and interrelated".
The Overberg District Municipality is a district municipality that governs the Overberg region in the Western Cape province of South Africa. It is divided into four local municipalities and includes the major towns of Grabouw, Caledon, Hermanus, Bredasdorp and Swellendam. The municipal area covers 12,241 square kilometres (4,726 sq mi) and had in 2007 an estimated population of 212,787 people in 60,056 households.
The City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality is a metropolitan municipality that manages the local governance of Johannesburg, South Africa. It is divided into several branches and departments in order to expedite services for the city.
In South Africa, a metropolitan municipality or Category A municipality is a municipality which executes all the functions of local government for a city or conurbation. This is by contrast to areas which are primarily rural, where the local government is divided into district municipalities and local municipalities.
The City of Cape Town is the metropolitan municipality which governs the city of Cape Town, South Africa and its suburbs and exurbs. As of the 2011 census, it had a population of 3,740,026.
Municipal elections were held in South Africa on 1 March 2006, to elect members to the local governing councils in the municipalities of South Africa. The municipalities form the local government of South Africa and are subdivisions of the provinces, thus making them responsible for local service delivery, such as electricity, water and fire services.
The nine provinces of South Africa are divided into 52 districts, which are either metropolitan or district municipalities. They are the second level of administrative division, below the provinces and above the local municipalities.
In South Africa, a local municipality or Category B municipality is a type of municipality that serves as the third, and most local, tier of local government. Each district municipality is divided into a number of local municipalities, and responsibility for municipal affairs is divided between the district and local municipalities. There are 205 local municipalities in South Africa.
Municipal elections were held in South Africa on 18 May 2011, electing new councils for all municipalities in the country. Municipal elections are held every five years, and the previous municipal elections were held in 2006. The first municipal elections following the reorganisation of municipalities took place in December 2000.
The primary administrative divisions of South Africa are the nine provinces. The provinces are divided into metropolitan and district municipalities, with the district municipalities being further divided into local municipalities. Metropolitan and local municipalities are divided into wards.
Bushbuckridge Local Municipality is a third-level administrative division in the Ehlanzeni District of Mpumalanga in South Africa. Commercial farming, which consists of pine /bluegum plantations, Tobacco, cotton, sub-tropical fruits and vegetables are farmed in the municipality's countryside. The municipality includes part of Kruger National Park. Bushbuckridge is the largest local municipality in Mpumalanga, both in terms of land and by population size.
Moqhaka is a municipality in the Fezile Dabi District, Free State Province, South Africa. In 2001 the population was 267 881 with a total area of 7925 km ². The seat of local government is Kroonstad. The community name is the South-Sotho-word for "crown".
Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality is a metropolitan municipality which governs Bloemfontein and surrounding towns in the Free State province of South Africa. Mangaung is a Sesotho name meaning "place of Cheetahs". Legend has it that when the first settlers arrived, they were stunned by the vast plains that were roamed freely by cheetahs.
Naledi Local Municipality was a local municipality in the Free State province in South Africa. On 3 August 2016 it was disestablished and merged into the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality. The name Naledi is a Sesotho word meaning "a star". The principal towns in the area of the disestablished municipality are Dewetsdorp and Wepener.
Local government in the Australian state of Victoria consist of 79 local government areas (LGAs). Also referred to as municipalities, Victorian LGAs are classified as cities (34), shires (38), rural cities (6) and boroughs (1). In general, an urban or suburban LGA is called a city and is governed by a City Council, while a rural LGA covering a larger rural area is usually called a shire and is governed by a Shire Council. Local councils have the same administrative functions and similar political structures, regardless of their classification. They will typically have an elected council and usually a mayor or shire president responsible for chairing meetings of the council. The City of Melbourne has a Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor, who are directly elected, and in the other councils a mayor and deputy mayor are elected by fellow Councillors from among their own number. Since 2017, the mayor of the City of Greater Geelong has not been directly elected. In addition, there are also 10 unincorporated areas, consisting of small islands or ski resorts, which are administered either by the state government or management boards.
The 2016 South African municipal elections were held on 3 August 2016, to elect councils for all district, metropolitan and local municipalities in each of the country's nine provinces. It was the fifth municipal election held in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994; municipal elections are held every five years.
The 2021 South African municipal elections will be held in 2021, to elect councils for all district, metropolitan and local municipalities in each of the country's nine provinces. It will be the sixth municipal election held in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994; municipal elections are held every five years. The previous municipal elections were held in 2016.