MDB CALLS FOR OBJECTIONS ON ELECTORAL WARDS

The MDB has, after consideration of inputs received from communities, delimited wards for all Batch 1 Municipalities, in terms of schedule 1 of the Municipal Structures Act.

Wards have been published in Provincial Gazettes, any person aggrieved by the determination of municipal wards may within 14 days of publication of the Provincial Gazette, submit objections in writing to the Board.

Written objections can be sent through the following platforms:

  • registry@demarcation.org.za
  • Fax: 086 524 8643

The gazettes are available on: www.demarcation.org.za

Provincial gazettes were published on different dates as reflected in the table below:

Province Publication Date Gazette No Notice No Closing Date
Eastern Cape 03 August 2020 4426 103 16 August 2020
Kwazulu Natal 06 August 2020 2201 73 19 August 2020
Mpumalanga 07 August 2020 3179 77 20 August 2020
Gauteng 12 August 2020 138 310 25 August 2020

HAVE YOUR SAY, SUBMIT YOUR WRITTEN PROPOSALS BEFORE THE DEADLINE

The MDB is currently in the process of delimiting wards for the next local government elections. Due to the declaration of the national lockdown, not all Municipalities were consulted by end of April as planned.

Citizens from Municipalities where public consultations were conducted referred to as Batch 1, are requested to submit their written submissions on how their wards should be configured by 31 May 2020. These are most Municipalities in Kwazulu-Natal, Eastern Cape, Western Cape, Mpumalanga and Ekurhuleni metro in Gauteng.

Citizens from Municipalities where public consultations were suspended referred to as Batch 2, are requested to submit their written submissions on how their wards should be configured by not later than 31 July 2020. These are all Municipalities in Limpopo, North West, Free State and Northern Cape, most municipalities in Gauteng and a few municipalities in Eastern Cape and KwaZulu Natal and Knysna municipality in the Western Cape.

Written proposals can be sent through the following platforms:

•         E-mail: registry@demarcation.org.za

•         WhatsApp: 072 819 8220

•         Fax: 012 342 2480

Submission forms are available on the website or on request by calling (012) 342 2481.

For more information visit www.demarcation.org.za.

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION DURING LOCKDOWN

The MDB remains fully committed to citizen engagement, hence it is doing everything in its power to ensure that members of the public continue to have a say on how their wards should be configured.

After a thorough analysis and consideration of the overall impact of the lockdown on the overall ward delimitation programme, a revised programme was developed with new timeframes as indicated below:

The submission date for written submissions has been extended from 15 May 2020 to 31 May 2020 for Batch 1 municipalities as listed in Annexure A of Circular 4/2020. Members of the public and all stakeholders who have not yet submitted their submissions have until then to submit their submissions on how their wards should be configured.

In June 2020, the MDB will consider all submissions (Batch 1) and determine wards for publication in provincial Gazettes. All wards will be published in provincial Gazettes in July 2020. Anyone aggrieved by the wards as published will be allowed 14 days to submit written objections. In August 2020, the MDB will consider all objections received (Batch1) determine and publish final wards in provincial Gazettes. Final wards for Batch1 will be handed over to the IEC by September 2020.

With regards to municipalities where the public meetings were suspended (Batch 2) as listed in Annexure B of circular 4/2020, the period for making written submissions will be extended to 31 July 2020.

In August 2020, the MDB will consider all written submissions (Batch 2) and determine wards for publication in provincial Gazettes. All wards will be published in provincial Gazettes in September 2020. Anyone aggrieved by the wards as published will be allowed 14 days to submit written objections. In October 2020, the MDB will consider all objections received (Batch 2) determine and publish final wards in provincial Gazettes. Final wards for Batch 2 will be handed over to the IEC by November 2020.

Ward delimitation and public consultation information e.g. draft maps and submission forms has been distributed to all municipalities and are also available on the MDB website www.demarcation.org.za or on request by calling the MDB at 012 342 2481 for assistance on any query related to ward delimitation.

