Local Government Bulletin

Volume 1, Issue 2, July 1999
Author: Community Law Centre
Published: Jul 01, 1999
Employment Equity Act
Author: Professor Darcy du Toit

There are those who say that the old South Africa is alive and well in the workplace. The upper levels of many organisations remain white and male dominated. Left to market forces, transformation proceeds at a snails pace.

The Municipal Council
Author: Jaap de Visser

The Municipal Council receives ample attention in the Municipal Structures Act. The Act contains provisions on issues such as the election and removal from office of councillors, and the internal proceedings in, and the dissolution of the council. The Act also contains a Code of Conduct. This third part of our series on the structures Act summarises chapter three of the Act that deals with the municipal council, discusses the Code of Conduct as well as the ward committees and the role of traditional leaders in municipal councils.

Municipal Police Services
Author: Nico Steytler

Visible policing has long been considered as indispensable in the fight against crime and lawlessness. Quick-fix solutions such as rent-a-cop schemes, were put forward as the answer. With the passing of the South African Police Services Amendment Act 83 of 1998, the legal framework has been created for the establishment of municipal police services.

Section 139 Intervention
Author: Nico Steytler

Section 139 of the Constitution authorises the provincial executive to intervene in a municipality when it does not fulfil its executive obligation in terms of legislation. This article seeks to introduce the rules and principles that can be derived from the Constitution.

The Battle of Butterworth
Author: Jaap de Visser

Butterworth, an industrial and business centre halfway between East London and the former Transkei capital of Umtata, made history as the first municipality to be subjected to an intervention by provincial government under the 1996 Constitution The Eastern Cape provincial executive intervened in the Butterworth Transitional Local Council and assumed full responsibility for the administration of Butterworth.

Intervening into Warrenton
Author: Johann Metler

On 17 February 1999, the provincial executive of the Northern Cape Province intervened into the Warrenton municipality On 16 March, the matter was reported to the chairperson of the NCOP and three days later, the NCOP process got off to a start. This article will examine the circumstances that gave rise to the intervention, the handling of the intervention by all concerned and any lessons that may be learnt from it.

From SALGA: Section 139 Interventions: Establishing a Regulatory Framework.
Author: Thabo Mokwena

The Constitution demands that each sphere of government must respect the constitutional status, powers and functions of the other spheres and that each should exercise its powers and perform its functions without encroaching on the geographical, functional or institutional integrity of another sphere.

From the Courts:
Author: Jaap de Visser

Does a Town Clerk have the Authority to Institute Legal Proceedings on Behalf of the Municipality?

Volume 1, Issue 1, April 1999
Author: MLGI (Community Law Centre)
Published: Apr 01, 1999
Michael Sutcliffe - Municipal Demarcation Board
Author: Michael Sutcliffe

Over the past two months the Municipal Demarcation Board has focused on the following: Developing a framework within which the demarcation process would occur before the 2000 elections: Building an institutional base for the board: Finally, developing relationships with stakeholders and role-players. This report briefly outlines key aspects each of these.

Status of local government
Author: Nico Steytler

The Constitutional Court has affirmed that the new constitutional order confers on local government the status of an autonomous and distinct component of government. Local government is no longer merely exercising powers delegated to it by the national or provincial government: Instead municipal councils are legislative assemblies and their legislative acts, which include levying taxes and adopting budgets, are not subject to administrative review by the courts. Although decided under the interim Constitution, the decision in Fedsure Life Assurance Ltd v Greater Johannesburg Transitional Metropolitan Council 1999 (12) BCLR 1458 (CC) reinforces the new and increased status the 1996 Constitution accords local government.

Local government elections
Author: Johann Metler

Recent amendments to the Constitution, read with certain provisions of the Municipal Structures Act, have the effect that the elections for local government, which were due to take place after October 1999, will now take place approximately one year later.

Municipal Structures Act: The Birth of a New Generation of Municipalities.
Author: Jaap de Visser

The second pillar of new local government has been erected: on 18 December 1998 the President signed signed the Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998 into law. This Act, which provides for the establishment of a new generation of municipalities, came into operation on 1 February 1999.

Municipal Structures Act: Executive Leadership at Local Level.
Author: Jaap de Visser

The second pillar of new local government has been erected: on 18 December 1998 the President signed the Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998 into law. This Act, which provides for the establishment of a new generation municipalities, came into operation on 1 February 1999.

From the Courts: Elections for, and Voting in, the Council: Recent decisions.
Author: Jaap de Visser

In less than two years time, South African citizens will for the first time elect their municipal councils in a fully democratic manner. At present, local government is in a transitional period and so is the law on elections for, and voting in, the municipal council. Many disputes, relating to this topic, found their way to court. it is important to look at how the courts see this transition and how they resolved thorny issues such as the role of minority parties in executive committees, traditional leaders in the council and the problem of councillors who the municipality money. This article deals with some of the questions on this topic that were raised in court.

From SALGA: Legal and Constitutional Working Group
Author: Kishore Harie

The South African Local Government Association (SALGA), the body representing the local government sphere nationally, as well as its provincial affiliates have recognised the need to ensure that organised local government plays a meaningful role in shaping legislation transforming local government.

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