Municipal Administration N5

Avril Kruger

© Future Managers 2013 All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, or otherwise, without prior permission of the copyright owner. To copy any part of this publication, you may contact DALRO for information and copyright clearance. Any unauthorised copying could lead to civil liability and/or criminal sanctions.

Telephone: 086 12 DALRO (from within South Africa); +27 (0)11 712-8000 Telefax: +27 (0)11 403-9094 Postal Address: P O Box 31627, Braamfontein, 2017, South Africa www.dalro.co.za ISBN 978-1-77581-042-1  This book was compiled for students studying towards the National Certificate in Public Management N5 at FET colleges. The book was compiled using the syllabus for Municipal Administration N5. First published 2013

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Contents
Module 1 – The origin of municipal authorities 1. Origin of municipal authorities............................................................................................................................ 2 1.1 Introduction .................................................................................................................................................. 2 1.2 Development of urban areas ....................................................................................................................... 2 1.2.1 Up to the end of the 18th century ................................................................................................. 2 1.2.2 The 19th century .............................................................................................................................. 2 1.3 The stages of development of urban areas ................................................................................................. 3 1.3.1 Division of urban areas into sections or parts .......................................................................... 4 1.3.2 Squatter camps ................................................................................................................................. 4 1.3.3 Slums ................................................................................................................................................. 5 1.3.4 Tribal villages ................................................................................................................................... 5 1.4 Origin of towns and cities............................................................................................................................ 6 1.4.1 Characteristics of the development of towns and cities ............................................................. 6 1.5 Procedures and conditions for development in a town/city ................................................................... 8 1.5.1 The procedure for the establishment/development of a town or city ...................................... 9 1.5.2 Conditions imposed on applications for new development ...................................................... 9 1.5.3 Control over buildings and requirements for buildings............................................................. 9 1.6 The emergence of local authorities ........................................................................................................... 10 1.6.1 Local authorities during the transfer of authority from the Dutch to the British ................ 11 1.7 Regional services councils ......................................................................................................................... 11 1.7.1 Financing of regional service councils........................................................................................ 11 1.8 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 11 Review questions ........................................................................................................................................................ 12 Module 2 – Reason for existence of municipal authorities 1. The reason for existence of local government .................................................................................................. 14 1.2. Reasons for existence of municipalities ................................................................................................... 14 1.3. Summary................................. ..................................................................................................................... 15 Review question ....... ................................................................................................................................................... 15 Module 3 – Environment in which municipal authorities function 1. Environment in which municipal authorities function .................................................................................. 18 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 18 1.2 Environmental factors................................................................................................................................ 18 1.2.1 Physical factor ................................................................................................................................ 18 1.2.2 Social factor .................................................................................................................................... 20 1.2.3 Economic factor............................................................................................................................. 21 1.2.4 Judicial factor ................................................................................................................................ 22 1.2.5 Political factor ................................................................................................................................ 22 1.3 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 23 Review questions ........................................................................................................................................................ 23 Module 4 – The structure of a local authority 1. Services rendered by and powers of, municipal authorities ........................................................................... 26 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 26 1.2 Structure of a local authority..................................................................................................................... 26 1.3 Characteristics of services ......................................................................................................................... 27 1.4 Classification of services ............................................................................................................................ 27 1.4.1 Ambulance services....................................................................................................................... 28 1.4.2 Cemeteries and crematoria .......................................................................................................... 28

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1.4.3 Electricity ........................................................................................................................................ 29 1.4.4 Environmental pollution .............................................................................................................. 29 1.4.5 Health services ............................................................................................................................... 30 1.4.6 Housing ........................................................................................................................................... 31 1.4.7 Library services .............................................................................................................................. 32 1.4.8 Licences........................................................................................................................................... 32 1.4.9 Parks and sports grounds ............................................................................................................. 33 1.4.10 Rubbish and night-soil removal .................................................................................................. 33 1.4.11 Town and city planning ............................................................................................................... 34 1.4.12 Water provision ............................................................................................................................. 34 1.5 Powers of municipal authorities ............................................................................................................... 35 1.6 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 35 Module 5 – Levels of government 1. Relations between municipal authorities and between municipalities and other levels of the hierarchy .......................................................................................................................................... 38 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 38 1.2 Levels of government ................................................................................................................................. 38 1.3 Relations between local authorities and central government institutions. ......................................... 39 1.3.1 The role of Parliament .................................................................................................................. 40 1.3.2 Role of the State President ............................................................................................................ 40 1.3.3 Role of Cabinet .............................................................................................................................. 40 1.4 The relationship between local authorities and provincial government institutions ........................ 41 1.5. Relations and co-operation with other local authorities ....................................................................... 41 1.6 Conclusion...... ............................................................................................................................................. 42 Review questions ......................................................................................................................................................... 42 Module 6 – Who has the right to vote or qualifies as a voter 1. Municipal elections .............................................................................................................................................. 44 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 44 1.2 Right to vote (voter qualifications) ........................................................................................................... 44 1.2.1 Reasons for disqualification of voter ........................................................................................... 44 1.3 Voters’ roll .................................................................................................................................................... 45 1.3.1. Procedure for preparing a voters’ roll ......................................................................................... 45 1.4 Electoral wards ............................................................................................................................................ 45 1.5 Elections ....................................................................................................................................................... 46 1.5.1 Activities prior to election day ..................................................................................................... 46 1.5.2 Election day .................................................................................................................................... 48 1.6 Party politics ................................................................................................................................................ 51 1.6.1 Advantages of political party involvement in municipal elections ......................................... 51 1.6.2 Disadvantages of political party involvement in municipal elections .................................... 51 1.7 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 52 Review questions ......................................................................................................................................................... 52 Module 7 – Councillors 1. Municipal councillors .......................................................................................................................................... 54 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 54 1.2 Qualifications needed to be elected as councillor .................................................................................. 54 1.3 Reasons for being disqualified from election as a councillor ............................................................... 54 1.4 Conditions under which councillors serve / Code of conduct ............................................................. 54 1.4.1 General conduct of councillors.................................................................................................... 55 1.4.2 Attendance at meetings................................................................................................................. 55

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1.4.3 Sanctions for non-attendance of meetings ................................................................................. 55 1.4.4 Withdrawal from meetings .......................................................................................................... 55 1.4.5 Vested interest in council contracts ............................................................................................ 55 1.4.6 Personal gain .................................................................................................................................. 56 1.4.7 Declaration of interest................................................................................................................... 56 1.4.8 Councillors acting as agents ......................................................................................................... 56 1.4.9 Bribery and corruption ................................................................................................................. 56 1.4.10 Exemption from personal liability .............................................................................................. 56 1.4.11 Appointment as an official of a council ...................................................................................... 57 1.4.12 Rewards, gifts and favours ............................................................................................................ 57 1.4.13 Unauthorised disclosure of information .................................................................................... 57 1.4.14 Intervention in administration .................................................................................................... 57 1.4.15 Council property ........................................................................................................................... 57 1.5 Status of councillors ................................................................................................................................... 57 1.6 Functions of councillors ............................................................................................................................ 58 1.6.1 Representation ............................................................................................................................... 58 1.6.2 Participation in committees ......................................................................................................... 58 1.6.3 Deliberation in council meetings ................................................................................................ 58 1.6.4 Public liaison .................................................................................................................................. 59 1.7 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 59 Review questions ......................................................................................................................................................... 59 Module 8 – Mayors 1. Office-bearers of municipal councils ................................................................................................................. 62 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 62 1.2 The mayor .................................................................................................................................................... 62 1.2.1 Election of mayor (executive or non-executive mayor) ........................................................... 62 1.2.2 Functions and powers of executive mayors ............................................................................... 63 1.3 Deputy mayors ............................................................................................................................................ 64 1.4 Chairpersons of committees ..................................................................................................................... 64 1.5 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 64 Review questions ......................................................................................................................................................... 65 Module 9 – Committee system 1. Committee systems of muncipal councils ........................................................................................................ 68 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 68 1.2. The executive committee (previously known as the single or management committee) ................. 68 1.2.1 Composition of the executive committee................................................................................... 68 1.2.2 Powers and functions of the executive committee .................................................................... 68 1.2.3 Advantages ..................................................................................................................................... 69 1.2.4 Disadvantages ................................................................................................................................ 69 1.3 Committees to assist executive committees or executive mayors (previously known as multiple committees) ................................................................................................................................. 69 1.3.1 Advantages of the multiple committee system (portfolio committees) ................................. 71 1.3.2 Disadvantages of the multiple committee system .................................................................... 71 1.4 Metropolitan sub-councils ...................................................................................................................... 71 1.4.1 Composition of metropolitan sub-councils ............................................................................... 71 1.4.2 Functions and powers of sub-councils ....................................................................................... 72 1.5 Ward committees ........................................................................................................................................ 73 1.6 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 74

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Module 10 – Meeting procedures of municipal councils 1. Meeting procedures of municipal councils....................................................................................................... 76 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................................ 76 1.2 Rules of meeting procedures / standing orders ...................................................................................... 76 1.3 Reports ......................................................................................................................................................... 77 1.4 Notice of meeting ....................................................................................................................................... 78 1.5 Agenda ......................................................................................................................................................... 78 1.5.1 Format of agenda ........................................................................................................................... 78 1.5.2 Compilation of the agenda ........................................................................................................... 79 1.5.3 Rules for submission of agenda items. ........................................................................................ 80 1.5.4 Different agendas for the same meeting ..................................................................................... 80 1.5.5 Statutory provisions ...................................................................................................................... 80 1.6 Minutes ........................................................................................................................................................ 80 1.6.1 Order of items ................................................................................................................................ 81 1.6.2 Content ........................................................................................................................................... 81 1.6.3 Types of minutes ............................................................................................................................ 82 1.6.4 Compilation ................................................................................................................................... 82 1.6.5 Indexing .......................................................................................................................................... 82 1.6.6 Statutory provisions ..................................................................................................................... 83 1.7 Chairman .................................................................................................................................................... 83 1.7.1 Functions of the chairperson ....................................................................................................... 83 1.7.2 Powers of chairman ...................................................................................................................... 84 1.7.3 Cycle of events during a meeting ................................................................................................ 84 1.8 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................... 85 Review questions ......................................................................................................................................................... 85 Bibliography............ ................................................................................................................................... 87

Symbol key
Self-activity Group activity Remember/Definition Did you know? Note Discussion Point/ Pause for Thought Example Case study

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Module 1

The origin of municipal authorities
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • Explain the development of urban areas in South Africa – Discuss slums, tribal villages and squatter camps as part of town/city development Demonstrate an understanding of the origins of towns and cities – Discuss the characteristics of the development of a town or city – Discuss the procedures and conditions for establishing a town – Discuss the control over buildings Explain the emergence of local authorities Demonstrate an understanding of the role of regional services councils

Module 1

1.
1.1

Origin of municipal authorities
Introduction
All of us live in a town, city or urban area. The development of municipal authorities in South Africa has an interesting history, dating back to 1652. This is not a history lesson on local government, but we need to have a basic understanding of how municipal authorities arrived at the state on which they were, by 1993.

1.2

Development of urban areas

1.2.1 Up to the end of the 18th century
• When Jan Van Riebeeck set foot at the Cape of Good Hope in 1652, no communities were yet established. • Cape Town was the first urban area to be developed in Southern Africa. • The Dutch settlers governed the colony from 1652 till 1795, and for a short period from 1803 till 1806, on a centralised basis. • A system consisting of landdrosten and heemraden was established, where decisions were made with majority vote. • The landdrost was a government official with local functions. • The heemraden were white citizens appointed by governor. In later years the heemraden were elected. • This system was taken by the Voortrekkers to the Boer Republics and was used till replaced by British systems.

1.2.2 The 19th century
• From 1795 till 1803, and again from 1806 till 1910, the British ruled the colonies and influenced the development of local government. • The Voortrekkers moved to the east and north of the colony and in the process urban areas were created. • Port Elizabeth was created as a military station in 1799, and after the arrival of the British Settlers in 1920, developed quickly. • Durban was created in 1828, after King Chaka of the Zulus ceded the area where Durban is located, to Nathaniel Isaacs. • In 1839 Pietermaritzburg became the capital of Natal. • Bloemfontein was developed and became the capital of the Orange Free State in 1846. • Kimberley developed after the discovery of diamonds in 1867. • Johannesburg was established after the discovery of gold in 1886. • In 1855 Pretoria became the capital of Transvaal. Ordinances that set out the principles of local tax and the election of councillors, were passed in the two British Colonies of the Cape and Natal. In 1854 a new ordinance which was based on the local government laws in England, was passed in the Natal colony.

2

The origin of municipal authorities

For the first time in South Africa the following concepts were established: • Towns were constituted as legal corporate bodies. • Representatives were elected by voters registered on a voters’ roll. • The town council decided on local tax (rates) levied on valued properties. • Auditors had to audit transactions of all municipal activities. • The Town Clerk and other senior officials were appointed and not elected at a public meeting. • The committee system of making decisions was introduced.

1.3

The stages of development of urban areas
Urban areas went through different stages, from a few people living together, to thousands living in a small area. The stages can be identified as follows: • Hamlet: A small settlement in a rural area with only a few houses • Village: A group of houses and associated buildings, larger than a hamlet and smaller than a town, situated in a rural area. Hamlet • Town: An urban area that has a name, defined boundaries and a municipality - it is larger than a village and smaller than a city • City: A large urban area with a large population and businesses For many years people lived in small villages or on farms and had to satisfy their own needs. The basic needs that had to be satisfied were: • Water: People had to fetch and carry their own water from streams or rivers. • Lighting: Fires, candles and paraffin lamps were used for lighting. • Heat energy: Firewood was collected for fires or coal was bought for stoves and paraffin for lamps and primus stoves. • Food and meat: Animals were slaughtered for meat, and maize, grains, fruit and vegetables were grown for own use. People on farms provided for themselves and, with the assistance of neighbours and family, could produce their own food. As the number of people increased on the farms, there was not enough work for everybody and some people moved to urban areas to find work. This movement to urban areas to find work (urbanisation) is the reason for the development of towns and cities. White people could afford to buy or rent houses in towns and cities. Coloured and Black people who could not afford to buy or rent houses, erected dwellings which they could afford. These areas were called “locations” and later townships. A township is usually a town or part of a town. Historically, ‘township’ in South Africa referred to an urban residential area created for black migrant labour, beyond the town or city limits. Reference is sometimes made to ‘black township’, ‘coloured township’ and ‘Indian township’, meaning that these settlements were created for these population groups. By contrast, the white population resided in suburbs. Informal synonyms for township are ‘location’, ‘lokasie’, ’ilogishi’. Generally, every town/city has one or several townships associated with it. (www.statssa.gov.za)

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Module 1

1.3.1 Division of urban areas into sections or parts
Most urban areas developed in the same manner with certain sections and parts which can be identified as follows: • Suburbs: areas reserved for division into building stands (plots) for houses and churches • Streets and sidewalks for vehicles and pedestrians • Parks, sports grounds and cemeteries • Business areas: areas zoned for businesses, usually with a central business district (CBD) • Industrial sites: areas divided in to industrial sites for factories • Public buildings: areas for schools, libraries, museums, prisons, magistrate offices and railway stations Activity 1 Identify all the different sections/parts of the urban area that you passed through from the time you left home till the you got to college, as well as those you went on to visit during the day. This orderly division of urban areas is called land-use zoning and is important in areas where a large number of people live and work together. • • • • • A town plan is prepared for the area indicating the purpose and use of each piece of land, e.g. Suburb, business area, etc. The areas reserved for suburbs must be divided into small stands (plots) which people can buy to build houses on. Due to a larger demand for plots, the price will increase. In any urban area there are certain areas with larger plots for richer people. Smaller and more affordable plots will also be made available.

1.3.2 Squatter camps
Squatter camps can be defined as unplanned settlements, consisting mainly of informal dwellings (shacks), on land which has not been surveyed or proclaimed as residential.

With the movement of people from the farms and rural areas to the urban areas, problems are experienced with sufficient and suitable housing. Normally people will buy a plot and build a house, or buy or rent a house or flat. A lot of people do not have the means to buy or build houses and have to find a shelter or place to stay. Urban areas also do not have enough housing available for the influx of people to these areas. In South Africa, people have started building shelters on any open piece of land, which usually belongs to the local authority or a private individual. Any type of material like cardboard, timber, tins or plastic is used to build shelters. This type of informal erection of dwellings, is called a squatter camp.