These measures are taken to deepen democracy and to ensure adequate participation of community members in the process.  The MDB is aware that conditions on the ground are fluid and are changing all the time due to the uncertainty brought about by the country’s efforts to fight against the spread of the Corona Virus.

In this regard, the MDB will provide the necessary updates in line with regulations imposed during the lockdown period. The MDB appeals to communities to stay home, wash their hands, practice physical distancing and wear a mask when in public spaces.

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION DURING THE LOCKDOWN PERIOD

We commend the Government for their relentless efforts to mitigate against potentially devastating effects of Covid-19. We are proud for the leadership who understand and care for the well-being and health of all South African citizens during this difficult time.

Since the lockdown will be gradually lifted, we appeal to everyone to adhere to the regulations in place to flatten the curve. It is therefore the responsibility of each and every one of us to stay at home, stay safe and pull together to fight the pandemic.

Undoubtedly the advent of the novel covid-19 has instigated an unprecedented socio-economic downturn which will completely impact the way business is conducted and profoundly on how people engage with each other, professionally and personally. It is business unusual, the way we interact with our stakeholders will change immensely.

Whilst we are exploring other means to ensure that stakeholders are able to access information, we encourage all stakeholders to utilise online platforms such as the MDB website and social media platforms to access information.

According Circular 3 of 2020 issued just before the commencement of the lockdown, the date for submission of written submissions for ward delimitation is extended to 15 May 2020 until further notice.

As the President has alluded, we must not give up now, we must stay strong, stay home and stay safe.

 #StayHomeSaveLives

ROADMAP OF THE WARD DELIMITATION PROCESS

Communities and municipalities are encouraged to consult among themselves and reach a consensus. Their proposal should be aligned to the criteria for ward delimitation and can be submitted by not later than 30 April 2020 to registry@demarcation.org.za. The ward submission form can be obtained on the MDB website www.demarcation.org.za

After the public consultation sessions, the MDB will consider all public proposals received and delimit wards. The wards will be published in provincial gazettes for objections by May 2020. Any aggrieved person will have 14 days to object.

The MDB will consider all objections, and publish its final decisions in provincial gazettes by July 2020. The MDB will then handover the final ward boundaries to the IEC in August 2020 to start preparing for the 2021 local elections.

We encourage citizens to seize this opportunity to express their views on how their wards should be configured.

Lookout for Schedules for the remaining Provinces: Gauteng, North West, Limpopo, Northern Cape and Free State on www.demarcation.org.za

REFLECTIONS ON THE PUBLIC CONSULTATION SESSIONS #WARDDELIMITATION2020

As we enter the fifth week of the public consultation sessions on draft electoral wards, we would like to reflect on the month that was, and take you along the journey on how the sessions fared.

It should be noted that, despite disruptions experienced the process was completed. The MDB will not be in a position to reconvene the meetings that were disrupted however, community members and Municipalities are advised to consult among themselves and reach a consensus and submit the ward submission form by 30 April 2020.

A synopsis of the sessions from 03 February to 28 February 2020 is as follows:

ProvinceNumber of Municipalities VisitedNumber of Meeting ConvenedNumber of Meetings DisruptedMeetings Postponed
Eastern Cape3321One meeting in Amahlathi Local Municipality disruptedOne meeting in Mnquma Local Municipality postponed to 25 March 2020 (Town hall Butterworth):

Reason for postponing:
Community protests against the municipality
Kwa Zulu Natal4427All meetings were convened successfully.

One meeting in Edumbe Local Municipality postponed to 26 March 2020 (Dumbe Community Hall):

Reason for postponing:
Community protests against the municipality.
Mpumalanga1712
Four Meetings disrupted:
1. Mbombela Local Municipality
2. Emalahleni Local Municipality
3. Thaba Chweu Local Municipality
4. Chief Albert Luthuli Municipality
None
Western Cape2516One meeting disrupted:
1. Saldanha Bay Local Municipality
None
Total1197462

HAVE YOUR SAY #WardDelimitation2020

The MDB will be entering the fourth week of the public consultation sessions on the draft sets of wards #WardDelimitation2020. As such, it is imperative to reiterate that, the MDB will not conduct any municipal boundary re-determinations until after the 2021 Local Government Elections (LGE). Communities can however submit their proposals now but the process will re-open after the 2021 LGE.

