Voters take part in the sixth municipal elections held in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994 on November 1, 2021. Picture: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency (ANA)
Voters take part in the sixth municipal elections held in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994 on November 1, 2021. Picture: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency (ANA)

Political parties have until November 23 to set up municipal councils

By Baldwin Ndaba Time of article published Nov 16, 2021

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Johannesburg - All 213 of the 257 municipalities will have until Tuesday next week to convene a full council meeting to elect an executive mayor and speaker.

The November 23 deadline comes about after the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) on November 9 gazetted the names and final allocation of seats of the 9 473 councillors who won seats in the municipal elections held on November 1.

The 213 municipal councils across the country have 14 days in which to hold their first meetings.

Municipal managers bear responsibility for convening these first council meetings.

In the first meeting of local councils, the commission will be conducting elections for the councillors who will be representing those local councils on district councils.

This segment of the composition of the district councils constitutes 60% of the seats. The first meeting of district councils will be preceded by the first meetings of local councils.

If the parties fail to reach an agreement on the formation of a council on November 23, the provincial MEC for co-operative governance and traditional affairs or the national minister will intervene and run the affairs of the council for a period of 90 days until by-elections are held to elect new councillors.

The DA, however, has warned that it would go to court to force all political parties to attend council meetings and elect a mayor and speaker. DA leader John Steenhuisen said the Constitutional Court had made a order barring councillors from boycotting council meetings.

Of the 9 473 councillors in the country, the youngest, aged 20, was elected in the municipal council of Merafong in Gauteng, while the oldest, at 83, was elected in KwaZulu-Natal in the municipality of Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.

There were 5 975 male councillors (63%) and 3 498 female councillors (37%) elected. Of the male councillors elected, 2 712 came from proportional representation (PR) lists, 3 214 from wards and a further 49 were independents who had contested wards.

Of the female councillors elected, 2 294 were elected from PR lists, 1 202 from wards and two were independents who had contested wards.

Of the 325 political parties that contested the elections, 167 managed to secure a seat in a council. A total of 51 independent candidates managed to win wards in the various councils across the country.

There are 3 841 councillors who are returning to councils and 5 632 new councillors.

One elected PR councillor in the Emalahleni Municipality in Mpumalanga has died. This elected councillor will be replaced in terms of prescribed PR procedures.

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Political Bureau

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