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The origin of municipal authorities

Characteristics of squatter camps • The area is not divided into building stands or plots. • No streets are found. • No provision is made for essential services such as water, electricity and rubbish and night soil removal. • The dwellings erected are not safe. If a fire breaks out in one of the dwellings, it spreads quickly to the neighbouring dwellings. • People invade land and do not pay for it. • Living conditions in these areas are very unhealthy because a lot of people live in a small area. • The houses are built very close to one another. This results in the area being very densely populated and having a high crime rate. Squatter camps are not the ideal solution, but they provide housing for a large number of people who cannot afford anything else. If municipalities try to relocate people they get a lot of resistance because the squatters prefer living in these conditions. Solutions for squatter camps • Upgrade squatter camps into proper urban areas. • Divide open land into building stands. • Improve construction of dwellings. • Provide streets and essential services. • The state can make fully serviced stands available to people. • Proper building materials can be made available.

1.3.3 Slums
• Slums develop when people neglect their houses or other buildings and allow them to deteriorate to such an extent that they become dangerous to live in. • Poverty is the main reason for the appearance of slums. • The municipalities should have strict rules and measures in place to prevent people from endangering other people’s lives by erecting unsafe buildings or neglecting properties. • If municipalities discover a slum, the owner of the property must be ordered to repair, clean or upgrade the property. • If the owner refuses to carry out such orders, the property must be demolished to ensure the safety of people.

1.3.4 Tribal villages
Tribal villages can be defined as settlements in a tribal area. A village has boundaries, which include populated and also agricultural areas, e.g. grazing and crop land or forests. Villages are under the jurisdiction of tribal authorities, headed by chiefs, while sub-chiefs are direct principals of villages. • Tribal villages are usually found amongst black population groups. • Rules and processes of urban areas are not followed in tribal villages. • Tribal villages are governed by informal rules which are enforced upon the inhabitants by the tribal chiefs. 5

Module 1

• The land belongs to the tribe. • The area is not divided into building stands and streets. There are certain advantages, but also certain disadvantages for tribal villages. Advantages of tribal villages: • People construct their own houses, which gives them self respect and independence. • People fulfil their own needs according to their abilities and expectations. Disadvantages of tribal villages: • No essential services like water, electricity and refuse removal are provided, which can cause unhealthy conditions. • Large pieces of land are used unproductively because tribal villages are not densely populated and agricultural land is wasted. If a tribal village becomes densely populated, it can cause a lot of health and safety problems. If this happens, it should be declared an urban area and dealt with according to the rules and regulations that apply in urban areas.

1.4

Origin of towns and cities
Why did people settle in a specific place? People deliberately chose a place for various reasons such as the availability of water; the presence of minerals, diamonds or gold, and the safety of the community. Communities were established, which became permanent settlements. These settlements were well organised and able to support and maintain community structures. The settlerment went through the stages from hamlet, village, town and eventually cities were established. These early settlements were a form of local government. There were rules, order and activities. Where people concentrate in a specific place, a spontaneous form of government develops. The main purpose of towns and cities is to serve as a place to live and work. People build houses, protect themselves, go to work and take part in community life. All towns or cities develop for their own reasons, but there are four characteristics which will identify any town or city.

1.4.1 Characteristics of the development of towns and cities
Ecological environment • A town or city will develop in a specific ecological environment. • It will either be close to a river, the sea, trading routes, mines or mountains for protection. • When people start developing an area, they will reconstruct the environment to satisfy their needs. • They will cut down trees, fill hollows, make excavations or build up against mountains to satisfy their needs.

6

The origin of municipal authorities

Physical structure • Physical structures are man-made buildings like churches, trading stores, schools, etc. • These physical structures play an important role in in the economic development of a town or city. • Some experts say that in South Africa the first buildings in towns were churches. • Then trading stores and businesses developed around the churches. • Most of the towns in South Africa have a church in the middle of the town, for example, Beaufort West. Human beings have to exist • People have needs that must be satisfied, and when a lot of people live in the same area, different needs exist. • To satisfy these needs and maintain order in the community, a type of government had to be formed. • That was the starting point for local government. • Municipalities were established to maintain order in the community and they even provided work for inhabitants. Communication channels • Communication channels are the network that link people, other towns and cities, the station and harbour. • Roads and streets, telephone and internet cables, electricity cables and pipelines are needed to connect services and people. • The planning departments of municipalities include communication channels in the plans for development of the city or town.
Transportation system Smart buildings

Personal communications

Communication networks

Wireless comminication

Healthcare services Process industry

Smart grid

Types of communication channels which must be included in the development plans of cities/towns

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Module 1

1.5

Procedures and conditions for development in a town/city
If an owner of a piece of land wants to develop that piece of land, there are various procedures that must be followed, as there are conditions imposed on the development by the municipality and requirements that must be fulfilled for the development to go ahead. The owner of the land can be an individual person, a company, provincial or central government or the local authority itself. If the sub-division of one or more stands (plots) is required, the process is not so complicated. Below is a summary of the procedure that must be followed before new development or the establishment of a new town can take place. This will be discussed in detail in this section.

Owner obtains approval, divides land and sells stands which are registered with the Registrar of Deeds before application can be made for development to begin. Procedure (Ord 85 of 85) - apply & submit 26 copies - application considered by council & Administrator who can approve or reject

Control & requirements - suburb image not affected - buildings hygienic & safe - with proper ventilation - meet foundation & height of wall requirements. Conditions to be met - supply of water and electricity - entry to streets -business away from residential areas

When development of a large area is undertaken, provision must be made for: • streets and sidewalks • water and electricity reticulation • public buildings • parks • refuse dump sites • residential and business areas. The procedure for the development of land takes time, and the following administrative processes have to take place: • The development must be approved by the provincial government. • Ownership must be transferred from one owner to another. • The stands have to be accurately measured and divided. • The deed of sale must be registered by the Registrar of Deeds of the province. • The Registrar of Deeds must record the sale in the property register.

8

The origin of municipal authorities

1.5.1 The procedure for the establishment/development of a town or city
The development and use of land and buildings are generally controlled in terms of various laws and regulations, for example, the Land Use Planning Ordinance (Ordinance 15 of 1985) and National Building Regulations. The procedure is as follows: • The applicant must apply in writing to the Director of Community Development of the specific local authority. • The necessary completed forms, plans, documents and fees must be handed in with the application. • 26 copies of the application must be submitted for the various government institutions, such as SARS and Post Office, that need to be notified. • If the land falls outside the borders of an existing municipality, a new town may be established with a new name. • The Director of Community Development will inform the Surveyor General of the province of the application. • The application will then be submitted to the committee of the town council dealing with land development. • The intention of development is published in the Provincial Gazette and one or more local newspapers. • Any person who wants to object to the proposed development can inspect the relevant documents at the municipal council office. • An objection can be submitted to the council committee dealing with development within a certain time limit. • Representation for the development can also be submitted to the committee. • If the proposed development lies within an existing municipality or within five kilometres of its boundary, the municipal council should give their comment. • If the time limit for representation or objections has expired, the chairman of the council committee will set dates for inspection as well as the time and venue for the hearing of objections and representations. • When the inspections and hearings are concluded, the council committee makes a recommendation to the Administrator of the province. • The Administrator of the province may approve or reject the applications or postpone the decision.

1.5.2 Conditions imposed on applications for new development
• • • • • • • • • Provision must be made for the supply of water and electricity. Provision must be made for entry to streets and stands. Land must be set aside for public purposes, e.g. parks, schools, etc. Fees as prescribed must be paid. Business stands must border the main street with sufficient parking space. Stands for industries should be situated away from residential stands. Stands for flats and hotels should be larger than residential stands. Layout of development must make provision for easy flow of traffic. The proposed development should meet all requirements of Ordinances and Acts of Parliament.

1.5.3 Control over buildings and requirements for buildings
After the application process ha been completed and the development approved by the Administrator of the province, the owners of the land may proceed with the erection of buildings.

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Module 1

Authorities laid down standards for the erection of buildings in urban areas. - Detailed plans of the building must be submitted to the local authority. - Local authority will have to approve plans or request amendments. If plans are approved, the construction of the building can begin, but the local authority has certain common requirements that must be met. Common requirements for the construction of buildings • The image and appearance of the suburb should not be affected by the building. • The rights and interests of neighbours should not be infringed by the building. • Building should be hygienic and safe. • Building should not create fire or health hazards. • Sufficient ventilation should be allowed for all rooms. • Specifications regarding foundation and height of walls should be met. • Flow of traffic should not be obstructed.

1.6

The emergence of local authorities
• Urban development started in Cape Town in 1652. • People started moving inland and by 1682 there was so many people settled in the vicinity of Stellenbosch that the Governor of the Cape of Good Hope appointed four leading farmers as heemraden to solve disputes. • A landrost (magistrate) was appointed in 1685 for Stellenbosch and, together with the heemraden, he served on a council to manage the local affairs of Stellenbosch and surrounding farms. • The matters dealt with were the maintenance and construction of furrows to convey water, water division, proper standards in construction of buildings and the removal of rubbish. • As people moved further inland, more villages and councils (landrost and heemraden) were established. • Swellendam was established in 1745 and Graaf Reinet in 1786. • The councils governed these villages in the Cape Colony until they were abolished by the British on 31 December 1827.

1.6.1 Local authorities during the transfer of authority from the Dutch to the British
• From 1785 the municipal affairs of Cape Town were administered by the College van Commisarisse uit den Raad van Justitia that consisted of three Dutch and three private persons. • The British took over the Cape Colony in 1795 and a Burgersenaat that consisted of six private persons appointed by the British replaced the College. • In 1802 the Burgersenaat was replaced by the Raad der Gemeente when the Dutch took back the Cape Colony. This lasted for only three years. • In 1806 it changed back to a Burgersenaat when the British took over again. • The Burgersenaat was abolished on 27 December 1827 as well as the Council of Landrost and Heemraden in the rural towns. • From 1 January 1828 the Cape Colony had no local authorities. • Local authority matters were handled by the resident magistrates. • Municipal Ordinance 9 of 1836 was approved, which made provision for the election of a small number of commissioners to serve on the council. • Only persons who paid rates were eligible to be elected as commissioners. 10

The origin of municipal authorities

• Ordinance 9 of 1936 served as basis for legislation for local authorities in Natal (1847), Orange Free State (1856) and the Transvaal (1883).

1.7

Regional services councils
Although regional services councils have been abolished, they will be discussed briefly. With the increasing problems associated with urbanisation, cities had developed in an uncontrolled manner. Towns and cities close to each other had to co-operate with each other to provide the necessary services. The Regional Services Council Act, 1985 (Act 109 of 1985) established regional services councils to assist with the performance of functions. The regional services councils were not forced on a local authority who could decide whether they want a regional services council or not. They could make a request to the Minister of Constitutional Development and submit planning to institute such a council in that area. A regional service council consisted of a chairman appointed by the relevant provincial Administrator and as many members as determined by the Administrator. The members represented all local authorities in that region. The number of representatives allocated to each local authority was determined by the contribution of funds to the regional services council. A maximum of five members was allowed.

1.7.1 Financing of regional service councils
Finance was obtained by: • Levies on local authorities buying services • Donations, loans and state appropriations • Fines for contravening legislation of regional services councils • Interest on dividends • A regional service levy on the salary of each employee and employer • An establishment levy on the turnover of businesses Regional services councils were abolished and levies on payrolls were stopped.

1.8

Conclusion
The development of urban areas and the establishment of local authorities in South Africa started in 1652. People started moving inland and settled in areas where they could survive. As more people started living together, more services and order were needed, which resulted in a form of local government. Local authorities were established through election by the inhabitants in order to render such services. As towns grew and cities were established, the development of vacant land had to be administered, and so procedures and conditions were laid down for developments which needed to be controlled by the local authority. Although different types of councils were established after 1652, it is clear that whether it was a village, town or city, a local government, with an elected council, was needed to manage that municipality.

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Module 1

Review questions 1. Give a short explanation of the development of local authorities in South Africa in the 18th and 19th centuries. 2. Urban areas went through different stages, from a few people living together, to thousands living in a small area. Name and describe the stages of urban development in South Africa.

3. For many years the urban areas were small villages and most people in South Africa lived on farms where they had to satisfy their own needs. Name and describe how needs and services were satisfied before the inception of municipalities. 4. With the influx of people from the rural to the urban areas, problems are experienced in finding suitable housing. Many settle for squatter camps. 4.1 List SIX characteristics of squatter camps. 4.2 List FOUR possible solutions for squatter camps. 5. Tribal villages can be defined as a settlement in a tribal area under the jurisdiction of tribal authorities, headed by chiefs. Give TWO advantages and TWO disadvantages of tribal villages. 6. The origin of towns and cities can be traced back to the development of close communities. All towns or cities developed for its own reasons but there are four characteristics which will identify a town or city. Discuss the characteristics of the development of a town or city.

7. The establishment of a town of new development is prescribed in Ordinance 15 of 1985. Explain the procedure for establishing a town or for a new development in an existing municipality. 8. The initiative of township development is vested in the owner of the land which can be divided into building stands or plots. The owner must take into consideration the conditions imposed on applicants. State the conditions imposed on applicants when establishing a town or new development. 9. Anyone with the intention of constructing a fixed structure or building on a plot, or adding to an existing building, has to submit detailed plans to the municipality which will in turn approve or amend the plans. There are certain common requirements to be followed. List SIX common requirements when building a house. 10. Name SIX sources of finance for regional services councils.

12

Module 2

Reasons for the existence of municipal authorities
After completion of this module you should be able to: • Explain the reasons for the existence of municipal authorities.

Module 2

1.

Local government
Local government in the form of municipalities is important for many reasons; not only that it is the level of government closest to the millions of citizens of South Africa, but also that it is constitutionally responsible for providing a range of services to satisfy the needs of citizens. Many reasons are given for and against the existence of local government. As more services are delegated from central government to local authorities, the importance of the role of municipalities in the government and administration of the country cannot be overlooked.

1.1

Reasons for the existence of municipalities
• Municipalities ensure that the five basic principles of public administration: political supremacy, public accountability, democratic government, fairness and reasonableness, and effectiveness are implemented successfully. The community is closer to policy determination and executive institutions, which makes participation through ratepayers associations or public meetings possible and more effective. • Higher authorities cannot provide the wide range of services required by inhabitants of towns and cities and therefore provision of services must be made on local level. • Municipal authorities must make arrangements to generate most of their own funds for the rendering of services. Because services are rendered within a specific area, it is easier to use funds more economically. • It is cheaper to render indispensable services required by communities on local level because higher authorities are not in the area and distances are long. Long distance administration is ineffective, time-consuming and costly. • With the delegation of government activities and power to regional and local authorities, division of labour and specialisation is obtained. This lightens the burden on central administration to provide in the needs of communities. • There is a big difference betweenn the needs of inhabitants in small and large towns, and in cities. Municipalities know best how to provide in their needs. Cities have more specialised services than towns. For example, refuse removal in a city, due to the large amount of refuse, is done by specialised trucks which mechanically lift and tip the bins into the truck, where a small town will use a normal truck to remove refuse. A small municipality does not have the money or need for a specialised truck. • Inhabitants of a municipality are directly influenced by the public activities taking place in their communities, which increase public interest in the administration of municipalities. They pay for services and can thus demand better or specialised services. • Officials working for the municipality and council members live in the municipal district and are aware of the needs and interests of the community. As they also make use of the services, better administrative practices and improved services can be developed to satisfy needs. • Vast technological development and the complexity of community needs require specialisation and innovation. Local authorities will be the first to become aware of these specialised needs in the community. It is easier and more economical for the local authority to adjust and satisfy these needs than fora higher authority that is not close to the community. • Local authorities sometimes have to implement central policy without delay. Municipal authorities have the necessary expertise and equipment to implement such policy. Often the speed at which policy is implemented will determine its success. Long distance implementation by higher authorities can hamper fast policy implementation.

