Municipal Demarcation Board: briefing

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Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs

15 February 2000
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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report


15 February 2000

Documents Handed Out:
Rationalisation (attached to end of minutes - Appendix 1))
[If you would like the Power Point version, email]
Capacity of District (Category C) or Local (Category B) Municipalities to Perform Municipal Functions and Powers

Press briefing by Municipal Demarcation Board held on 21 February 2000 (attached to end of minutes - Appendix 2)

The committee was briefed by the Municipal Demarcation Board on the present state of demarcation and the Board's recommendations regarding six metropolitan councils, 235 local municipalities and 46 district management areas. There are ten cross-border municipalities whose boundaries straddle two provinces for which these provinces have to give approval.

Michael Sutcliffe, chairperson of the Municipal Demarcation Board, presented a slide presentation on the rationalisation process. He continued with an assessment of the capacity of Category B and C municipalities to perform the powers and functions conferred on them by the Constitution and the Municipal Structures Act (refer to documents for the briefing).

Many of the questions raised were particular to specific communities, and the inherent problems of demarcation. These questions have not been included. As such, this is a synopsis report of the questions posed by the committee.

Questions and Answers:
(Q) What determines where District Management Areas(DMA) are located?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe stated that establishing DMAs is a difficult balancing act, adding that it becomes increasingly problematic in areas that include National Parks. He said consultations with the Minister of Provincial and Local Government and the Members of the Executive Councils (MEC) must occur before these areas are published. He further stated that the MEC's view was to have a fewer number of DMAs covering larger areas.

(Q) Will the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) not open the voter rolls until the demarcation process is completed? Will there be enough time for to add to or adjust the voter rolls after demarcation?

(A) Dr Sutcliife stated that this is a matter under advisement by the IEC and the Department of Home Affairs, but that they would retain the current voter rolls until after the election. He felt that it made more sense not to change the rolls until after demarcation had been finalised. He also added that the Municipal Demarcation Board (MDB) has asked for legal advice on amending the Structures Act.

(Q) What is the formula as far as the number of voters per ward in local municipalities?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe said that the Minster will be producing the formula within the next week.

(Q) What is happening with the provinces that are not accepting the cross-boundary municipalities?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe stated in all these cases the provincial governments are talking, and that the MDB will be sitting down with the provincial governments and other interested parties in the next few days.

(Q) How does demarcation effect traditional leaders?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe stated the Constitution guarantees the powers and functions for municipalities, and that of all the submissions received by the Board, only a few pose problems as far as traditional leaders are concerned. He further said that the Board's first responsibility was to maintain the role of traditional leaders in the demarcation process. He added that they had submitted a report on their position to the President, and that the President may be getting involved.

(Q) How are you going to deal with financially stable municipalities combined with those that aren't?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe believed this was a historic issue, and that it was wrong to assume that financially stable municipalities are stable solely because of their boundaries. He stated that there are 490 municipalities that have poor institutions and financial capacity, and that the view of the Board was those municipalities should be combined with ones that are financially and institutionally stable.

(Q) Will wards be demarcated in time for elections?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe assured the committee that the wards will be demarcated in time., He added that most will be done in a period of two weeks, but that some areas were more difficult such as in Kwazula-Natal and the Northern Province. He stated that all wards would be done by May, 2000.
He added that there will be on-going consultations to deal with problems that arise in the future.

(Q) What effect will demarcation have on payments to the Councilor?

(A) Dr Sutcliife stated that this area fell outside of the Board's jurisdiction?

(Q) Are the objections put forth by Kwazula-Natal and the Eastern Cape the same?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe felt the objections were a result of the national and provincial leaders confusing the people on this process. This raised two issues for the MDB. First, the Board had to deal with backlash from the public because MP's had made misinformed statements, and two, that the Board needed to ensure that responsible engagement between the Government and organisations occurred in order to move forward.

(Q) Will it be possible for presentations to be made to the individual provinces?

(A) Dr Sutcliffe stated that from March 6-10, workshops will be held around the country involving the MDB, IEC, and the MEC jointly. These workshops will provide information on the new boundaries, and the demarcation and electoral processes.

Appendix 1:
Meeting National Assembly and NCOP Portfolio Committees
15 February2000

· There are likely to be:
· 6 (A Category) Metropolitan areas
· 46 (C category) District Municipalities
· 235 (B category) Local Municipalities
· District Management Areas in 14 of the District Councils.

