Metro Council will be smaller after 2016 Local Government Elections

SEPTEMBER 11, 2014

The number of councillors on the Nelson Mandela Bay council could be cut from the current 120 to 109 after the 2016 Local Government elections.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister, Pravin Gordhan, has published formulae for the determination of the number of councillors on each municipal council.

The formulae were published in the Government Gazette on September 9.

The formula for Category A municipalities which includes Nelson Mandela Bay is: y = (x divided by 10 000) + 50.

Y represents the number of councillors and x the number of registered voters on the municipality’s segment of the national common voters roll on March 5, 2014.

According to figures on the Independent Electoral Commission’s (IEC) website there were 592 749 registered voters at the time of the last national and provincial poll in April this year.

Substituting this figure for “x” in the formula will mean the number of seats on the Nelson Mandela Bay Council will be reduced from 120 to 109.

The Gazette states that in the calculation fractions are “to be disregarded”.

Reducing the number of councillors serving on the metro council will also have a financial impact as the cost of each ordinary councillor is R420 000 a year.

This would mean that the budget for councillors’ salaries and allowances would be cut by R4.6 million a year.

The cuts are also going to be felt in the other Eastern Cape’s metro, Buffalo City where the number of councillors will be reduced from 100 to 89 in terms of the formula.

Not all the metros are going to be negatively affected and some will in fact gain councillors.

In Cape Town, for example, the number of seats on the Council will increase from 221 to 241.

Eastern Cape councils are likely to be affected negatively because of the drop in population reflected in the 2011 Cen-sus.

A different formula is applied to Category B municipalities and in Kouga, for example, the number of councillors will decrease from 29 to 28. - metrominutes


CAPTION: Port Elizabeth town hall. IMAGE sourced from