14

Reasons for the existence of municipal authorities

• • • • • •

Inhabitants as well as local authority officials have interests in their own local environment in the form of property, businesses, etc. For this reasons municipal councils will ensure that the best service that they can afford will be rendered without putting extra burdens on higher authorities. Municipal councils can best stimulate local initiative. It is important that local communities are prosperous and economically stable. If there are signs of decline or absence of services, higher authorities might have to step in to provide services which can be costly because of long distance administration. Municipal authorities have proven over the years that they can implement and execute policies of central government. If higher authorities had to execute such policies, expensive organisational arrangements would be needed. Municipalities can render services cheaper if they are decentralised, and local authorities can act as agents of central government. It is not easy for higher authorities to utilise resources such as personnel and money effectively from a distance and ensure a high standard and quality. Municipalities can assist central government with certain policies, e.g. Tourism because they are on ground level where policies are implemented. Elected municipal councils make it possible for ordinary inhabitants to take part in public affairs through voting for or standing as councillors.

The reasons for the existence of municipalities are summarised below. Use this as a guideline for your studies.

1.2

Summary
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Municipalities ensure that principles of public administration are upheld. Higher authorities cannot render all the services needed by the inhabitants. Municipalities generate own funds and use money economically. Services are rendered more cheaply by the authority in the area. Municipalities lighten the burden of central government. Different municipalities have different needs and know best how to satisfy them. Interest in administration is increased and, because they pay for services, inhabitants can demand better services. Municipal workers and councillors live in the area and need the same services, which can improve services. Specialised needs are known by LA and can be satisfied faster and more cheaply on local than higher level. Policies are implemented faster. Inhabitants & officials share interests in environment, which ensures better service. Local initiative stimulated to create economical stability and better services LA is better situated to implement central policy. Higher authorities cannot utilise resources effectively and efficiently. LA helps with formulation of central policy.

Review question 1. To facilitate the government and administration of the state power is divided into three levels of government. State TEN reasons why services are rendered by the third level of government.

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Module 2

16

Module 3

Environment in which municipal authorities function
After completion of this module you should be able to: • Understand the different environmental factors which influence the way that municipalities function, and - explain the physical factors in which municipalities function. - discuss the social factors - discuss the economic factors - explain the judicial factors - discuss how politics exerts an influence.

Module 3

1.
1.1

Environment in which municipal authorities function
Introduction
All municipalities function within an identified geographical boundary as determined by legislation. The municipality has to take the environmental factors into account when fulfilling its expected duties. Services are rendered to fulfil the physical, social, economic, judicial and political expectations of the community. Environmental factors will differ from place to place because human beings have different needs in different circumstances. The main objective of a municipal authority is to satisfy the needs of the community by providing the necessary services. To succeed, the local authority will have to take the environmental factors into account.

1.2

Environmental factors
Here is a schematic representation of the environmental factors that will be discussed in this module:
Physical factor Economic factor

Social factor

Municipal authority

Judicial factor

Political factor

Religious factor

1.2.1 Physical factor
The physical environment in which a municipality functions is often established in the area and is very difficult to change. People realise the importance of living in harmony with their environment and steps are taken in urban areas to protect the urban ecology against overexploitation and to balance the needs of the inhabitants against the physical factors influencing services. We will now look at various physical factors that influence municipal functions. Geographical characteristics • These include aspects such as mountains, hills, valleys, rivers, etc. • They i influence the development of the town/city. • They make some areas unsuitable for building houses. • Although humans are systematically succeeding in manipulating the physical factors, they still have to be submissive to the environment. • Municipalities are developing these geographical aspects to improve the general welfare of the community.

18

Environment in which municipal authorities function

• A balance should always be maintained between conservation and development where the demand for growth of cities increases. • Geographical characteristics can also be developed as tourist attractions, for example, Table Mountain in Cape Town and the Big Hole in Kimberley which generate income and stimulate economic growth in the area.

Table Mountain was elected as one of the seven natural wonders of the world

Historical areas • Historical buildings and areas need to be protected. • A balance should be maintained between conservation of historical areas and development. • Decisions have to be made on which buildings to keep and where to develop in order to maintain the character of the city. • These decisions have an influence on the economic, aesthetic and community factors. • As cities or towns develop and expand, better infrastructure is needed, which makes it difficult to keep a balanced environment. • Difficult decisions have to be taken, for example, if a historical building has to be demolished so that another road lane can be bluit to solve the traffic problem. Climate • Towns and cities can experience climatesranging from almost tropical to almost desert conditions. • These differences in climate have an effect on the growth and development of local authorities. • Rainfall and climate must be taken into account when building roads, bridges and buildings. • When development is planned, factors such as floods, droughts and earthquakes need to be taken into account. • Municipalities should be aware of the climatic conditions and be prepared to handle disaster situations. Fauna and flora • ‘Fauna and flora’ is the variety of animals, fish species, birds and plants found in a specific area. • A municipal authority has an obligation to protect the indigenous fauna and flora in its area. • Nature reserves are established for the protection of fauna and flora. • The nature reserves ensure protection and serve as tourist attractions.

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Module 3

1.2.2 Social factor
The social factor deals with the development of society. In South Africa with its diverse society, a lot of social problems are experienced. Some of the citizens’ needs are partially met, but there are many who have not had their most basic needs met. The biggest social problems experienced by municipal authorities will be discussed. Housing This is the most important problem experienced by municipal authorities in urbanised and metropolitan areas. A part of the housing Act 107 of 1997 places a responsibility on municipalities to provide access to housing to the inhabitants in its area of jurisdiction. • In urban areas there is a big shortage of housing and this lead to other social problems like a high crime rate. • Space to provide housing is a problem in urban areas. • Families do not have enough privacy as too many people live together. • In some areas (squatter camps) it is difficult to provide services like refuse and night soil removal, which can cause a health risk. • Research has found that where there is a shortage of housing, drunkenness is very high. • It is difficult for municipal authorities to provide services under these conditions and ensure the safety and welfare of the inhabitants. • A high crime rate is closely related to the social and physical environment in which people live. Literacy, education and employment For a stable social environment, a person must be literate (can read and write), have an education and employment. • Provision of education is not the function of a municipality but it can contribute (through bursaries and facilities) to assist other organs of state to provide sufficient education. • With a good education a person can obtain a job and earn money. • When earning a salary, a person can pay for social services like housing. • A municipality must be aware which areas have a high unemployment rate and low education and literacy rates, and assist where possible or inform higher authority of these needs. • A municipality needs to allocate funds to try to meet these needs and improve the living conditions of the inhabitants. Influence of urbanisation As mentioned before, local government is the product of the process of urbanisation. More people move from rural to urban areas for various reasons, causing two types of problems for municipal authorities. Problems experienced by rural municipalities: • They cannot develop as people are moving to the cities, depriving them of revenue which is necessary for development. • The people who stay behind will later also move to the cities to look for better opportunities as the rural municipality cannot provide the necessary goods and services.

20

Environment in which municipal authorities function

Problems experienced by urban municipalities: • People coming to cities cannot find houses and jobs. • This results in anti-social behaviour like crime, drunkenness, etc. • Urbanisation causes a lot of problems for the municipal authority who must provide services for these extra inhabitants. • The municipality must also aim to minimise unemployment, crime and health risks caused by squatting. • The situation must be monitored regularly by the municipality. Health Schedule 4B of the Constitution makes municipal health services a municipal function. • The provision of services such as water, refuse removal, sewerage and night soil removal is delegated from central to local government. • The Health Act stipulates that municipalities must provide preventative services such as family planning, care of the aged and health counselling. • Municipalities play a valuable role in the prevention of AIDS and tuberculosis. • Primary health services are also delegated to municipalities. Public facilities Municipalities must provide and maintain public facilities like parks, sports grounds, libraries, streets, public toilets, etc. • These facilities must be safe and not endanger the lives of the inhabitants. • All departments of the municipality must ensure the safety and welfare of the community, e.g. traffic (public transport), health, engineering (roads), etc. • Recreation facilities like sports grounds and libraries should be provided. • Proper and enough public facilities also improve the image of the city or town.

1.2.3 Economic factor
A municipality should not operate businesses and industries. Its function is to provide services to the private sector that will invest and start businesses and industries. Investment results in more jobs and more funds for development in a local authority. The economic environment in which a municipality functions, is influenced in the following ways: • People have needs and expectations which have to be satisfied with scarce resources (money) by the municipality. • Economic conditions on national and local level determine activities. • Government policy on local level is determined by the economic welfare of the state (national budget). • The resources (money) generated by the municipality determines the extent of services. • The correct role of the municipality in economic development is to attract investment in the municipality and can be called the 3F’s: – Find investors by creating the right conditions for investment. – Facilitate the acquisition of land, sub-division, approval of plans, provision of water and electricity, etc. – Foster the investor by continuous contact aimed at smoothing over difficulties and discussing problems. • Investors and industries contribute to the revenue of the municipality by paying rates, and for services. • The economic environment will influence municipal policies because policy can only be implemented if the necessary funds are available.

21

Module 3

1.2.4 Judicial factor
What is meant by a judicial entity? A judicial entity can be described as something which originates from the law (statute). An urbanised area is a statutory formation and can be regarded as a judicial entity. The Constitution (Act 108 of 1996) Section 151 deals with the “new deal” for local authorities, explained as follows: • The three spheres of government are interdependent and interrelated, but each has its separate existence. • A municipality is not, as previously, a “creation of statute”, but an integral part of the government of South Africa as entrenched in the Constitution. • The municipal council has the executive and legislative authority of the municipality vested in it, which makes it a legal entity. • Section 151(3) gives municipalities the right to govern on their own initiative in the manner which they consider appropriate for their community as provided for in the Constitution. • Section 151 (4) gives a municipality the right or ability to exercise its powers or perform its functions. It gives the municipality authority to govern subject to national and provincial legislation, as provided for in the Constitution. • If a municipality acts unconstitutionally or unlawfully or bankrupts itself, it cannot rely on Section 151(4) for protection. • Because a municipality is a legal entity it also has contractual and trading powers and can summons and be summonsed.

1.2.5 Political factor
All human beings have needs and not all have the same needs. Individual needs also differ from group needs and it is sometimes difficult to reconcile the individual self actualization with the interest of the group. • Municipalities have to satisfy the needs of the community, but do not always have the means (money) to satisfy all the needs. • All needs cannot be met simultaneously; therefore municipal councils must determine priorities. • If some demands and needs are met and others not, it can lead to unhappiness amongst the inhabitants and confrontation, with the authorities. • Decisions, which will lead to policy, are influenced by the following: – Position and status of the local authority in government – Composition of the municipal council – Existence and influence of interest and pressure groups – Demands and expectations of the community. • Municipalities’ powers are limited to what is spelled out in the Constitution, national acts and provincial ordinances. • The structure and compilation of municipal authorities and councils differ from one another according to the number of tax payers they serve.

22

Environment in which municipal authorities function

• The size of the municipality will also determine the complexity of services. • Nowadays councillors are elected on a political basis, whereas in the past, they were elected for what they could do for the inhabitants. • Groups with political interests (unions) are formed, putting pressure on councils to satisfy their political needs. • These groups use sit-ins, marches and rent boycotts to manipulate municipalities. • Even the workers of the municipalities are forced to take part in strikes and are intimidated if they want to go to work. • Municipalities also suffer damages to property, road signs and vehicles during protests, which can influence the quality of services.

1.3

Conclusion
Municipalities perform a very important role in their area of jurisdiction. When they provide services they have to take the environmental factors into account. Some factors will be more prominent in certain municipalities as not two local authorities are the same. Review questions 1. Various environmental factors affect local authorities in one way or another. Explain how the following physical environmental factors affect municipalities: 1.1 Geographical characteristics 1.2 Historical environment 2. Discuss the following social factors which have an influence on the services of municipal authorities: 2.1 Housing 2.2 Literacy, education and employment 2.3 Influence of urbanisation 3. Explain how the economic factor affects the way in which municipalities function and provide services. 4. Discuss how the political environment affects the way in which municipalities function.

(5x2) (5x2)

(5x2) (5x2) (5x2)

(10) (5x2)

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Module 3

24

Module 4

The structure of a local authority
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • Understand the structure of a local authority Explain the characteristics of municipal services Understand the classification of services and explain the services Discuss the powers of municipal authorities.

Module 4

1.
1.1

Services rendered by, and powers of, municipal authorities
Introduction
Municipal services are vital for the growth and development of a municipality. The Constitution, Sections 152 and 153, stipulate the objectives of local government and the services that need to be provided to the communities. The services to be rendered are set out in Section 156 Schedule 4 and 5 of the Constitution. The Municipal Act, which has been amended twice, has two definitions of municipal services. The first definition is that of basic municipal services which are necessary to ensure an acceptable and reasonable quality of life, and if not provided, would endanger public health, safety or the environment. The second definition is that of services that a municipality provides in terms of its powers and functions for the benefit of the local community. Such a service is either provided by the municipality itself or by an external mechanism, and fees or tariffs are levied in respect of such services. Municipal services must be accessible, be provided in an efficient and effective manner, be financially sustainable, be environmentally sustainable and be regularly reviewed and upgraded or improved if necessary. Services rendered by municipalities will differ according to the environmental factors affecting the municipality, the needs of the inhabitants and the financial resources available to provide the services.

1.2

Structure of a local authority
Council Committee Chief Executive Officer (Town Clerk)

HOD

HOD

HOD

HOD

HOD

HOD = Head of Department or Division The council, executive officer (Town Clerk or Municipal Manager) and the executive units (Departments) form the main structure of the municipality. The committees are additional and are established from members of the council to discuss policies. The Town Clerk / Municipal Manager is the Chief Executive and Administrative Officer in charge of the administration of the municipality

26

The structure of a local authority

The Municipal Systems Act specifies that a municipality must have an administration. If municipalities are to fulfil their constitutional mandate, they should have the means (funds) to provide sustainable services, to promote social and economic development, to promote a safe and healthy environment and to perform the functions as listed in the Constitution. There is no set model for the classification of local government services, because of the diversity between urban and rural areas. Below is a list of the departments of the City of Cape Town: • Community Services • Social Development and Early Childhood Development • Tourism, Events and Marketing • Economic, Environmental and Spatial Planning • Safety and Security • Health • Transport, Roads and Storm water • Human Settlements • Finance • Corporate Services • Utility Services A municipal council has to prioritise the needs of the community, declare its intentions and set specific objectives to satisfy these needs. It has to clearly indicate what it wants to achieve and ensure that the necessary funds are available to achieve the objectives. After setting objectives it has to formulate the policies so that the officials can execute the policies and render the necessary services.

1.3

Characteristics of services
When examining the services rendered by municipal authorities, we can identify a few distinct characteristics as follows: • Municipal authorities render services of a local nature, which explains why services differ from one municipality to another. • Municipal authorities fulfil an important role in promoting the welfare of the community. • Each service rendered influences every person living in that specific area. • Municipalities are not forced to render services. • Provincial authorities set broad guidelines for municipal services. • Municipalities are autonomous institutions on local government level. • Municipalities decide on the nature of services, scope and when they should be rendered. • Rendering of services is linked to the development of a municipality. • The need of the local inhabitants will determine what type of service to render. • Services will be rendered if the necessary funds are available. • The inhabitants of the specific municipality must pay for the services rendered by the municipality. • Services can only be rendered if the councillors are aware of the needs of the inhabitants whose responsibility it is to make their needs known.

1.4

Classification of services
The Constitution requires that municipalities provide services in a sustainable manner and that municipal administrations provide services impartially, fairly, equitably and without bias. The Municipal Systems Act place a responsibility on municipalities to give effect to the provisions of the

27

Module 4

Constitution by • providing in the basic needs of the community • promoting the development of the local community • ensuring that all members of the local community have access to the minimum basic municipal services. The Act also states that municipal services must be • equitable and accessible to all • provided in a manner that is effective and efficient • financially sustainable (affordable) • preserve the environment for future generations • regularly review and upgrade or improve services. The services which are rendered by most municipalities will be dealt with below.

1.4.1 Ambulance services
• The ambulance personnel are responsible for the transport of sick or injured patients, which is a delicate task. • They must have compassion for people because they are not only responsible for the welfare of the patient but also for moral support. • The victim of an accident is usually confused and feels helpless. • The patient urgently needs the support and help of ambulance personnel. • The ambulance personnel are well trained and equipped to transport patients to hospitals. • The patient or medical aid pays for the transport from the scene of the accident or their homes to the hospital • If anybody needs an ambulance the hospital or emergency services can be phoned and an ambulance will be send out. • Different types of ambulances are available and are equipped to handle specific cases, e.g. emergency rescue, paramedics, etc. • Every citizen should show respect towards ambulance services. • Motorists and pedestrians should make way for the ambulance because a delay could result in the death of the injured or sick person. Cremation offers a number of benefits for cities like Cape Town where cemetery space is in short supply. Not only is it affordable, but it also helps alleviate the on-going challenge around lack of burial space.