· Board followed all statutory requirements
· In addition, numerous meetings with stakeholders
· Problem is that some stakeholders have not contributed to process: for example, while all Houses of Traditional Leaders have been actively brought into the process, the first submission made by a House was on 31 January 2000. Yet, over 120 submissions from individual traditional leaders have been received

[Note: Maps not included - view at]

· Total objections -132
· Additional DMAs
- Northern Portion of DC1
- Murraysburg Area
- Uniondale Area
· Modification to the northern most boundary of Cape Metro - farms into Malmesbury
· Sedgefield included into Knysna
· Calitzdorp into the Ladismith area
No Change
· Langebaan Area likely to remain as proposed, but Board will meet delegation
· Saron area to remain in Paarl

· Total objections - 47
· Kenhardt to be included with Keimoes area
· Riemvasmaak into Keimoes
· Middelpos into Calvinia area
· Harts River area into the Barkley West area
No Change
· Orania - no change. Matter has also been referred to the President

· Total objections - 53
· Inclusion of Chalumna into EC125
· Port St Johns to follow the line of the magisterial district
· Mt Frere - certain villages re included
· Removal of some villages from Tsomo into Stutterheim area
· Willowmore is no longer a DMA
No Change
· Colchester to remain part of the Metro
· St Francis Bay to remain as currently proposed

· Total objections - 36
· Modification to the Bloemfontein area in the Thaba-Nchu area - inclusion of functionally linked villages
· Areas included in the Tweeling area
· Mines included in the Theunissen area
· Minor modification in Oranjeville area
· Viljoenskroon area still being investigated


· Total objections - 261
· Inclusion of Inanda Dam, Umacala-Gwala and Phephethwa Traditional Authorities into Metropolitan area
· Modification in the Richmond area
· Additional Category B created in DC23 - the Ntabamhlophe area
· Accommodated the Farmers Union request in DC26
· Emakhosini now included into the Ulundi area
· Nkwazi area now included into KZ292
No Change
· Table Mountain not included into Metro
· Melmoth farmers request not possible

· Total objections- 210 but 120 from Marloth Park
· Modifications in the Nelspruit area - farms included
· Farms included in the Standerton area
· Carolina area - still undecided
No Change
· Marloth Park - to remain as proposed by the Board - however Lions Park no longer to be in the DMA


· Total objections - 148
· Amalgamated NP364 and NP362
· Changes made to the Thohoyandou area
· Pietersburg - the inclusion of Perskebuilt and Bloodriver
No Change
· Naboomspruit to remain in CBDC
· Louis Trichardt area to remain as proposed by the Board

· Total objections -72
· Some minor adjustments to Brits area
· NW371 split
· NW386 amalgamated
· Change to Schweizer Reneke area
· Change to the Bloemhof area
No Change
· Pudimore area to remain as proposed by the Board

· Total Objections - 58
· Some changes Western Johannesburg boundary
· Meyerton to be re-aligned
· Hammanskraal / Temba divided - still under discussion
No Change
· Modderfontein to remain in Johannesburg

· During week of 14 February to finalise boundaries
· Respective provincial legislatures to pass resolutions within next few weeks
· Work on National Act and provincial agreements will then continue

· Deserts and semi-arid areas
· State protected and managed conservation areas
- All conservation areas managed (including private land) by South African National Parks be considered as DMA's. The Richtersveld and a previously identified portion of the Kalahari Gemsbok Park are excluded
- There are a number of private nature reserves along the boundaries of the Kruger National Park who are not contracted with SANP, but who have co-operation agreements with it regarding the movement of game. These nature reserves are closely linked to the conservation/nature reserve profile of the area and should be part of the DMA
- All declared nature reserves or conservation areas managed by Provincial Governments should be considered as DMA's
- All land held in trust by the State which are located within established conservation areas be considered to be DMA's. The exception should be the Richtersveld National Park which should form part of NC061
· Special Economic Areas


The Local Government: Municipal Structures Act, 1998, provides a definite and clearly defined role for the Municipal Demarcation Board which not only justifies the Board's role, but in fact obliges it, to concern itself with the division of functions and powers between district (Category C) and Local (Category B) municipalities.

- Section 85(4)(a)(i) requires the Board, when determining or redetermining the boundaries of a district or local municipality, to consider whether the municipality to be established in the area will have the capacity to perform the functions and exercise the powers that will be vested in it in terms of section 84(1) or (2). Once the Board has completed its boundary determination it must convey its assessment of the municipality's capacity to the MEC.

- Scale and function
- Policy and implementation
- Funding and accountability

List taken from Part B of Schedule 4 and 5 of the Constitution and Section 84 of Municipal Structures Act and assigned Category C and B [not included]

- Analysis of Institutional and Financial Capacity
- Existing 843 municipalities
- New boundaries
· Detailed assessments to be workshopped with each MEC

· Metropolitan Areas:
* No more than 270 councillors
· * Presently range from 473161 to 1557900 voters
· District Councils:
· * Range from 24328 to 712207 voters
· Local Municipalities:
· * Range from 2400 to 328459 voters

Still on track:
· 22 February 2000 final boundaries to be published
· Councillor formulae expected shortly
· Ward delimitation to formally begin

Appendix 2:


Pretoria Office: iParioli, Ground Floor, Block B2, 1166 Park Street,
Postal Address: Private Bag X28, Hatfield 0028
Phone: 012 3422481 Fax: 012 3422480

22 February 2000


The Municipal Demarcation Board met on 21 February 2000 to consider all
submissions and objections made to the Board in respect of the outer
boundaries of all municipalities in South Africa. The Board had previously
met in this regard on 7, 13 and 14 February 2000.

