Maluti-a-Phofung Local Municipality

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Maluti-a-Phofung

ThabaDimahlwa
Official seal of Maluti-a-Phofung
Seal
Location in the Free State
Location in the Free State
CountrySouth Africa
ProvinceFree State
DistrictThabo Mofutsanyane
SeatPhuthaditjhaba
Wards35
Government
 • TypeMunicipal council
 • MayorGilbert Mokotso (ANC)
Area
 • Total4,338 km2 (1,675 sq mi)
Population
 (2018)[2]
 • Total920,784
 • Density210/km2 (550/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)
 • Black African98.2%
 • Coloured0.2%
 • Indian/Asian0.2%
 • White1.3%
First languages (2011)
 • Sotho82.5%
 • Zulu10.8%
 • Afrikaans2.0%
 • English1.5%
 • Other3.2%
Time zoneUTC+2 (SAST)
Municipal codeFS194

Maluti-a-Phofung Local Municipality is an administrative area in the Thabo Mofutsanyane District of the Free State in South Africa. It encompasses substantially all of the former bantustan of QwaQwa, except for the small enclave (detached portion) at Botshabelo.[4][5] The population is almost entirely Southern Sotho.[5] The municipality is named after the Drakensberg mountains (known as "Maluti" in Sesotho). The peak in Qwaqwa is known as the Sentinel, which is called "Phofung" in Sesotho.[6]

Problems[edit]

Maluti-a-Phofung is one of the very very poorer municipalities in the Free State; as of 2011 over 82% live below the poverty line.[4] Prior to 1994, the area was relatively prosperous with over 250,000 people employed in the textile and furniture industries, mostly at low wages.[4] The new South African government terminated industrial subsidies. That and labor agitation for higher wages made the factories uneconomic, and over the next decade most of the factories closed.[4] The last one closed in 2010.[4] At present government is the largest employer followed by a weak retail employment. The municipality itself has been in substantial debt for decades, and owes a considerable debt to both the regional water and electrical utilities (R3,769 million).[7][8]

Municipal services[edit]

The failure to deliver adequate municipal services has been a chronic problem since at least 2000.[7][9][10][11][12][13] As a result, there have been a number of protests by the populace, among which was the one in Harrismith in 2004.[10]

In 2018, local residents held a mass protest concerning the failure to provide municipal services.[7] The protest turned into a riot, shopping malls were looted,[7][14] and one man was fatally shot.[15] As a result, Cogta (the Free State Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs) intervened and administration was removed from the mayor and local council and placed directly under Cogta,[16][17] a move welcomed by the South African Municipal Workers' Union.[18]

Administration[edit]

The municipal council consists of sixty-nine members elected by mixed-member proportional representation. Thirty-five councillors are elected by first-past-the-post voting in thirty-five wards, while the remaining thirty-four are chosen from party lists so that the total number of party representatives is proportional to the number of votes received. In the election of 3 August 2016 the African National Congress (ANC) won a majority of forty-seven seats on the council.

Election results[edit]

The following table shows the results of the election.[19][20]

Party Votes Seats
Ward List Total % Ward List Total
ANC 65,118 63,428 128,546 67.4 35 12 47
Economic Freedom Fighters 11,774 11,941 23,715 12.4 0 9 9
Democratic Alliance 7,158 7,258 14,416 7.6 0 5 5
Dikwankwetla Party 4,851 5,228 10,079 5.3 0 4 4
All Unemployment Labour Alliance 3,416 2,638 6,054 3.2 0 2 2
African Independent Congress 689 2,620 3,309 1.7 0 1 1
African People's Convention 444 637 1,081 0.6 0 1 1
ACDP 487 491 978 0.5 0 0 0
Freedom Front Plus 380 278 658 0.3 0 0 0
IFP 286 294 580 0.3 0 0 0
Independent 473 473 0.3 0 0
African People's Socialist Party 175 193 368 0.2 0 0 0
Congress of the People 241 241 0.1 0 0 0
United Residents Front 63 168 231 0.1 0 0 0
Total 95,555 95,174 190,729 100.0 35 34 69
Spoilt votes 2,106 2,454 4,560

2019 municipal by-elections[edit]

In 2019, the African National Congress (ANC) expelled sixteen of its municipal councillors (fifteen ward councillors and one PR councillor) for defying a Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) decision by siding with opposition parties to remove executive mayor Vusi Tshabalala. All fifteen ward councillors contested the by-elections as independent candidates in their respective wards on 28 August 2019, of whom ten were elected. The ANC managed to retain five wards, despite strenuous canvassing by the provincial leadership and former premier Ace Magashule. The table below depicts the new composition of the council.[21][22]