1.4.2 Cemeteries and crematoria
• As the in population in South Africa increases, so does the number of people who die, with the result thatmore space is needed for people to be buried. • All municipalities need a cemetery and it expands continually, which puts an extra burden on the municipality to provide more space. • When cemeteries expand, more people must be employed to maintain them, which results in higher costs. • In many towns and cities cemeteries are neglected. • A disadvantage of cemeteries is that fertile soil is used to bury people.

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The structure of a local authority

• To eliminate this disadvantage and to escape the rising costs for the maintenance of cemeteries, cremation of the dead is increasing. • It is expensive to build a crematorium and that’s why it is only found in bigger cities and towns.

1.4.3 Electricity
• Electricity forms part of the infrastructure of many homes and when there is a power failure, people are very upset. • People are very dependent on electricity. • In the old days municipalities generated their own electricity. • Since the establishment of ESCOM (Electricity Supply Commission) most municipal authorities buy electricity in bulk from ESCOM and resell it to residents. • Electricity provision is an expensive undertaking which involves the building of power stations, construction of towers, laying of cables and repairing of cables. • Municipal authorities make a profit on the sale of electricity, but also lose a lot of money if people do not pay their electricity bills. • To monitor consumption, meters are installed at each house. • Personnel take meter readings every second month to prepare bills. • A new method is to buy electricity cards which are inserted into the electrical box at home. • Each card contains a number of units which can be used, and if the units are finished, the owner can reload electricity on the card at various businesses or through the Internet.

1.4.4 Environmental pollution
Everyone has the right to an environment that is not harmful to his/her health or well-being and to have the environment protected for the benefit of the present and the future generations. Therefore we note the following: • The municipality is responsible to promote a safe and healthy environment, by preventing pollution and economic degradation. • The conservation of the environment was entrusted to specific state departments and local authorities. • Different acts of Parliament have been passed in order to provide a safe and healthy environment and conserve the environment. • Municipal authorities have appointed qualified personnel to implement the provisions of the Acts e.g. health inspectors. • The municipality must act in such a way that it sets an example to the citizens on how to treat the local environment. • The municipality should impose fines if people persist in polluting the environment. • Pollution can also be prevented by educating inhabitants on how to keep the environment clean and free from pollution and litter.

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Module 4

1.4.5 Health services
Our purpose is to maintain and improve the health of all communities in the City of Cape Town through a District Health System that includes: • Promotive health services • Preventive health services • Appropriate curative health services • Environmental health services • Specialised health support services The City has made HIV/AIDS & TB one of its priorities and we are committed to effectively tackling this pandemic. We are dedicated to equity and a developmental multi-sectoral approach where we work with other sectors to meet the overall health needs of communities – especially the poor. Everyone has the right to have access to health care services and municipal authorities are best placed to provide community and environmental health services. The Health Act (Act 63 of 1977) stipulates the following: • Municipal authorities must provide – specific health services such as the prevention of the spread of contagious diseases – health inspection services and to – family planning services. • In order to provide these services specialised personnel must be appointed, e.g. medical health officers, health inspectors and nurses. • If the municipality fails to provide the prescribed services, the Minister of Health can relieve them of this service. • The Department of Health can then provide these services and recover the cost from the relevant municipality. Health services can be divided into personal services and environmental services. Personal health • All health services are rendered by nursing staff. • They have to help and advise people on health issues, e.g. family planning, TB, immunisation, and provide post natal care. • They must make sure people suffering from diseases like TB, complete the full course of treatment so as not to expose others to the disease. • It is sometimes difficult to treat people in areas like squatter camps as the people move from one place to another. Environmental health • It is the responsibility of health inspectors to inform the public about pollution of food, air and water. • Health inspectors inspect business premises when the owner applies for a business licence. • Often owners neglect the health and safety measures after the licence has been granted. • They also have to inspect restaurants and any place where food is prepared to ensure health measures. • Health inspectors must regularly inspect businesses and restaurants and make sure health and safety measures are applied.

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The structure of a local authority

1.4.6 Housing
A section of the Housing Act 107 of 1997 stipulates the duty of on municipalities with regard to housing. Every municipality must, as part of the municipality’s process of integrated development planning, take all reasonable and necessary steps within the framework of national and provincial housing legislation and policy to • ensure that inhabitants of its area of jurisdiction have access to adequate housing from arising • conditions that are not healthy and safe for the inhabitants in its area of jurisdiction revented or remove such condition • services in an economically efficient manner in respect of water, sanitation, electricity, roads, storm water drainage and transport. • set housing delivery goals in respect of its area of jurisdiction • identify and designate land for housing development • promote the resolution of conflicts arising in the housing development process • initiate, plan, co-ordinate, facilitate, promote and enable housing development in its area of jurisdiction • plan and manage land use and development. Municipalities have houses and flats that they rent out to inhabitants. One of the biggest problems they are facing is to determine to whom the houses must be allocated. The following process is normally followed: • Names are usually put on a waiting list • When a house becomes available, it is allocated to the person whose name appears on the top of the list The moment people move into the house a second problem arises: • The collecting of rent can be very complicated and sensitive. • If people do not pay, discussions take place between the municipality and the tenant to determine the reason for not paying. • Reasons for not paying vary from neglecting to pay to a shortage of the necessary funds. • If a person cannot pay the rent, solutions must be found. • When a tenant signs a rental contract with the municipality he pays a deposit equal to one month’s rent. • When the contract is terminated, this deposit is used to repair any damages. • The balance or full deposit is then paid to the tenant. • The municipal authority must ensure that the tenant does not let certain rooms to other people as it is against the rules to rent rooms to generate income. • Overcrowding must also not be allowed on the premises. • Inspectors have to regularly visit the rented properties. • If defects are found, they must be repaired and the tenant is held liable for the damages. These service points not only lend books to residents but also provide them with access to electronic resources, magazines and journals, programmes in information-retrieval skills, lifelong learning and storytelling. In addition, city libraries function as cultural hubs and venues for community activities and events.

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Module 4

1.4.7 Library services
• A library is a collection of books, magazines, paintings and DVD’s. • It is a place where people meet, read books and study. • Anybody can make use of the facilities of the library by registering. • On registration, the member gets a library card which is used when books, magazines or DVD’s are taken out of the library. • Books can be kept for two weeks before they have to be returned. • If a person returns the books late, a fine will be imposed. • A library makes provision for the exchanging of ideas. • An atmosphere must be created where people can relax and search for the books they need. • A variety of literature is provided and chairs and tables are available to use for reading or doing research.

1.4.8 Licences
Motor vehicle licences Municipal authorities are required by Provincial Ordinances to award licences to inhabitants. There are over a million vehicles currently registered on the Electronic National Traffic Information System (eNaTIS) (ITP, 2009), which is the official register for all vehicle, driving licence, contravention and accident data.

• • • • •

They undertake the registration and licensing of motor vehicles. They also issue roadworthy certificates for licensing vehicles. Licences are awarded after drivers have been tested by traffic officials. Income is generated by rendering these services. Part of the amounts collected is paid to municipal authorities.

Business licences • Municipal authorities are involved in the licensing of commercial undertakings. • Ordinances authorise municipalities to exercise control functions associated with the licensing of businesses. • Municipalities are entrusted with the control function as they are responsible for rendering health services and must see that the premises do not create a health hazard. • They issue control certificates which are essential for an applicant to have before a licence will be issued by the Receiver of Revenue. • Healthinspectors inspect business premises and can take action against any individual who does not comply with the regulations. • The granting or refusal of a business licence is important because the rights of individuals and the well-being of the community are at stake. • Municipalities make use of a licence committee (consisting of council members) to deal with licences.

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The structure of a local authority

1.4.9

Parks and sports grounds
• Municipalities have to make provision for parks and sports grounds when they plan their cities and towns. • Residential plots are not big enough to satisfy the physical recreation needs of the people. • These recreational areas are expensive to establish and maintain and therefore parks are not very big. • Money should not be wasted on establishing facilities that will be used by only a few people. • Beautiful gardens and trees can create an atmosphere of friendliness which can attract people to the city or town. • Children love to play in parks while other people love to walk in parks. • Sports grounds are necessary as a place where people can get exercise, and where they can participate in sports against other teams. • Some municipalities have established indoor sport centres where basically any sport can be offered. • It is the duty of the municipality to ensure that these facilities are used properly and that control is exercised over the behaviour of the users, e.g. swimming pools. • A lot of soccer stadiums were built for the 2010 Soccer World Cup, which is putting a lot of financial strain on the municipalities. These stadiums are also used for other purposes, e.g. concerts to generate money.

1.4.10 Rubbish and night-soil removal
Rubbish and night-soil removal is one of the essential services of a municipality. • If garbage is allowed to pile up, it is unhygienic and can cause a health hazard for the citizens. • In an emergency situation e.g. floods, the first task is to remove rubbish and rubble for health and safety reasons. • Nowadays the removal of refuse is done with specialised trucks. • In cities the inhabitants put their garbage in special rubbish bins which are lifted electronically and dumped into the trucks. • Smaller municipalities still pick up garbage bags from houses. • Garbage is collected on specific days in specific areas. • A lot of municipalities are making use of recycling techniques. • Inhabitants are motivated to put all plastic, glass and paper in separate recycle bins which are collected. • The City of Cape Town has built a new waste management facility where waste is recycled. • The removal of night-soil also went through different stages. • In the old days a bucket system was used but as towns expanded, and technology developed, new methods were implemented. • Smaller towns use water-borne sewerage systems as well as chemical toilets and pit latrines in rural areas.

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Module 4

1.4.11 Town and city planning
Town and city planning is probably one of the most interesting and rewarding tasks of a municipal authority. • Future needs of the community must be identified and plans to satisfy these needs must be worked out. • It must be taken into account that the needs that exist at present, won’t be the same needs to satisfy in fifty years from now. • It is the function of the Town Planning department to decide where future industrial areas, residential areas, recreation areas, churches, schools, shopping centres, etc. will develop. • When a town is founded, surveying of land into the above-mentioned areas must be done systematically. • The way it should be done is spelt out in parliamentary legislation and provincial ordinances. • Legislation requires that each town and city should have a planning scheme. • Town planners are appointed to perform this task and the municipality can also appoint surveyors. • Smaller towns do not require these personnel full time and make use of private consultants to assist them with the planning of their town. • Town and city planning is nowadays linked with regional planning. • Team-work is needed by the planning institutions on all three levels of government i.e. central, provincial and local.

1.4.12 Water provision
Planning and Building Development Management of the City of Cape Town As part of these functions, the department facilitates and processes development applications (such as building plans and applications for rezoning and subdivision of land) and monitors their implementation. These functions are controlled and directed by various national and local laws. The department also assists with local environmental impact management and the implementation of forward spatial planning policies (long term development planning in line with statutory and local requirements). Water forms a very important part of ordinary life. • When a town is founded, rivers, fountains, streams or boreholes initially provide enough water for the inhabitants. • If the population increases, communal water supply schemes are necessary. • The municipality doesn’t only have to supply water, but also needs to prevent diseases. • A reticulation system, reservoirs and purification works become essential, and the necessary funds must be obtained to establish them. • Government issues directives on water.

34

The structure of a local authority

• The Water Act prescribes the requirements to be met when constructing water schemes and makes provision for subsidies from government. • Sometimes water is supplied in bulk to metropolitan areas. • Individual municipalities provide for the construction of reservoirs and reticulation systems to supply and sell water to the consumers. • Water delivered by municipal authorities must be suitable for drinking and washing purposes. • To determine the consumption of inhabitants, people are appointed by municipalities to take readings of metres installed. • These readings are used to prepare water bills. Electricity and water are reflected together on the account.

1.5

Powers of municipal authorities
The Constitution (Act 108 of 1996) and the Municipal Systems Act of 2000 set out the powers and functions assigned to municipal authorities to provide services and to promote the well-being of the inhabitants within the specific areas. Legislation from provincial government lists the functions and powers which could be undertaken by municipal authorities. A municipality is not compelled to undertake all the activities and provincial governments also don’t set standards to be complied with, should municipalities decide to carry out the activities. This is why municipalities can function autonomously and this also makes them different from the regional offices of provincial and central executive institutions. The following powers have been granted to municipal authorities: • They can make by-laws for the area of jurisdiction of the municipality, providing that it is not against the constitution of higher legislation. • They must exercise control over the town/city and ensure that all services are carried out effectively. • They can render services with permission from higher authorities. • They can levy taxes within prescribed limits. • They can determine tariffs for the rendering of services. • They can appoint or dismiss officials within their municipality. • They can enter into contracts. • They can raise loans in order to render services.

1.6

Conclusion
A detailed list of services rendered by municipal authorities has been discussed above. As the population increases and cities and towns develop, more services are needed. Municipalities can only provide services as set out in legislation, and if they have the necessary funds to provide the services. Local authorities are autonomous bodies and can decide for themselves which services they will render, depending on the availability of resources.

35

Module 4

36

Module 5

Levels of government
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • • • • Understand the levels of government Explain the relations between local authorities and central government Understand the role of Parliament in local government Understand the role of the State President in local government Understand the role of Cabinet in local government Explain the relationship between local authorities and provincial government Explain the relationship and co-operation with other local authorities.

Module 5

1.
1.1

Relations between municipal authorities and between municipalities and other levels of the hierarchy
Introduction
The Constitution has established three levels of government which are distinctive (separate from one another), interdependent and interrelated (Section 40). The Constitution also requires that all three levels of government must conduct their activities with the principles of co-operative government and intergovernmental relations in providing a service to the citizens of the country. The Intergovernmental Relations Framework Act 13 of 2005 also lays down principles and provides a framework for the national, provincial and local governments and all organs of state within those governments to facilitate co-ordination in the implementation of policy and legislation. Local government is important because it is the sphere of government closest to the citizens of South Africa and is constitutionally responsible for providing services without which citizens cannot live. Local government can however not function without the higher authorities as all municipal functions are authorised by central legislation or provincial ordinances and some activities are also funded by higher authorities. This means that municipal authorities must be in contact with higher authorities and maintain good relations. Central and provincial authorities often have local offices within the boundaries of the municipalities, which requires them to work together on a regular basis. The relations between the three spheres of government will be discussed below.

1.2

Levels of government
The three levels of public institutions, central, provincial and local, were established by the Constitution (Section 40) to carry out all the functions which must be performed in order to provide services to the population. Legislative, executive and administrative functions are carried out on all three levels of government to provide the necessary services.

Central government Relations between central provincial and local government

Provincial government

Local government

38

Levels of government

South Africa is a big country with a large population. To facilitate government with the administration of the state the geographical area is divided into smaller parts. Before 1994 South Africa was divided into four provinces and ten TBVC states (black homelands). With the new Constitution (Act 108 of 1996) the country was divided into nine provinces including the TBVC states. The provinces consist of urban areas, towns and cities and rural areas consisting of farms. This division of the state into geographical areas necessitates the creation of institutions to administer and govern the state. The state is divided into three levels of government: central, provincial and local government. The nine provinces are each divided into local or municipal authorities. There will always be a relationship between theses three levels of government because the local authority, although an autonomous body, needs authorisation from higher authorities to perform its functions.

Provinces of South Africa

Municipalities in Gauteng

1.3

Relations between local authorities and central government institutions
In Chapter 3 of the Constitution the principles of co-operative government and intergovernmental relations are set out. Chapter 3 requires that the different spheres of government must co-operate with one another to ensure the implementation of legislation in which they have a common interest. The South African government system is not a federation of cities and provinces but a unitary state in which central government is the supreme legislative and executive body, and local government plays a significant role in providing services to the citizens of the country. Functions and authority among the three levels of government are distributed as follows: • Central government delegates certain functions and authorities to the provincial government. • The provincial government then delegates certain of these functions and authority statutorily (through provincial ordinances) to local authorities. • Local authorities are then authorised to make by-laws to carry out the functions delegated to them. The Constitution requires that Parliament enact legislation to establish and provide for structures and institutions to promote and facilitate intergovernmental relations as well as to provide for mechanisms to settle disputes between the different spheres. The Intergovernmental Relations Framework Act 13 of 2005 was established in this regard. 39

Module 5

The object of Act 13 of 2005 is to provide within the principle of co-operative government a framework for the national, provincial and local governments, and all organs of state within those governments, to facilitate co-ordination in the implementation of policy and legislation including: • coherent government • the effective provision of services • the monitoring of the implementation of policy and legislation • the realisation of national priorities. The role and relationship of the higher authorities with local authorities will be discussed below.