As at the 15th February a total of 2353 submissions and objections had been
received by the Demarcation Board. The table below illustrates the total
number of objections received by province and divides this total between
submissions and objections.

Province Cat A&C Submissions Received Cat B Submissions Received Cat A, B &
C Objections Received TOTAL %
Eastern Cape: 85 116 53 254 10.8
Free State: 46 60 36 142 6.0
Gauteng: 131 28 53 212 9.0
KZN: 131 154 136 421 17.9
Mpumalanga: 65 48 183 296 12.6
North West: 33 39 29 101 4.3
Northern Cape: 46 73 47 166 7.1
Northern Province: 46 75 79 200 8.5
Western Cape: 204 220 132 556 23.6
National: 3 2 5 0.2
TOTAL: 787 816 750 2353 100.0

The number of submissions and objections received varied from province to
province. The greatest number of submissions and objections were received
from the Western Cape with 23.6% (556), followed by Kwa-Zulu Natal with
17.9% (421). Mpumalanga submitted 12.6% (296) of the objections and
submissions received, Eastern Cape 10.8% (254), Gauteng 9% (212), Northern
Province 8.5% (200), Northern Cape 7.1% (166), Free State 6% (142), and
North West 4.3% (101).

It is important to point out that the above numbers include multiple
objections received in regard to one particular issue. In some cases, such
as in Mpumalanga and to a lesser degree in the Western Cape, this had the
effect of skewing the totals per province. For example:

In Gauteng the total included 8 objections regarding Meyerton;
In Mpumalanga the total included 120 objections regarding Marloth Park and 6
regarding Bethal;
In the Western Cape the total included 10 objections from Helderberg, 12
objections in regard to Paarl and 8 objections in regard to Franschoek.

The respective totals per province are illustrated in the pie chart below.

The Board has now finalised its recommendations and re-determinations of all
boundaries and these will be published in the relevant gazettes. Presuming
that the Board's recommendations for Cross Boundary Municipalities are
accepted by the provincial legislatures and National Assembly, the following
arrangement of municipalities should obtain:

6 Metropolitan areas;
41 District Councils without any Cross Boundary Municipalities, containing
some 215 Local Municipalities;
5 District Councils which are across provincial boundaries containing some
17 Local Municipalities.
In total there will be around 284 municipalities throughout South Africa, a
reduction from some 843 municipalities.

Some of the resolutions taken by the Board include:

· The Board noted that 2 353 submissions and objections had been received.
Of these, a number were received from attorneys. Where necessary further
investigations were conducted to place the Board in a position to make a
decision. The Board considered each objection as required by the Act and
where applicable its initial determination has been confirmed, varied or
· In considering these objections, the Board has satisfied itself that it
has properly considered each and every objection provided to the Board
within the time frames allowed. The Board considered the submissions and
objections on 7, 13, 14 and 21 February 2000. The Board is satisfied that it
would be able to justify its decisions if they were subjected to judicial
· The Board considered all objections in relation to the provisions in
sections 24 and 25 of the Municipal Demarcation Act, 1998 and resolved to
re-determine all category A, B and C boundaries in terms of section 21(1)(b)
and to publish the section 21 notices in the Provincial Gazettes.

· The Board commissioned research into District Management Areas and has
decided to declare only the larger conservation areas which are under the
overall management of SA National Parks or the Provincial Government as
District Management Areas. In addition, some deserts or semi-desert areas
have also been included as DMAs.
· The Board considered submissions made by some traditional leaders to
declare their areas as District Management Areas. The Board believes that
such a declaration would not be correct and indeed would take the provision
of municipal services out of the direct control of local municipalities. In
this regard, the Board believes these traditional leaders have been poorly
advised in making such submissions.
· The Board also resolved to withdraw its declaration of District Management
areas published in the Government Gazette on 24 December 1999 and to declare
District Management Areas in terms of section 6 of the Structures Act, 1998.
· The Minister and MECs were consulted in terms of section 6 of the
Municipal Structures Act.

· The Board resolved to publish its proposals for municipal boundaries
extending across provincial boundaries in the relevant Provincial Gazettes
and to afford the relevant provincial legislatures an opportunity to
consider the boundaries in terms of section (6A) of the Constitution.
· The Chairperson will be communicating with the Speakers of each provincial
legislature in this regard, requesting that resolutions be passed by the
provincial legislatures no later than the 15 April 2000.

· The Board resolved to determine the capacity of each municipality in terms
of section 85(4) of the Municipal Structures Act, 1998 and to convey its
detailed assessments of the capacity of each municipality in relation to the
powers and functions to be performed by them, to the MECs.
· The Board is in the process of arranging meetings with each MEC to convey
these assessments and also to request that over the next few months the MECs
work closely with the Board and the national departments of Finance and
Provincial and Local Government in finalising their responses.

Dr. Michael Sutcliffe
Chairperson: Municipal Demarcation Board


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