As alluded above, the MDB is currently embarking on a nation-wide public consultation on draft electoral wards in preparation for the 2021 local government elections. The consultations started in February 2020 and will conclude in April 2020.

It is important for communities to note that, the maps which are available are DRAFTS for consultation purposes only, they have no legal status. The consultations are meant to solicit inputs from communities on how the wards should be configured based on the norm of respective municipalities. Draft maps are obtainable on MDB website.

Communities should also note that, the MDB has no influence in the determination of the formulae for the determination of the number of councillors nor the determination of the number of councillors, and therefore appeals to all stakeholders not to ask the MDB to change the formula, increase or decrease the number of Councillors nor the number of wards.

We therefore call on members of the public to actively participate and express their views on how their wards should be configured.

There are two options available for communities to express their views, one is being part of the physical meetings. The second option is to fill in the ward submission form which can be obtained on the MDB website www.demarcation.org.za

Communities and municipalities are encouraged to consult among themselves and reach a consensus. Their proposal should be aligned to the criteria for ward delimitation and can be submitted by not later than 30 April 2020 to registry@demarcation.org.za

With regards to the timeframes of the ward delimitation process, after the public meetings in February to April 2020, the MDB will consider all public proposals received and delimit wards. The wards will be published in provincial gazettes for objections by May 2020. Any aggrieved person will have 14 days to object.

The MDB will then consider all objections, and publish its final decisions in provincial gazettes by July 2020. As indicated previously, the MDB will then handover the final ward boundaries to the IEC in August 2020 to start preparing for the 2021 local elections.

MDB WARNS COMMUNITIES OF A HOAX WARD CONSULTATIVE MEETING

The Municipal Demarcation Board (MDB) has been alerted of a hoax message that is purported to have been released by the MDB, inviting the community members of Eersterust to a ward consultative meeting today, 18 February 2020 at 18:30 (Eersterust Civic Centre).

The community is cautioned to ignore and regard the invitation as a hoax. It should be noted that, the sessions in Gauteng will only commence in March 2020. The meeting for the City of Tshwane is on 18 March 2020 at Sammy Marks Council Chamber at 09:00.

MDB DISCOURAGES DISRUPTION OF PUBLIC CONSULTATION SESSIONS

The MDB is gravely concerned about the disruption that erupted during the public consultation session at Mbombela Municipality earlier today, 06 February 2020. The well attended meeting was unfortunately disrupted by a group of youth who claimed to be coming from Umjindini. They shouted and used vulgar language in expressing their demand for the former Umjindini municipality to be ‘divorced’ from Mbombela municipality. The youth further cited lack of service delivery as the main reason for their disgruntlement.

The MDB is currently embarking on a nation-wide public consultations sessions on the draft sets of electoral wards in preparation of the 2021 local government elections.

“If communities continue in this manner and disrupt the MDB meetings, they will miss an opportunity to engage with us however they can still fill forms accessible on the MDB website and submit their proposals by April 2020”,said Ms Jane Thupana,

Member of the Board.

Although there were no injuries sustained, amid damage to property and theft, the MDB appeals for cooperation as the public consultation sessions will run until April 2020.  Any person who wilfully disrupts or threatens the proceedings, will be committing a punishable offence as provided for in the Municipal Demarcation Act. In addition, the disruptions disadvantage ordinary members of the public who want to participate in having a say in how their wards would be reconfigured in preparation for the 2021 Local government elections.

STATE OF READINESS FOR THE PUBLIC CONSULTATIONS ON DRAFT ELECTORAL WARDS IN PREPARATION FOR THE 2021 LOCAL GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS

The MDB briefed the media on Thursday, 23 January 2020 brief on the upcoming public consultations on draft electoral wards, in preparation of the 2021 local government elections (LGE). The nation-wide public consultations will kick-start from February to April 2020.

More information on the ward delimitation process including a copy of the draft sets of wards, draft ward maps and the schedule of meetings etc is available on the MDB website.