1.3.1 The role of Parliament
• Parliament (central government) makes laws on issues that affect the functioning of municipalities, e.g. laws on housing, roads, air pollution, water, electricity, etc. • Municipal authorities are not totally autonomous, only within the scope of legislative provisions. This means that they can make autonomous by-laws on the issues delegated to them through higher legislation. • Municipal authorities are an integral part of the political and administrative processes with which the country is governed and administered. • The relationship between municipal authorities and central government is not only a relationship where control is exercised by central over municipal institutions. • The central and municipal institutions are dependent on each other and a relationship of cooperation and not competition should be maintained. • The only time control needed is where central institutions have to carry out directing and supervisory functions to ensure that the minimum standards are maintained by municipal authorities.

1.3.2 Role of the State President
• The State President is the head of the state and acts on advice of the executive authority (Cabinet). • The State President must sign all bills of Parliament before they become legislation and therefore approves authorities and functions for local authorities. • The State President appoints ministers and deputy ministers and will appoint the minister dealing with local government.

1.3.3 Role of Cabinet
• Cabinet consists of the president, deputy president and ministers who are the leaders and prominent members of political parties. • Ministers are charged with the administration of state departments, and the powers in regard to state corporations, agricultural control boards and research institutions (executive function). • Cabinet is the power centre of government and administration of the state as it must ensure that legislation of Parliament is carried out (executed). • A minister of Cabinet decides which proposals, bills and budget proposals will be submitted to Parliament. • The nature and extent of work programmes and activities of state institutions rest with the minister and Cabinet and therefore the functions of provincial and local authorities are also influenced by the proposals submitted by Cabinet.

40

Levels of government

To summarise: legislative authority is vested in Parliament and, to carry out the delegated functions, municipal authorities have to be in contact with the minister of Cabinet entrusted with local government. Central and local government work together in areas of finance, health, housing, electricity, transport, planning, tourism, sport, labour and recreation, to name a few, and thus a co-operative relationship between these two government bodies is essential.

1.4

The relationship between local authorities and provincial government institutions
In each of the nine provinces an executive council is formed with the Premier of the province as head. The executive council has authority, as set out by the Constitution (Act 108 of 1996), to approve provincial ordinances (provincial laws) which give local government authority to act. The Intergovernmental Relations Framework Act 13 of 2005 requires, on provincial level, a Premier’s intergovernmental forum, of which the Premier, MEC’s and mayors of district and metropolitan municipalities must be members. The Premier is the chairperson and the role of the Premier’s forum is that of a consultative body for the Premier and the local governments in the province. The Premier is closely associated with the activities in local authorities and the role the Premier plays in the local government system is as follows: • The Premier may advise a municipal authority to follow a particular line of action or to act in a specific manner. • The Premier can use his/her influence to restrain or stop a municipal authority from doing something that is not in the interests of the local residents. • The Premier can intervene in municipal affairs if they get out of hand. • The Premier has extensive powers and, if the Premier goes beyond the powers authorised to him/ her by law, will act unconstitutionally. • The Premier influences the shaping of municipal policy because the Premier’s approval is required for many municipal activities. • The Premier makes sure that municipal policy stays within the parameters of national policy and the Constitution. • When the Premier’s approval is required, he can give advice on the course of action the municipality should take • The Premier can also impose conditions on the municipality when approving activities. • The Premier can restrain a municipality from hasty action by withholding his/her approval. • The Premier can also stimulate action by putting pressure on the municipality. A local authority cannot undertake any activity before it hasobtained approval from the respective Provincial authority. Authorisation is obtained through provincial ordinances. The municipal authority is therefore subordinate to the Provincial Executive Council which lays down the work programmes through ordinances.

1.5

Relations and co-operation among other local authorities
Local authorities realised that it would be to their advantage to unite and work together to protect their mutual interests. They also realised that their activities are affected by provisions of parliamentary laws and provincial ordinances. To protect their interests the local authorities formed their own association.

41

Module 5

Sections 24 to 27 of Act 13 of 2005 deal with district intergovernmental forums. For every district municipality there must be a district intergovernmental forum to promote and facilitate intergovernmental relations between the district municipality and the local municipalities. The forum consists of the mayors of the municipalities, or councillor designated by them. The role of the district forum is to serve as a consultative forum for the local authorities to discuss and consult one another on matters of mutual interest, including: • draft national and provincial policy and legislation relating to matters affecting the local government interests • the implementation of national and provincial policy and legislation with respect to such matters • matters arising from the Premier’s forum which affect the local authorities • mutual support and the provision of services in the district together with planning and development in the district • the co-ordination and alignment of the strategic and performance plans and priorities, objectives and strategies of the municipalities in the district • any other matters of strategic importance which affect the interests of the municipalities in the district. Act 13 of 2005 also allows two or more municipalities to establish an inter-municipality forum to serve as a consultative forum for the participating municipalities to discuss and consult one another on matters of mutual interest.

1.6

Conclusion
In the past, intergovernmental relations between the different levels of government was more a matter of hope than of constitutional fact. The Constitution, Act 108 of 1996, changed this. Chapter 3 deals with the principles of co-operative government and intergovernmental relations. As discussed above, national legislation was promulgated to establish forums on the different levels for intergovernmental relations. The Constitution also requires that all organs of state must make every reasonable effort to avoid intergovernmental disputes and to settle intergovernmental disputes without resorting to judicial proceedings. If disputes do happen, the procedures on how to deal with them are also laid down in legislation.

Review questions 1. Discuss how the functions and authority are distributed among the three levels of government. 2. Parliament makes numerous laws on matters which affect the functioning of the local authority e.g. laws on electricity, roads, etc. 2.1 Describe the role of Parliament in Local Authority. 2.2 Explain the role of Cabinet in Local Authority. 3. In each province an executive council is established according to the constitution. The Premier of the province is the head of each province. Discuss the role of the Premier in municipalities.

42

Module 6

Who has a right to vote or qualify as voter
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • • • Understand who has a right to vote or qualify as voter; Understand who is disqualified to vote; Explain the procedure to prepare a voter’s roll; Understand how wards are divided; Explain the election preparation and procedure; Discuss party politics and its advantages and disadvantages.

Module 6

1.
1.1

Municipal Elections
Introduction
Residents in a municipal area cannot decide individually about a matter, and therefore representatives are elected to make decisions on their behalf in the municipal council. Residents must register as voters and then have the opportunity to select representatives through local elections. Representation is not the perfect way to satisfy all the needs of the community, but it is not possible for all inhabitants to meet to make decisions. By voting for a representative the voter gets the opportunity to voice his opinion on local matters. The elected representatives get a mandate from the voters to deliberate with other representatives on legislation to organise community life and provide services to satisfy needs and approve the budget which is needed to implement decisions. Regular elections (every four years) will give the voter the opportunity to replace representatives (councillors) who did not represent his/her ward properly. If a councillor die or resign an interim election, for that ward only, will be held to elect another councillor. In the paragraphs that follow the municipal election process will be discussed.

1.2

Right to vote (voter qualifications)
Previously only people who owned property in a municipal district were eligible to vote during municipal elections. This requirement was changed in the Interim Constitution of 1993 and the following people can vote in municipal elections: • • • • • • • A natural person which means an individual and not a corporate or business; South African citizen; Minimum age of 18; In possession of valid identity document; Registered to vote on the municipal voter’s roll; Resident in the area of jurisdiction; Not subject to any disqualifications (this will be discussed below)

A resident can only vote once for a municipal government but can vote in two different municipal areas if he/she own property in both areas. A voter whose residence has changed must apply to have that change recorded in the voters roll or be deregistered as voter.

1.2.1 Disqualifications to vote
• • • • • • Has fraudulently applied for registration in the prescribed manner; is not a South African citizen; has been declared by a High Court to be of unsound mind or mentally disordered; detained under the Mental Health Act 18 of 1973; detained under the Prevention and Treatment of Drug Dependency Act 1992. not a resident in the voting district where that person has applied to register.

44

Who has a right to vote or qualify as voter

“The national common voters’ roll compiled and maintained in terms of the Electoral Act must be used for municipal elections. A municipality’s segment of the voters’ roll consists of the segments of the voters’ roll for the voting district falling within the municipality.” Municipal Electoral Act 27 of 2000.

1.3

Voter’s roll
A voters’ roll is a list of names of all the residents who registered to vote. The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) specifies the format and details to be entered on the voters’ roll. Before an election can take place, it is the function of the Chief Electoral Officer to compile a voters’ roll.

1.3.1. Procedure to prepare a voters’ roll
• • • • • • • • • • A specific time period is specified to prepare the voters’ roll. A specific person (employee of the local authority) is appointed to prepare the voters’ roll. Forms are available for residents to register if they qualify. After the expiring date a list is compiled which contains the following information; • A serial number • Identity number • Alphabetical list of surnames and full names • Residential address of the voter. The voters’ roll is divided into parts according to the wards of the municipality. After the preliminary voters’ roll has been prepared, it must be advertised in the local newspaper. It is open for inspection at the IEC offices for a certain period. During the inspection period, any person can request to be included on the voters’ roll or object against a name appearing on the voters’ roll. These requests or objections must be in writing. After the inspection the IEC decide on objections received and request received which could be for or against the inclusion of a name or on the correctness of a person’s details. After the hearings the Chief Electoral Officer must complete the compilation of the voters’ roll and publish it. • This voters’ roll is now ready and used on the day of elections to control voting.

1.4

Electoral wards
The Constitution requires that wards be determined for each local authority. A ward is the boundary of area within which voters may cast their votes. The Demarcation Board, an independent authority, required by the Constitution, receives its authority to determine wards from the Municipal Structures Act. When deciding on the number of wards the following criteria can be used: • The number of councillors must be determined before wards can be allocated; • The number of registered voters in an area; • Topographical and physical characteristics of the area; • The availability and location of suitable places for voting and counting; • The density of the population – greater density – more voting stations; • Safety and security of voters and election material.

45

Module 6

After the wards have been allocated and how many representatives must be elected, the election can take place.

1.5

Elections

A municipal authority must be elected democratically according to the Constitution and Municipal Electoral Act 27 of 2000 at intervals of not less than three years and not more than five years.

Local government elections in South Africa takes place every four years.

1.5.1 Activities prior to election day
In order to have an orderly election, the following requirements are needed: Election timetable When the election has been called (date for election set), the IEC must compile a timetable setting out the process to be followed. The timetable must be printed in the Provincial Gazette. IEC local representative The IEC appoint an employee of the municipality to be their representative who is known as the Municipal Electoral Officer. The Municipal Electoral Officer will be responsible for the administration, organisation, supervision and conduct of the election for his/her municipal authority as laid out in the Municipal Electoral Act, under the Chief Electoral Officer (IEC official). Voters’ roll The Municipal Electoral Officer must ensure that the voters’ role is brought up to date before the day of the election. Parties contesting the election Political parties who want to contest the municipal election must be registered by the Chief Electoral Officer for a particular municipality by: • Giving notice of its intention to contest the election; • Submitting a list of candidates for the election; • Nominating ward candidates to stand for the party in a ward and • Paying a deposit as determined by the IEC to the IEC. Nomination of ward candidates A ward candidate could be a member of a political party registered for the election or an independent candidate. A candidate contesting the municipal election must: • be an ordinary resident in the municipality in which the ward falls; • be registered on the municipalities voters’ roll; • submit nomination on the prescribed form to the IEC on or before date set out in election timetable; • sign an acceptance of nomination for the ward nominated for; • submit a certified page with photo, name and identity number; • Submit at least 50 signatures of voters who appear on the voters’ roll if he / she are contesting as an independent candidate. 46

Who has a right to vote or qualify as voter

The IEC must: • compile a list of candidates contesting the wards for each ward to be contested; • certify those lists for that specific election; • keep copies of the lists available at the office of the IEC’s local representative and • Issue to each candidate a certificate.

Activity 2 Go to the website of the municipality in your area and find the councillor who represents the ward where you live. List the name of the ward and the details of the councillor (ward representative). Establishment of voting stations Suitable venues which will serve as voting stations must be identified. When determining voting stations the IEC must take into account: • anything that could affect the free, fair and orderly conduct of the election for example an area exposed to attacks; • population density (how many people live in the area); • the need to avoid congestion at the voting station e.g. inadequate parking facilities or poor design of venue which hinder free flow of voters from door to officials to voting compartments. The IEC must give notice that copies of voting stations are available for inspection at the office of the local representative. If necessary for a free and fair election, the IEC may relocate a voting station. Ballot papers The IEC determines the design of the ballot papers to be used in an election and ensure that ballot papers are printed and delivered in the correct form and number to the correct voting station. Strict security in the printing, transport, delivery and storage of ballot papers is of utmost importance. The names of parties or candidates appear in alphabetical order on the ballot paper. Ballot papers are bound into books or blocks and the counterfoils contain a serial number for control purposes. Ballot boxes The IEC is responsible for the design, construction and numbering of the ballot boxes. It must be designed in such a way that it can be securely closed after the elections. In the past ballot boxes was made of steel, which is expensive and difficult to handle. Modern ballot boxes are made of cardboard. Voting compartments (voting booths) The IEC is responsible for the design, construction and delivery of the voting compartments. Three sides of the voting compartment are closed and one side open where the voter enters and make his mark / vote. Voting materials The IEC is responsible for providing every voting station with the following voting materials: • ballot papers; • ballot boxes; • voting compartments; 47

Module 6 • • • • certified segment of the voters’ roll for that voting district; stationary; furniture and An official mark to be stamped on the back of the ballot papers.

Appointment of presiding officers A presiding officer and deputy presiding officer are appointed by the IEC for every voting station. The presiding officer or deputy presiding officer has to: • manage, co-ordinate and supervise the voting at the voting station; • take all necessary steps to ensure orderly conduct at voting station; • order, if needed security to assist in ensuring orderly conduct; • Exercise any other duty imposed by the Act. • Appointment of voting officers The IEC also appoints voting officers who assist the presiding officer with duties on election day e.g. checking voters’ roll and ID’s, handing out ballot papers, etc. Appointment of counting officers and counters At each voting station a counting officer and deputy counting officer is appointed by the IEC whose duties are the managing, supervision and counting of votes. A counter is a person who helps the counting officer with the counting of voters. Appointment of agents An agent is a person appointed by a political party or by an independent ward candidate who may observe the proceedings concerning voting, counting and declaration of results. An agent may not interfere with the proceedings but may lodge an objection, if alleged irregularities are suspected, to the presiding officer or counting officer. Observers An organisation may apply to the IEC to be an observer at an election who will only observe and be present at the election proceedings.

1.5.2 Election day
If everything was prepared and organised as stated above before election day, everything should run smoothly and orderly on election day. All the role players will have their duties to perform and if everybody do what is expected from them the elections process should run successfully. On the day of the election the following aspects is dealt with: Voting times The hours prescribe in legislation for voting is from 7:00 till 21:00. The IEC may change the hours, but have to make the changed voting times widely known. No-one may be allowed in a voting station after it was closed. To ensure a free and fair election the IEC may temporarily close a voting station for part of election day or it may extend the hours till midnight on election day if necessary.

48

Who has a right to vote or qualify as voter

Opening of voting stations Before opening at 7:00 the presiding officer at each voting station must: • Show the agents and candidates present that each ballot box is empty; • Seal the ballot box with a seal designed by the IEC; • Close and secure all openings of the ballot box except the opening through which the ballot papers are inserted by the voters. Duties of officials at voting stations • ensure that ballot boxes are sealed before opening voting station; • ensure that required furniture and stationary are available; • ensure that layout of voting station is effective; • open and close voting station at the prescribed times; • ensure that the voters vote in secret in the voting compartments; • verify the registration of the voter on the voters role; • issue ballot papers and keep record of it; • keep order at the voting station; • seal the boxes after closure of the voting station; • deliver the ballot boxes and election material to the presiding officer.

Voting procedure A voter may vote once at the voting station where that voter is registered. The procedure is as follows: • The voter produces his/her identity document to an electoral officer. • The official will verify the voter on the voters’ roll and check if the voter’s is the person in the identity document.

