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The nine
provinces of South Africa South Africa is divided into nine provinces. On the eve of the 1994 general election, South Africa's former homelands, also known as Bantustans, were reintegrated and the four existing provinces were divided into nine. The twelfth, thirteenth and ...
are divided into 52 districts (sing. district, tn, kgaolo; st, setereke; nso, selete; af, distrikte; zu, isifunda; nr, isiyingi; xh, isithili; ss, sigodzi; ve, tshiá¹±iriki; ts, xifundza), which are either
metropolitan Metropolitan may refer to: * Metropolitan area, a region consisting of a densely populated urban core and its less-populated surrounding territories * Metropolitan borough, a form of local government district in England * Metropolitan county, a type ...
or district municipalities. They are the second level of administrative division, below the provinces and (in the case of district municipalities) above the local municipalities. As a consequence of the 12th amendment of the Constitution in December 2005, which altered provincial boundaries, the number of districts was reduced from 53. Another effect of the amendment is that each district is now completely contained within a single province, thus eliminating cross-border districts. The districts also cover the entire area of the continental republic.


Types of district

There are two types of municipality at the district level. Most of the country is covered by the 44 district municipalities, which are divided into local municipalities and share responsibilities with them. The eight largest urban agglomerations are governed by metropolitan municipalities, which act as both local and district municipalities.


District municipality

A district municipality or Category C municipality is a
municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division having corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional laws to which it is subordinate. The term ''municipality'' may also mean the ...
which executes some of the functions of local government for a district. The district municipality will in turn comprise several local municipalities, with which it shares the functions of local government. Although the word
county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, Edinburgh in certain modern nations. The term is derived from the Old French ...
is not used in legislation, district municipalities are regularly referred to as such informally. The equivalent is also used in other South African languages such as "kontrei" in Afrikaans. District municipalities are seen as successors to former Regional Services Councils (RSC). The
Constitution A constitution is an aggregate of fundamental principles or established precedents that constitute the legal basis of a polity, organisation or other type of entity and commonly determine how that entity is to be governed. When these principl ...
, section 155.1.a, defines "Category C" municipalities. The Municipal Structures Act states that areas not eligible to have a
metropolitan municipality A metropolitan municipality is a type of municipality established in some countries to serve a metropolitan area. Canada In generic terms and in practical application within Canada, a metropolitan municipality is an urban local government with p ...
must have a district municipality. District municipalities have a municipality code that consists of the letters "DC" followed by a number from 1 to 48. The "DC" reflects the fact that they were originally named "District Councils".


District management areas

Currently all district municipalities are completely divided into local municipalities. However, before the alteration of municipal boundaries which occurred at the 2011 elections, some areas of the country did not fall within any local municipality. This usually occurred in areas with a very low population density, for example
national park (''Capra ibex'') in the Gran Paradiso National Park, Piedmont, Italy. The Ibex population increased tenfold since the area was declared a national park in 1922., 275x275px A national park is a park in use for conservation purposes, created and p ...
s and
nature reserve A nature reserve (also known as a natural reserve, wildlife refuge, wildlife sanctuary, biosphere reserve or bioreserve, natural or nature preserve, or nature conservation area), is a protected area of importance for flora, fauna, or features o ...
s. In these areas, which were known as District Management Areas, all local government services were provided by the district municipality.


List

The following map depicts the provinces and districts of South Africa. The district municipalities are labelled with numbers that correspond to their district code, while the metropolitan municipalities are labelled with letters that correspond to their names. Further details of the districts are listed in the table that follows the image.


Boundary alignment

Several projects are underway to align various services with the district boundaries. These include: * Magisterial districts * Police wards


Controversy

South Africa's official opposition, the
Democratic AllianceDemocratic Alliance may refer to: Current political parties *Democratic Alliance (South Africa) *DEMOS (Montenegro) *Democratic Alliance (Hong Kong) *Democratic Alliance (Ukraine) *Democratic Alliance List *Democratic Alliance Party (Haiti) *Singap ...
, believes that the districts add an unnecessary fourth layer of government (between
provinces A province is almost always an administrative division within a country or state. The term derives from the ancient Roman ''provincia'', which was the major territorial and administrative unit of the Roman Empire's territorial possessions outside ...
and
municipalities A municipality is usually a single administrative division having corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional laws to which it is subordinate. The term ''municipality'' may also mean the ...
) and has called for them to be eliminated.


See also

*
Municipalities of South Africa Local government in South Africa consists of municipalities ( tn, bommasepala; st, bomasepala; nso, bommasepala; af, munisipaliteite; zu, ngomasipala; Southern Ndebele: ''bomasipala''; xh, ngoomasipala; ss, bomasipala; ve, vhomasipala; ts, vamasipa ...
*
List of municipalities in South Africa This is a list of municipalities of South Africa. The largest metropolitan areas are governed by metropolitan municipalities, while the rest of the country is divided into district municipalities, each of which consists of several local municipali ...
*
Government of South Africa The Republic of South Africa is a parliamentary republic with three-tier system of government and an independent judiciary, operating in a parliamentary system. Legislative authority is held by the Parliament of South Africa. Executive authori ...


References


Sources


Demarcation Board
* Government Communication & Information Services (2005
Categories of municipalities
*
Parliament of the Republic of South Africa The Parliament of South Africa is South Africa's legislature; under the present Constitution of South Africa, the bicameral Parliament comprises a National Assembly and a National Council of Provinces. The current twenty-seventh Parliament was f ...
(1996
Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, Chapter 7: Local Government
*
Parliament of the Republic of South Africa The Parliament of South Africa is South Africa's legislature; under the present Constitution of South Africa, the bicameral Parliament comprises a National Assembly and a National Council of Provinces. The current twenty-seventh Parliament was f ...
(1998
Local Government: Municipal Structures Act
Act 117 of 1998.
South African Local Government Association
{{DEFAULTSORT:Districts Of South Africa Subdivisions of South Africa Lists of subdivisions of South Africa Administrative divisions in Africa, South Africa 2 Second-level administrative divisions by country, Districts, South Africa