Party Ward PR list Total
ANC 25 12 37
Independent 10 0 10
Economic Freedom Fighters 0 9 9
Democratic Alliance 0 5 5
Dikwankwetla Party 0 4 4
All Unemployment Labour Alliance 0 2 2
African Independent Congress 0 1 1
African People's Convention 0 1 1
Total 35 34 69

Main places[edit]

The 2001 census divided the municipality into the following main places:[23]

Place Code Area (km2) Population Most spoken language
42nd Hill 41501 2.81 16,077 Zulu
Bolata 41502 33.46 29,932 Sotho
Harrismith 41503 136.14 6,345 Afrikaans
Intabazwe 41504 0.82 3,685 Zulu
Kestell 41505 13.54 889 Afrikaans
Mabolela 41506 25.52 23,727 Sotho
Matsieng 41508 79.62 23,858 Sotho
Monontsha 41509 45.81 50,438 Sotho
Namahadi 41510 59.58 86,965 Sotho
Phomolong 41511 16.51 6,413 Sotho
Phuthaditjhaba 41512 38.48 53,175 Sotho
Thaba Bosiu 41513 43.64 8,131 Sotho
Thaba Tshweu 41514 109.54 8,876 Sotho
Thibela 41515 31.30 5,039 Sotho
Tlholong 41516 1.15 4,824 Sotho
Tshiame 41517 9.24 12,963 Sotho
Witsieshoek 41518 52.41 4,307 Sotho
Remainder of the municipality 41507 3,721.58 15,142 Sotho

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Office Of The Executive Mayor". Archived from the original on 19 March 2012. Retrieved 18 September 2013. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ a b "Statistics by place". Statistics South Africa. Retrieved 27 September 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Statistics by place". Statistics South Africa. Retrieved 27 September 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ a b c d e Payne, Teigue (18 August 2011). "Lots of factories, no jobs". Mail and Guardian. Johannesburg. Archived from the original on 8 September 2011.
  5. ^ a b "Southern Sotho". Global Security. 2000. Archived from the original on 18 March 2017. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  6. ^ South African Languages - Place names
  7. ^ a b c d Morapela, Katleho (6 February 2018). "Maluti-A-Phofung Municipal Mayor to take the heat for #QwaqwaProtests". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 6 February 2018.
  8. ^ http://www.eskom.co.za/IR2019/Documents/Eskom_2019_integrated_report.pdf
  9. ^ Leburu, Diemiso (20 October 2009). "Strong police presence in Intabazwe township". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 22 February 2018.
  10. ^ a b "Teenager dies after Harrismith protest". Mail and Guardian. Johannesburg. 31 August 2004. Archived from the original on 22 February 2018.
  11. ^ Morapela, Katleho (1 June 2017). "Water and sewage problems in Maluti-A-Phofung persists". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 22 February 2018.
  12. ^ Mogotsi, Moeketsi (16 March 2017). "Public Protector draws attention to Maluti-a-Phofung". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 16 March 2017.
  13. ^ Xaba, Thandi (4 August 2015). "Maluti-a-Phofung looks like 'a nuclear waste-land'". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 22 February 2018.
  14. ^ "Setsing Shopping Complex looted during #QwaqwaProtests". OFM. Bloemfontein. 6 February 2018. Archived from the original on 22 February 2018.
  15. ^ Motse, Olebogeng (8 February 2018). "FS man shot dead in #QwaqwaProtests". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 8 February 2018.
  16. ^ Mtebele, Nomaqhawe (11 February 2018). "MEC marks Maluti-a-Phofung for administration". OFM (Central Media Group (Pty) Ltd.). Archived from the original on 11 February 2018.
  17. ^ "Appointment aimed at stabilising affairs". News 24. 21 February 2018. Archived from the original on 22 March 2018.
  18. ^ Morapela, Katleho (12 February 2018). "Samwu states Maluti-A-Phofung should rather be dissolved". OFM. Bloemfontein. Archived from the original on 12 February 2018.
  19. ^ "Results Summary – All Ballots: Maluti A Phofung" (PDF). Independent Electoral Commission. Retrieved 25 December 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  20. ^ "Seat Calculation Detail: Maluti A Phofung" (PDF). Independent Electoral Commission. Retrieved 25 December 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  21. ^ Marrian, Natasha (29 August 2019). "Independent candidates snatch wards from the ANC in embattled Maluti-a-Phofung". Mail & Guardian. Retrieved 29 August 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  22. ^ Cilliers, Charles. DA wins nothing in Free State by-elections, while independents give ANC a bloody nose, The Citizen, 29 August 2019. Retrieved on 29 August 2019.
  23. ^ Lookup Tables - Statistics South Africa

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 28°33′04″S 29°04′48″E / 28.55111°S 29.08000°E / -28.55111; 29.08000