49

Module 6

• • • • • • •

The voter’s name is marked in the voters’ roll as proof of voting. The voter’s left thumb and nail is marked with ink. The back of the ballot paper is marked with the official election stamp. The ballot paper is handed to the voter. The voter vote in a voting compartment in secret. The voter folds the ballot paper and put it in the ballot box. Voter exits the voting station.

Closing of voting station The voting stations doors will close at 21:00 if not extended by the IEC. Voters who entered the voting station before 21:00 can finish their voting procedure. The presiding officer will then close the opening, through which ballot papers were inserted of the ballot box, using a seal provided by the IEC. Other ballot boxes would have been sealed in this way as they have been filled up during the day. All unused boxes must also be sealed by the end of the voting day. After boxes were sealed the presiding officer must do the following: • Complete a ballot paper statement reflecting the number of: • ballot boxes issued; • used ballot boxes; • unused ballot boxes; • ballot papers issued; • ballot papers not issued / unused ballot papers; • cancelled ballot papers. • Seal in separate containers: • the certified segments of the voters’ roll provided; • the unused ballot papers; • any cancelled ballot papers; • the written record of objections concerning voting; • allow agents to affix their seals to those containers.

Counting of votes and announcement of results In the past votes were counted at central point by nowadays votes are counted at voting stations. This is safer than transporting the ballot boxes to a central point, but it requires expert officials to do the job. The IEC can also identify a venue for counting votes in cases of mobile voting stations. The presiding officer may also be the counting officer. The procedure for counting votes is as follows: • Verification of the sealed boxes and other material; • The presiding officer with agents, candidates and observers must examine seals of ballot boxes to ensure that there was no tampering; • Sealed boxes are opened and verified with presiding officer’s form; • Ballot papers are sorted and spoilt papers and papers without the official mark are removed; • Ballot papers are sorted into bundles of 50 or 100, face down so that votes cannot be seen and back is checked for the official mark; • The bundles are totalled and checked against the totals in the presiding officer’s ballot paper statement; • The actual count is done by teams who turn ballot papers face up and sort them into bundles of 50 or 100 for each party or ward candidate. • After the counting has been completed, the presiding officer will inspect the doubtful ballot papers and decide to accept or reject them.

50

Who has a right to vote or qualify as voter

Once counting is completed, and the presiding officer is satisfied with the counting process, he/she will submit the results to the IEC. The IEC may have to investigate alleged irregularities by electoral or counting officials. The declaration of results will be made by the IEC within seven days of an election.

1.6

Party Politics
The role of political parties in municipal elections is often questioned. Voters vote for a candidate and not for a political party even though candidates represent political party, independent candidates, who do not represent a political party, can also stand in municipal elections. We can argue that political parties do not play a role in municipal elections, but municipalities is part of South Africa as a whole and cannot be separated from national and provincial legislation. Till 1988 political parties did not play a very big role in municipal elections but in 1988 political parties openly contested seats in the elections. The involvement of political parties in municipal elections has both advantages and disadvantages.

1.6.1 Advantages of political party involvement in municipal elections
• The percentage poll for municipal elections is normally very low and parties could encourage more voters to vote in the election. • Political parties can play a role in the formulation of policies on municipal affairs to bring about change in the municipal administration and government. • Political parties can discipline the candidates if they belong to a specific party. • Political parties help candidates who do not have the financial means to contest an election to take part. • As candidates are nominated by political parties and bound by the election manifest, the voter or tax payer can call the municipality to account. • Political parties will prevent candidates to promote their own interests.

1.6.2 Disadvantages of political party involvement in municipal elections
• Political party participation can exclude candidates who do not belong to a specific political party. • Municipalities get involved in the broader political scheme when elections are contested on a party political basis. • A candidate with great potential to become a good councillor can be excluded if they do not belong to a political party. • Party political interests can be seen as more important than the interests of the residents of the ward that he / she are representing. • If the opposition party on municipal level is the ruling party on national level, it can happen that higher authorities want to intervene on municipal level. • If more than two political parties are represented in the Council and the ruling party only have a slight majority, a minority party can rule the town or city because it can side with any of the bigger parties in the council. • The best possible candidate, who will serve the interest of the voters best, is not always elected if he does not belong to a political party.

51

Module 6

Activity 3 Go to the website of the municipality in your area and identify all political parties that contested the last local election and which parties are represented on the council.

1.7

Conclusion
All inhabitants of municipalities have a right according the Constitution (Act 108 of 1996) to elect their municipal representatives. Local level is the closest level to the citizens and is the place where they can take part in municipal government and administration. Inhabitants in an area are directly affected by the decisions of the Municipal Council and they must deep the municipal authority accountable and take part in elections. If they do not it may happen that candidates are elected who might serve their own or party interests rather than the interests of the residents in the municipality.

Review Questions 1. Residents in a municipal area choose, through voting, representatives (councillors) to represent them on the Municipal Council. Explain the following with regard to the voting procedure: 1.1 Who qualify to vote in local elections? 1.2 How can a person be disqualified to vote? 1.3 Discuss the procedure for preparing a Voter’s Roll. 2. Explain the criteria used to determine the how the number of wards for a municipal election. 3. A ward candidate could be a member of a political party registered for the election or an independent candidate. 3.1 Discuss the procedure political parties must follow to contest the local elections. 3.2 Explain what a candidate must do to contest the election. 3.3 Explain what the IEC must do i.r.t the ward candidate. 4. On the day of the elections everything must run smoothly in order to have orderly elections. The different role players will all have their own duties. Discuss the duties of officials at the polling stations during elections. 5. Discuss the procedure for counting of votes after the election. 6. Since 1988 political parties openly contested seats in the Municipal elections. The presence of political parties in Municipal elections has both advantages and disadvantages. 6.1 Discuss the advantages of political parties. 6.2 Discuss the disadvantages of political parties.

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Module 7

Councillors
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • • Explain who qualifies to be elected as a councillor Explain how a person is disqualified from becoming a councillor Understand the conditions under which councillors serve Discuss the status of councillors Explain the functions of councillors.

Module 7

1.
1.1

Municipal councillors
Introduction
Municipalities enjoy a constitutional status, but not the same as national and provincial government. A municipal council is a legislative as well as governmental institution. Nowadays councillors need special abilities and qualities although no particular academic or other qualifications are prescribed for councillors. Councillors have diverse training, each with his/ her own occupation and profession exercised in a private capacity. Basic requirements to serve as councillor are a sound judgement, good debating skills and a sound knowledge of governmental and political issues. The basic conditions under which councillors must serve is prescribed in provincial ordinances. In this module the qualifications and disqualifications of councillors, the conditions under which they serve and the status and functions of councillors will be discussed.

1.2

Qualifications needed to be elected as councillor
The election and membership of municipal councils are prescribed in laws passed by national and provincial legislatures. Councils of metropolitan areas (cities) will have more councillors than towns in order to serve more effectively the larger population of voters they represent. The qualifications needed for a person to seek election as a councillor, are the following: • The person must reside (live) in the municipality where he seeks election. • If the person resides outside the municipality, he/she may only seek election if property is owned in the municipality concerned. • The person must be registered as a voter in the municipality concerned.

1.3

Reasons for being disqualified from election as councillor
There are certain criteria prescribed in Acts of Parliament and provincial ordinances that disqualify a person from becoming a councillor. A person does not qualify to be elected as a councillor of a municipality if the person: • is already a councillor of a municipality, unless he/she seeks re-election • is a Member of Parliament • is an unrehabilitated insolvent • was previously a councillor but, due to misconduct or corruption, was declared ineligible to serve as councillor • was found guilty of an offence by a court of law and was sentenced without the option of a fine, in the period three years prior to nomination day • owes money to the municipality concerned for longer than three months • after being elected, no longer qualifies to be registered as a voter for the municipality • is married to an employee of the council • is an employee of another municipal council • was declared unfit to hold public office by a court of law • was declared to be mentally unfit to serve as councillor by a court of law.

1.4

Conditions under which councillors serve / code of conduct
The Municipal Systems Act contains a code of conduct for councillors which sets out the conditions under which councillors must serve.

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Councillors

1.4.1 General conduct of councillors
• A councillor must perform the functions of office in good faith, honestly and in a transparent manner. • At all times a councillor should act in the best interest of the municipality and not compromise the integrity of the municipality.

1.4.2 Attendance at meetings
• A councillor must attend council and committee meetings except if leave of absence is granted or if the councillor had to withdraw from the meeting. • A councillor who is absent for more than three consecutive council or committee meetings without prior permission (except in cases beyond his/her control) is unfit to remain a councillor. • Leave of absence from meetings can be granted to a councillor if he/she informs the secretary in writing at least 24 hours before the meeting.

1.4.3 Sanctions for non-attendance of meetings
A municipal council may fine a councillor for: • not attending a meeting which he/she is required to attend • failing to remain in attendance at such a meeting • being absent for three or more consecutive meetings without permission.

1.4.4 Withdrawal from meetings
• • • A councillor must withdraw from council or committee meetings if he, his spouse, business associate, or company stands to gain financially, either directly or indirectly from matters on the agenda of the council meeting. Councillors must decide for themselves if they or any of the above-mentioned has a financial interest in the matter and withdraw from the meeting. If a councillor refuses to withdraw, a court may find him guilty and order that he be removed from his position.

1.4.5 Vested interest in council contracts
Ordinances of all nine provinces contain conditions that forbid a councillor from entering into an agreement (contract) with his/her council under the following circumstances: • He/she or their spouse or an associate would receive any financial gain or benefit from the agreement; • If there is indirect financial gain, no contract may be closed. (Financial gain through family). There are however, exceptions to the rule and a councillor may enter into contracts with the council where he/she: • enters into a contract with the council regarding the normal municipal services available to all residents (e.g. provision of water and electricity) • buys or rents land with the permission of the Premier or buys or rents land at a public auction • sells goods at a public auction • is a member of a sports club and this club has to sign a contract with the council • is a shareholder of a company entering into contract with the council, provided that he/she and his/her spouse do not own more than a third of the company’s shares. The internal auditors of the council must check the records of the council regularly to ensure that no councillor entered into illegal contracts with the council. If a councillor infringes on this regulation, 55

Module 7

he/she may be found guilty by a court of law and ordered to vacate his office and will not be eligible for election for a period of three years. A councillor who has been forced to resign due to an infringement may not be re-elected as councillor for a period of three years.

1.4.6 Personal gain
• A councillor may not use his position or privileges or confidential information obtained as a councillor for private gain or to improperly benefit another person, except with prior consent of the council. A councillor may not: – be party to or benefit from a contract to provide goods and services to the municipality – perform any other work except that of councillor – obtain any financial interest in any business of the municipality – for a fee appear on behalf of another person before the council.

1.4.7 Declaration of interest
• A councillor must declare in writing to the municipal manager all financial interests and income, within a period of sixty days after elected. • Any change in financial interests must be declared to the municipal manager annually. • Gifts received by a councillor above a prescribed amount, must be declared.

1.4.8 Councillors acting as agents
• before a valuation court appointed by the council or a committee of the council • at a licensing committee of the council • as a paid advocate, attorney, notary or conveyance on behalf of the council on which he/she serves • as medical doctor, veterinary surgeon, architect, engineer, land surveyor, accountant, auctioneer, appraiser or assessor and receive remuneration from the council.

1.4.9 Bribery and corruption
• A councillor may not be involved in bribery and corruption. • If found guilty by a court of law, severe sentences may be imposed and the councillor found guilty of these transgressions will be declared incompetent to remain a councillor. • Such a councillor cannot seek re-election for a period of seven years.

1.4.10 Exemption from personal liability
• A councillor who has taken action, on the instruction of the council and in good faith, is freed by the relevant legislation from personal liability for any action, responsibility, gain or any claim which may derive from it. • Any expenses incurred by the councillor in this regard must be paid from the revenue of the council concerned.

1.4.11 Appointment as an official of a council
A councillor may not be appointed as an official/civil servant of the council unless his term of service as a councillor ended at least six months before appointment. 56

Councillors

1.4.12 Rewards, gifts and favours
A councillor may not request or accept any reward, gift or favour for: • voting or not voting on a matter before the municipal council; • persuading the council or any committee to take certain action • making a presentation to the council or committee.

1.4.13 Unauthorised disclosure of information
A councillor may not, without the permission of the council or committee, disclose any confidential information which • was determined as confidential information by the council • was discussed in a closed session by the council or committee • would violate a person’s right to privacy • was declared to be privileged or secret in terms of law.

1.4.14 Intervention in administration
A councillor may not: • interfere in the administration or management of any department of the municipality unless mandated by the council • give any instruction to an employee of the municipality unless authorised to do so by the council • obstruct or attempt to obstruct the implementation of any decision of the council or a committee by an employee of the municipality • encourage or participate in any conduct which would cause or contribute to maladministration in the council or municipality.

1.4.15 Council property
A councillor may not • appropriate or misuse council property, office facilities or equipment for his personal use or for conducting private business affairs • be in arrears to the municipality for rates and services charges for longer than three months.

1.5

Status of councillors
When a candidate accepts the nomination, he/she agrees to devote him/herself to the interests of the inhabitants of the municipality. If the candidate is elected to the municipal council, the interests of the voters and inhabitants come before personal interest and needs. If elected, the councillor is bound by the code of conduct and the conditions as discussed above, under which he/she must serve. Jointly with other councillors decisions are made and policy is determined for the municipality to serve the best interest of the inhabitants. Individual municipal councillors do not have any authority to make decisions on behalf of the council but, together with the other councillors, as a group, they have the authority given to them by the voters to manage the municipality to the best of their ability.

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Module 7

1.6

Functions of councillors

1.6.1 Representation
Councillors are elected by the voters to represent them (the voter) in the municipal council. The voters expect the councillor to ensure that their needs and expectations are met through decisions by the council and municipal policy. To perform this task councillors must: • keep themselves informed of the views and needs of the voters • determine the nature and extent of activities undertaken by the council and its officials to satisfy these needs • Represent their wards in council meetings by taking part in decision- and policy-making.

1.6.2 Participation in committees
The municipal council makes use of a system of committees to discuss matters and make recommendations to the council before policy is made. Committees are formed for all the major functions of the municipality, e.g. finance committee or transport committee. It is expected from councillors to be a member of a committee, and to exercise their governing function properly they must: • be willing to be a member of a committee or ad hoc committee • be conversant (informed) with the proceedings of committee meetings • put more energy into committee meetings than council meetings, as committee meetings are the venues where all problems, wishes and needs of the inhabitants (voters) are discussed • discuss matters in detail in meetings and formulate alternative policies and decisions for submission to the council. A matter not will be put on the agenda of a full council meeting before it has been discussed in a committee meeting.

1.6.3 Deliberation in council meetings
All matters are first discussed and analysed by a committee before being submitted to the full council for consideration and policy making. In council meetings councillors must: • evaluate the recommendations of the committees by creative discussion in public debate; • participate in the public debate and thus defending the interests of the voters; • if necessary, amend or reject recommendations; • if satisfied with the recommendation of a committee, approve it. This recommendation will then become council policy.

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Councillors

1.6.4 Public liaison
A councillor’s duty does not end after decision-making. Sometimes the council makes decisions that are not always acceptable for all the voters. A councillor as part of his/her liaison function must: • convince voters in his/her ward of the reason for council decisions and policy • inform the community about the progress made in the execution of council decisions and the rendering of services • evaluate the results of policies which have been implemented to determine whether the needs and wishes of the community have been satisfied • be available to the community to learn toknow their needs and expectations.

1.7

Conclusion
The high degree of urbanisation, especially in metropolitan areas, requires municipal councillors with exceptional qualities such as a high degree of integrity, a good sense of judgement, the ability to debate, good articulation and the art of persuasion, in order to be able to get colleagues and others to accept their point of view. Although no specific qualification is necessary to become a councillor, specific disqualifications are prescribed in legislation to prevent ineligible persons from serving as councillors. Individual municipal councillors do not have authority on their own, and cannot interfere in the administration of the municipality. Their function is to govern the municipality through decisions and policy approved in council and committee meetings and represents the voters who elected them.

Review questions 1. To be nominated or elected as members of municipal councils, members must comply with certain statutory qualifications prescribed in Acts of Parliament and provincial ordinances. Discuss the criteria which can be used to disqualify a person from becoming a councillor. 2. Briefly discuss the following conditions / codes of conduct under which councillors must serve: 2.1 Withdrawal from meetings 2.2 Exceptions for entering into contracts/agreements with the council 2.3 Personal gain 2.4 Acting as agent 2.5 Declaration of interest 2.6 Interference in the administration 3. Discuss the functions of councillors.

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Module 7

60

Module 8

Mayors
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • • Understand the mayoral system in municipal authorities Explain the process of election of the mayor Discuss the duties and powers of the mayor Explain the role of the deputy mayor Explain the role of chairperson of a committee in municipal authorities.

Module 8

1.
1.1

Officebearers of municipal councils
Introduction
New legislation makes provision for certain office-bearers, namely the mayor, deputy mayor, chairperson of the council and chairperson of committees. These office-bearers are elected annually by the council. The office-bearers are elected by majority vote of the councillors and committee members.

1.2

The mayor
Two types of mayoral systems are applicable in municipal authorities. • A Strong Mayor System where the mayor is elected by voters and the mayor serves as chief executive of the municipal authority. This system is in use in America. • The Weak Mayor System where the mayor is elected by the council members. South Africa makes use of this system but the mayor plays a much bigger role nowadays. The current status of mayors in South Africa has changed radically from the older, traditional model in the last century where the mayor’s role was more ceremonial. The new South African mayor is the political leader of the council, acts as chairperson of the council and has certain executive powers. The Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998 makes provision for the election of an executive mayor or non-executive mayor depending on the type of municipal structure adopted.

1.2.1 Election of the mayor (executive or non-executive mayor)
The municipal council of each municipal authority elects its own office bearers. The mayor is elected at the first meeting of the newly elected council. The term of office of the mayor is one year and a mayor may be re-elected. The mayor is elected before the chairpersons of the various committees because the mayor is not allowed to chair a committee meeting. In Schedule 3 of the Municipal Structures Act the procedure for electing the executive mayor, deputy executive mayor, mayor or deputy mayor and Speaker are set out. The procedure for electing a mayor is as follows: • Nominations are called for by the senior official (often The Municipal Manager) at the first council meeting. • The Municipal Manager must decide on the form on which nominations can be submitted. • The nomination form, or letter from absent of sick nominee, must be signed by two council members and by the nominated member. • The person presiding over the meeting must announce the names of all nominees, but not allow a debate. • If only one candidate is nominated, the person presiding must declare that candidate as elected. • If more than one candidate is nominated, a vote must be taken by secret ballot and each councillor present may cast one vote. The candidate receiving the most votes is declared elected.

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Mayors

• If no candidate receives an outright majority of votes, then the candidate with the lowest number of votes is eliminated and another vote is taken. This process continue till one candidate has a clear majority and is elected. • If only two candidates are nominated, or only two remain after having received the same number of votes, a further council meeting must be held within seven days where election procedure is repeated till a candidate is elected.

1.2.2 Functions and powers of executive mayors
The functions of the executive mayor in terms of Section 56 of the Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998 are to: • receive reports from the committees of the council and to forward them, with the necessary recommendations, to the council, except if the mayor can handle the matter in terms of delegated powers • identify the needs of the municipality • review and evaluate those needs in order of priority • recommend to the municipal council programmes and strategies to address the priority needs and the estimates of revenue and expenditure for these needs, taking into account national and provincial plans • recommend the best way to deliver those strategies and satisfy the needs to the maximum benefit of the community • identify and develop criteria in terms of which the progress of the implementation of strategies and programmes can be evaluated • review municipal performance in order to improve: – the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of the municipality – the efficiency of credit control and revenue and debt collection – the implementation of municipal by-laws • monitor the management of the administration of the municipality in accordance with municipal council directions • oversee the provision of services to communities in the municipality in a sustainable manner; • perform such duties and exercise such powers as delegated by the council • report annually on the involvement of communities and community organisations in the affairs of the municipality • ensure that the public view is taken into account.

“The people of Cape Town have given us the resounding mandate to deliver on the promise of building the opportunity city of the future.” “We will build on the solid foundation laid by the previous two administrations under my predecessors, Helen Zille and Dan Plato, by fulfilling our mission of being a government of excellence and innovation, a government with a vision of a greater city.” “That vision is to address poverty through economic growth and jobs, because only through a strategy of sustained poverty reduction through economic development will we ensure that we give every resident the means for a better life and create a truly inclusive city.” “I am determined that all of us in this new administration will work tirelessly, day and night, to live up to this vote of confidence to ensure that we do justice to the hopes, dreams and aspirations of all the citizens of our great city. It will be difficult work but I have faith that we will achieve what we set out to do and more.” (Executive Mayor Alderman Patricia de Lille)

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Module 8 Powers and functions of mayors (non-executive) The non-executive Mayor has the same functions as the traditional mayor. The powers and functions are: • to chair the full municipal council meeting except where the Management Committee System is used • to be an ex-officio (non-voting) member of each committee • to have a casting vote in the council, in addition to normal vote in the case of an equal vote • to convene an extra-ordinary or special meeting • to sign the minutes of the council meeting, often in conjunction with the municipal manager • to call a public meeting on request of a prescribed number of voters • to authenticate documents (sign documents to give it legal validity). Non-statutory functions of the mayor are: • to represent the town or city • to act as ceremonial head of the city or town and meet and entertain prominent visitors on behalf of the community, and attend functions • to head the delegations to provincial and central government • to initiate, sponsors or act as patron for welfare causes. The remuneration of mayors is set out the Public Office Bearers Act 20 of 1998 which provides for the determination of upper limits of the salaries and allowances of the different members of municipal councils by the Minister of Provincial Affairs and Local Government after consultation with the local government MEC’s.

1.3

Deputy mayors
The deputy mayor is elected at the same meeting and in the same manner as the mayor. There are two types of deputy mayor, namely the deputy executive mayor and the deputy mayor, depending on the type of municipality. Both types do not have any statutory powers, but assume the powers of the executive mayor/mayor when they are absent or unavailable.

1.4

Chairpersons of committees
The Municipal Structures Act makes provision for the compulsory committees, such as the executive committee or mayoral committee for executive mayors and committees such as planning, finance, etc., as well as sub-council and ward committees. For each committee a chairperson and deputy chairperson must be appointed after the different committees have been established by the council. The council may appoint the chairperson and deputy chairperson, or the members of the committee can elect them. The executive mayor/mayor is not allowed to chair a committee meeting. The duties of the chairman of the committees will be discussed in Module 10.

1.5

Conclusion
Office bearers play an important role in the municipal councils and new legislation makes provision for the election of an executive mayor or mayor deputy, executive mayor and/or deputy mayor. The election of the office bearers and their own powers and responsibilities is set out in the Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998.

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Mayors

Municipalities make use of a committee system and the chairperson of the committees must ensure that committees are effective and issues are discussed and evaluated before recommendations to the council are made.

Review questions 1. Discuss the procedure for electing the mayor. 2. Discuss the powers and functions of the executive mayor. 3. Discuss the powers and functions of the non-executive mayor.

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Module 8

66

Module 9

Committee system
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • • Understand the committee structures of municipalities Explain the executive committee system of municipalities Explain the role of the committees in assisting the executive committee/mayor Explain the metropolitan sub-council system Explain the role of ward committees

Module 9

1.
1.1

Committee systems of muncipal councils
Introduction
The Municipal Structures Act makes provision for compulsory committees, such as the executive committee or mayoral committee for executive mayors and portfolio (Section 79) committees for the various services such as finance, planning, etc. The main advantage of committees is to prevent lengthy council meetings where matters have to be discussed in detail. With a committee system, the committee must investigate matters and report back to the council where the final decisions are taken. Sections 33 and 79 of the Municipal Structures Act gives municipalities the power to establish committees to ensure efficiency and effectiveness in the performance of the municipality and the council. Section 79(2) of the Act allows the council to delegate powers to these committees. The old single/management committee and multiple committee system were replaced by the executive committee, mayoral committee, metropolitan sub-councils, ward committees and committees to assist the executive or mayoral committees.

1.2.

The Executive Committee (previously known as the Single or Management Committee)

1.2.1 Composition of the executive committee
• An executive committee must be established within 14 days after the election. • The number of members is calculated on the basis of 20% of the total number of councillors of the town/city or TEN, whichever is the lowest. • The parties on the committee must be proportionally represented. • The members are elected by majority vote in the council. • The members are elected after the executive mayor and deputy have been elected. • It is desirable to limit the number of executive councillors, because of the high rate of remuneration. • The members are elected for the term of office of the council. A vacancy on the executive committee can occur if: • a councillor resigns as a member of the executive committee • one or more members of the executive committee are removed from office • a member ceases to be a councillor.

1.2.2 Powers and functions of the executive committee
The mayor decides when and where the executive committee meets. A majority of the members may, in writing, request the Mayor to convene a meeting. By vote of a majority of its members, the executive committee determines its own procedures and for a quorum the majority of members must be present. Decisions are taken by majority vote and the mayor has a casting vote. A quorum is a legal requirement for the constitution of a valid meeting at which a binding decision may be taken.

68

Committee system

The functions and powers of the executive committee are to: • receive reports from other committees, which are forwarded to the council with recommendations, except if the executive committee can deal with the matter • identify the needs of the municipality • review and evaluate those needs in order of priority • recommend to the municipal council programmes and strategies to address the priority needs and the estimates of revenue and expenditure for these needs • recommend the best way to deliver those strategies and satisfy the needs to the maximum benefit of the community • evaluate the progress of the implementation of strategies and programmes that address the needs • review municipal performance in order to improve: – the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of the municipality; – the efficiency of credit control and revenue and debt collection; – the implementation of municipal by-laws • monitor the management of the administration of the municipality in accordance with municipal council directions • oversee the provision of services to communities in the municipality in a sustainable manner; • perform such duties and exercise such powers as delegated by the council • report annually on the involvement of communities and community organisations in the affairs of the municipality • ensure that public views are taken into account.

1.2.3 Advantages
• • • • • • Decisions are taken more quickly because there is only one committee to consider matters. The executive committee give priority to the basic needs of the community. It concentrates on developmental local government. It deals with financial control, personnel matters, property management and policy formulation. It makes an effort to get community involvement. Accountability can be pinned on a specific person because of the small number of members.

1.2.4 Disadvantages
• Other councillors lose interest in municipal administration if they are not a member of the executive committee. • Council meetings tend to be there as a rubber stamp for the recommendations of the executive committee. • Members of the executive committee tend to dominate council meetings. • Most matters are presented in final form before the council and non-members of the executive committee feel that they do not have much say in the matter. • The term of office for the members of the executive committee is too long. • The executive committees often does not succeed in co-ordinating the activities of the different departments.

1.3

Committees to assist executive committees or executive mayors (previously known as Multiple Committees)
An executive committee or executive mayor may appoint committees to assist them. The Mayor: • chooses the members of the mayoral committee (the chairperson of the portfolio committees) • appoints the chairperson of the committee • may delegate any vested powers and duties to such a committee.

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Module 9

The function of these committees is to: • report to the executive committee or mayor in accordance with the direction or delegation given to them • assist the executive committee or mayor. This committee is not a committee of the council but only assists the executive committee and mayor.

City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Cape Town and Johannesburg as well as Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality (PE) make use of this system. See below: Executive Mayoral System: Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality The Executive Mayor governs together with the Speaker, who is the Chairperson of the Metropolitan Council, the Deputy Executive Mayor and a team of nine Chairpersons of Portfolio Committees within an Executive Mayoral Committee system. Our Executive Mayoral system is combined with a vibrant Ward Participatory System to ensure community participation on grassroots level. The Portfolio Committees are outlined below: 1. Budget and Treasury 2. Economic Development, Tourism and Agriculture 3. Public Health 4. Human Settlements 5. Corporate Services 6. Infrastructure and Engineering 7. Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture 8. Safety and Security 9. Constituency Services 10. Special Projects

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Committee system

1.3.1 Advantages of the multiple committee system (portfolio committees)
• There is a wider and more corporate decision-making process with more minds applied to making a decision. • Councillors are more aware of the needs in the area where they live. • Councillors are more involved in the affairs of the area where they live, and get a better view of the services that are provided. • Committees are able to ensure that the interests of a wide variety of people are represented. • This system keeps in closer touch with the local public.

1.3.2 Disadvantages of the multiple committee system
• If committees meet in secret and the public are not allowed in, it is not honest governance. • Councillors are not elected to manage the administration and need to operate in the field of politics and not interfere in the administration of the municipality. • Corporate decision-making does not guarantee good decisions. • The system can hamper co-ordination and forward-thinking if committees are not kept on track by the chairperson. • It can lead to attempts to interfere in the administration. • Because there are quite a number of members involved, it is difficult for the public to pin accountability on a person. Activity 4 Find out what type of committee system the municipality in your area uses. Identify the following: • Mayor/executive mayor • Executive/mayoral committee members • If there are metropolitan sub-councils and how many there are • If there are ward committees and which committee represents the area you live in • If there are committees that assist the executive committee or mayor

1.4

Metropolitan sub-councils
Only metropolitan municipalities established as a type of municipality with sub-councils may establish sub-councils.

1.4.1 Composition of metropolitan sub-councils
The municipal council must: • Establish a sub-council by means of a by-law, after a process of public consultation • Determine, through the by-law, the number of sub-councils to be established and which wards will form a sub-council • provide a financial framework within which the sub-council must function (funds from the main budget must cover operating costs of the sub-council) • give each sub-council a name. Other features of sub-councils are: • Only councillors may be members of a sub-council. • All the councillors representing the wards in the sub-council area are automatically members of the sub-council.

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Module 9 • Additional PR councillors become members in proportion to the number of registered voters in the area. • One of the members is elected as chairperson by the sub-council. • Members serve for the term of office of the council. • The chairman decides when and where the sub-council will meet. • A meeting must be held if the majority of members request it in writing. • A sub-council, by means of majority vote, may determine its own procedures, subject to directions by the council. • A quorum is needed for sub-council decisions which are made by majority vote. • A sub-council may appoint committees, including a management committee, to assist it in exercising its duties. • A sub-council has the statutory power to make recommendations to the council on any matter affecting its area. • A sub-council may advise the council on what duties and powers should be allocated to it.

1.4.2 Functions and powers of sub-councils
Sub-councils have the following functions: • Promoting community participation in the IDP • Performance management • The choice of service providers • The establishment of municipal service districts • The monitoring of customer care and management The following delegated powers are given to sub-councils: • Local rezoning, and town planning • Abatement of public nuisances • Control over undertakings that sell intoxicating liquor to the public – licensing and control over undertakings that sell food to the public. What are sub-councils and why do we need them? The City of Cape Town provides residents with a variety of municipal services such as health, water, wastewater and sewerage systems, roads and traffic safety services, and housing sites and services. To judge whether it is doing this effectively, it needs to listen to what residents have to say. It does this via its sub-councils - specialised decentralised governmental structures that give residents a say in local government. There are 24 sub councils in Cape Town. Collectively, these exercise over 90 functions and powers delegated directly to them by the City’s Council. Some of these include: • encouraging residents to get involved in decisions on the City’s policies and legislation, such as draft by-laws, proposed policies, its annual budget and its 5 year plan • monitoring City service delivery, resolving residents’ complaints and enquiries • supervising the spending of ward allocations (money that the City gives to sub-councils) on service delivery issues • dealing with references from the City’s portfolio committees about policies, by-laws and regulations • making recommendations to Council on matters affecting their areas • authorising business licences • adopting rules of order • In this way, they help the City to better meet the needs of Cape Town’s residents. Sub-council meetings Sub-council meetings are open to the public. They are held at least once a month except during recess, which is usually in the school holidays. (www.capetown.gov.za) 72

Committee system

1.5

Ward committees
Ward committees are an option allowed in the Municipal Structures Act for metropolitan and local municipalities established as a type with ward committees. In some municipalities there can be sub-councils and ward committees. Ward committees are established to enhance participation by the community. Ward committees are established by rules made by the council and consist of: • The ward councillor is the chairperson • Not more than ten persons who are elected by the community they serve • Women should be well represented. The purposes of the ward committees are: • to get better participation from the community to inform council decisions • to make sure that there is more effective communication between the council and the community • to assist the ward councillor with consultation and report-backs to the community. Ward committees cannot directly communicate with the administration of the municipality and have to communicate through the councillor to the council or mayor.

Ward committees Each ward may have a ward committee of up to 10 persons which must accurately reflect the registered CBOs in the ward in the relevant sectors including ratepayers’ and civic organisations, faith-based organisations, safety and security groups, environmental groups, early education, youth organisations, arts and culture, sport, the business community and designated vulnerable groups such as the aged, gender and the disabled. The Ward Councillor is the chairperson of the ward committee. A proportional representation (PR) councillor allocated to the Ward Committee, and the Junior City Councillor, are ex officio non-voting members. All committee members must regularly consult their sectors and advise the ward councillor on needs and priorities, including the budget, and make recommendations to the sub-council or other committees of council. Although ward committees have no powers, they are the most direct link between a community and the structures of council. They must meet at least quarterly and members receive an allowance for out of pocket expenses to carry out their duties. Click on the following documents for more information: (www.capetown.gov.za)

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The City of Cape Town’s schematic representation of the committee system which helps the residents understand how they fit into local government.

1.6

Conclusion
All types and forms of government have committees. No democratic system can function without a committee system. The Municipal Structures Act makes provision for the establishment of compulsory committees, such as the executive committee or the mayoral committee for executive mayors, who can establish other committees to assist them. Sub-council and ward committees can also be established, which bring municipal government to the voters.

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Meeting procedures of municipal councils
After completion of this module you should be able to: • • • • • • Understand the rules/procedures of meetings Know the value of reports Explain the function of an agenda Know how to compile an agenda Understand the function of the minutes of a meeting Explain the duties of the chairperson of a meeting

Module 10

1.
1.1

Meeting procedures of municipal councils
Introduction
All types and forms of government have committees. Committees are a fact of life and it is impossible to govern democratically without meetings where issues are discussed and decisions are made. The Municipal Structures Act makes provision for compulsory committees but a municipal council must guard against forming too many committees. Meetings are a formal procedure, laid down by statutory provisions, to discuss and decide on matters that affect the municipal authority, thus it is important to keep records of agendas, minutes, reports and all relevant documentation related to the meeting. These documents are the memory of the council and committees and record must be kept of all documents.

• A chairperson organizes a meeting through an agenda (list of items to be discussed) which is distributed in advance. • The chairperson is responsible for running meetings: keeping the discussion on the appropriate subject, recognising members (calling on them to speak), and calling for votes after a debate has taken place. (Formal voting is normally only done in committees involved in governance as governance committees often have formal processes.) • Minutes are a record of the discussion and decisions of the meeting, taken by a person designated as the secretary of the meeting. Typically for government committees, the minutes are legally binding. • For committees that meet regularly, the minutes of the most recent meeting are often circulated to committee members before the next meeting. • Committees may meet on a regular basis, often weekly or yearly, or meetings may be called irregularly as the need arises.

1.2

Rules of meeting procedures / standing orders
When functions and powers are delegated, formal written documents and procedures explaining the delegated powers must also be given to the official/s. Various provincial ordinances make provision for the establishment of committees and the procedures that must be followed. Below is an example of a provincial ordinance of the Eastern Cape in this regard.

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Meeting procedures of municipal councils

Each municipal authority should have its own set of standard rules and procedures for meetings to ensure that meetings are held in an orderly manner. These procedures must prescribe the order of business, notice of meeting, agenda, minutes, motions, etc.

1.3

Reports
Most of the items discussed at council and commitee meetings are submitted for discussion in the form of reports. These reports are submitted under the signature of the head of department or delegate, in a prescribed format. Reports are numbered on the first page and must be traceable immediately. Councillors receive a lot of reports and deal with a large volume of literature received. The following tips can help to make the tasks of the counicillors easier: • Council must clearly specify who may sign reports to eliminate uncontrolled reports. • Reports that affect more than one department (organisational unit) can only be submitted to the council if comments of all departments concerned have been obtained and included in the report.

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• Reports must be submitted in a prescribed format and should include: – A systematic representation of particulars and arguments; – A summary of the report – A recommendation • Reports submitted must be correct and written in unambiguous language to be suitable for discussion without requiring explanations from the author of the report.

A notice of a meeting states the date, time and place of a meeting, and is usually at the top of the same page as the agenda. Notice must normally be given at least 7 days in advance.

1.4

Notice of Meeting
Provincial ordinances prescribe that members of Council and commitee members should be informed of the meeting in time for them to prepare for the meeting. Article 16 (4 &5) of Local Authority Notice 82 below, prescribes the procedure for giving notice of a meeting to councillors.

An agenda is a list of items (issues) to be discussed at a meeting. All reports / financial statements to be discussed should be attached to the agenda.

1.5

Agenda
No meeting can be productive without an agenda which is to a meeting like a map to a tourist. The agenda contains the following information: • Type of meeting, date, time and venue of the meeting (notice of meeting) • List of items to be discussed at the meeting • Reports that need to be discussed. These should be attached to enable the members to prepare themselves for the meeting.

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Meeting procedures of municipal councils

1.5.1 Format of agenda
Generally the format below is adopted at meetings: • At the first meeting of the new council or committee, or if a chairman resigned, a chairperson must be elected. • If it is an extra-ordinary or special meeting, the notice convening the meeting must be read as members are notified without an agenda. All normal council and committee meetings’ format is as follows: • Welcome • Appologies of absence and leave noted • Confirmation of minutes of previous meeting • Declarations and announcements • Interviews or consultation with delegates or persons invited to attend the meeting - these people must leave the meeting after they have given their input and are not allowed to vote at council meetings. • Statutory matters, e.g. motions regarding closure of roads or motions on by-law amendments, etc. • Priority matters in terms of a resolution of a previous meeting • Matters referred from previous meetings • Reports of committees, delegates or officials of the municpal authority - these documents deal with the matters to be discussed at the meeting. • Consideration of reports, announcements, petitions and applications submitted by the municipal manager and requiring urgent attention; • Notices or motions and questions which should appear on the agenda in the order in which they were received by the municipal manager. • General / any other business • Date of next meeting. • Under general / other business new items can be included on the agenda.

1.5.2 Compilation of the agenda
Binding The ideal is that the agenda with all the reports and annexures should be bounded into one document. Loose agenda documents could cause problems such as: • Pages being lost • Difficulty in finding documents • Difficulty in handling documents • Disturbance of the sequence of documents Numbering Different methods can be used to but the most convenient method is to use the number of the agenda item and then identify the page number e.g. List of items page number Item 1: p 1 Item 2: p 1 Sub-items can be numbered as follows: Item 9: Sub-item 9.1 p 13 – 15

The sub-items represent issues of the different committees or departments.

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1.5.3 Rules for submission of agenda items
Each municipal council should have rules to enable the compiler of the agenda to receive the items in time to allow sufficient time for the typing, duplicating, binding and sending out of agenda. These rules should include the following: • form in which items for agenda must be submitted; • manner, e.g. typed, emailed, etc. • time of submission to be included in the next agenda.

1.5.4 Different agendas for the same meeting
Some municipal authorities make provision for a supplementary agenda. Extremely urgent matters can be placed on a separate agenda during the meeting itself. Councillors, however, have to guard againstmisuse of this practice as it can destroy the systematic procedure of a meeting. In some cases a confidential and public agenda is drawn up for the same meeting. This is necessary where certain matters have to be kept confidential for particular reasons. This happens because council meetings are open to the public and anybody can attend the meetings.

1.5.5 Statutory provisions
There are statutory provisions for agendas for each municipal authority and councillors must be aware of the statutory provisions for their municipality. General provisions found in most municipal authorities are: • All items on the agenda must be considered. If all relevant information is not available for the discussion of an item, it can be referred to the next meeting. • The chairman must ensure that items are discussed as they appear on the agenda except if it has beendecided to change the order through majority vote by the councillors. • An item not on the agenda can only be discussed if the councillors present are in favour thereof. • Resolutions passed after some councillors have left the room under the impression that the meeting has adjourned, are invalid. Minutes are the written record of a meeting or hearing. They typically describe the events of the meeting, starting with a list of the attendees and absentees, a statement of the issues considered by the participants, and the related decisions of these issues.

1.6

Minutes
A secretary is responsible to take note of all decisions (resolutions) taken by the members during the meeting. After the meeting the items discussed and the resolutions must be recorded in the minutes. If minutes are written in English, they must be written in the past tense whilst if they are written in Afrikaans, the present tense is used.

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The minutes must be clear, concise and an objective description of: • The members present/absent; • Matters discussed • Decisions taken • Who is responsible for actions to be taken. The reasons why minutes are important: • Minutes are the official record of the decisions taken at a meeting and all members have a right to access to the minutes. • Decisions taken at meetings must be put into action, and without formal written minutes disagreements on the decisions taken might occur. • Report-back is given at the next meeting on the result of actions taken due to the decisions of the previous meeting. • Minutes of the previous meeting are also approved at the follow-up meeting if all members agree with the content. • Minutes, together with the budget documents of municipal authorities, are seen as a declaration of policy that needs to be executed. • Minutes are legally binding and must be kept on record for future use. Certain aspects need to be kept in mind when drawing up minutes.

1.6.1 Order of items
• Items in minutes must appear in the same sequence as on the agenda even if the councillors decided to change the sequence of items for discussion. • Correlation of items on the agenda and minutes makes it easier for councillors to refer to an item as item numbers remain the same.

1.6.2 Content
The heading should include: • Name of municipal authority • Nature of meeting (ordinary, committee or special meeting) • Date, place and time of meeting • The names of those concerned as follows: – Councillors present – Councillors absent with and without apology – Serving officials – Special delegates with an indication of when they joined and left Previous minutes • Word “approved” with place for signature of chairman, and date. Body of minutes should include: • Headings of items • Descriptions of items discussed • Decisions taken • Names of councillors / persons responsible for actions • Due dates for actions to be taken

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Closure • Time the meeting adjourned and date of next meeting.

1.6.3 Types of minutes
The body of the minutes will depend on the type of minutes required. There are three types of minutes: • Verbatim minutes: (unusual for council meetings) Word by word reports of the discussions and resolutions during a meeting which are usually kept for proceedings of commissions of enquiry. • Narrative minutes: (unusual for council meetings) Customary minutes for private clubs which reflect a brief summary of discussions and resolutions. • Minutes containing items and resolutions: (used by municipal councils) These are used for council meetings. A typical example is as follows:

Transport services a) Extend My-City bus service to X b) Purchase 4 buses for this service

A municipal council can decide which type of minutes to use and has to look at the advantages and disadvantages of all systems before deciding.

Activity 5 Get a copy of an agenda and minutes of a council meeting of your local authority. Bring it to class and discuss it. (You can go to the website of your municipality and find it there).

1.6.4 Compilation
To compile minutes is a simple task because they are compiled as a unit. Where more than one agenda have been dealt with at the same meeting, it is possible to compile one set of minutes for both agendas. A confidental agenda item does not necessarily result in a confidential resolution. If certain discussions in a council meeting were held confidentially and the resolutions were confirmed by the council as a whole, such resolutions are no longer regarded as confidential and can be included in the agenda. The most common way to number minutes is according to the numbers on the agenda. It is also convenient if the minutes are bound together with the annexures in one volume.

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1.6.5 Indexing
Indexing is the compilation of a catalogue of the subjects on which council resolutions have been passed. This helps with the tracing of information, especially to determine if a resolution on a specific item has been passed. Indexing is done alphabetically according to the item (e.g. transport) with the respective dates and relevant file numbers. Nowadays it is very easy to trace an resolution by using the ‘search engine’ on the website of the municipal authority.

1.6.6 Statutory provisions
There are a few statutory provisions relating to meetings: • Counicillors may not vote or take part in discussions on minutes of meetings which they did not attend. • After minutes have been approved and signed by the chairperson, no amendments or deletions may be made. • A councillor may request that the division of voters must be recorded in the minutes. • A councillor a request that his objection against a resolution be noted.

1.7

Chairperson
The mayor of the city or town acts as chairperson of the council meetings and, if he/she is absent, the deputy mayor does. If both are absent, the councillors present elect one of the members to chair the meeting. For successful discussion and debating at a meeting, the chairman: • should should not dominate and enforce his/her views on the other members • must give guidance at the meetings • must be fully knowledgeable about the content and meaning of all items on the agenda • should ensure that discussion does not develop into personal vendettas • shoule perserve the unity of the council and not allow it to split into groups.

1.7.1 Functions of the chairperson
The chairperson must consult the relevant Rules of Order or Standing Orders to familiarise himself with the duties and powers of the chairperson. Functions of the chairperson: • To organise the meeting, through an agenda, which is distributed in advance • To ensure that the meeting proceeds in accordance with any Standing Orders or Rules of Procedure • To convene the meeting and ensure that it starts on time • To sign minutes of the previous meeting after adoption • To deal with items as they appear on the agenda • To keep the discussions on the appropriate subject, and determine the order in which members speak • To receive motions and submit them to the meeting for discussion • To allow points of order to be raised and verify them • To be impartial at all times • To ensure that the debate does not become irrelevant 83

Module 10

A motion is a formal proposal by a member of a council meeting that the meeting take certain action. It can bring new business before the assembly or consist of numerous other proposals to take procedural steps or carry out other actions relating either to a pending motion or the body itself.

1.7.2 Powers of the chairperson
The chairperson: • keeps order by asking members to withdraw remarks or apologise • can request members to leave the room if they disturb the order • may give rulings on points of order and procedures and can insist that members obey his/her rulings • may exercise a casting vote if the vote is equal • may adjourn the meeting if a quorum is not present or if the meeting becomes disorderly • he/she may introduce urgent items

1.7.3 Cycle of events during a meeting
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Agenda (information) Meeting (conducted in accordance with Standing Orders) Decisions Minutes (official record of decisions/resolutions) Action (execution of decisions) Report back (on results at next meeting)

Below a schemtic representation of the meeting procedure

1. Agenda

6. Reporting

2. Meetings

5. Action

3. Decisions

4. Minutes

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Meeting procedures of municipal councils

1.8

Conclusion
Meetings are necessary to make binding decisions, therefore the Standing Orders must be followed when conducting meetings. Meetings take time and must be conducted in an orderly way to eliminate waste of time, therefore agendas are distributed beforehand for members to familiarise themselves with the items to be discussed. Decisions/resolutions made at meetings are binding and must be recorded and written in such a way that they are easy to understand and are a true reflection of the decisions of the meeting. Minutes are important documents in which the policy of the municipal authority is set out, and must be kept for future reference. The chairperson is the person who must ensure that meetings are orderly; the items on the agenda are discussed in the order they appear, and decisions are made. Meetings are a fact of life and it is impossible to govern democratically without meetings where issues are discussed and decisions are made.

Review questions
1. Councillors receive a lot of reports and deal with a large volume of literature received. What practical hints can help to make their task easier? 2. Which format should be used when submitting reports? 3. There are statutory provisions for agendas for each municipal authority and councillors must be aware of the statutory provisions for their municipality. Discuss the general provisions found in most municipal authorities. 4. Explain the reasons why minutes are important. 5. Which aspects should be kept in mind when drawing up minutes? 6. List and briefly explain the different types of minutes that can be used. 7. Discuss the statutory provisions that councillors must adhere to regarding meetings. 8. For successful discussions and debating at meetings there are certain things the chairperson must adhere to. Discuss. 9. The chairman must consult the relevant Rules of Order to familiarise himself with his duties and powers. Discuss: 9.1 The functions of the chairman 9.2 The duties of the chairman 10. Explain the cycle of a meeting either with a description or a schematic representation.

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Municipal Administration

Bibliography

Bibliography

Official publications
The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa Act 108 of 1996 Electoral Act 73 of 1998 Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998. Municipal Structures Amendment Act 20 of 2002 Municipal Electoral Act 27 of 2000. Municipal Finance Management Act 56 of 2003 The White Paper on Local Government, March 1998 A Guideline to Municipal Finance Management for Councillors.

Web searches
www.capetown.gov.za www.joburg.org.za www.durban.gov.za www.nelsonmandelabay.gov.za www.parliament.gov.za www.sadelivery.co.za

Magazines and ebooks
Delivery, the magazine for local government Insession – parliamentary magazine Spark – a newsletter for civil society and local government. Inside CoGTA published by the Chief Directorate: Communications and Marketing

Reference books
Craythorne, DL, Municipal Administration. The Handbook, 6th edition, Juta, 2006. Botes, PS, et al, Public Administration and Management, Kagiso Tertiary, 1992. Cloete, JNN, Public Administration and Management, New Constitutional dispensation, JL van Schaik, 1996. Du Toit, D et al, Public Administration and Management – The Grassroots, 2nd ed, Juta, 1998.

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