… preaty too slow!
In 1993, in the process of reversing the wrongs of the colonial and apartheid-times, 843 municipalities were created. These constitute the 9 provinces [Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng, North-West Province, KwaZulu-Natal, Free State, Eastern Cape, Northern Cape, Western Cape] that were instituted in 1994.
After the 2000 municipal elections, the number of municipalities was reduced to 284. There were also 16 cross-boundary municipalities that were created affecting five provinces.
After a further review in 2006 the number of municipalities was reduced from 284 to 283. Further change was implemented in 2011 when 283 municipalities were reduced to 278.
The recent proposal to review the infrastructural and demographic determinants and further consolidate the areas and regions throughout to about 267 municipalities after the 2016 municipal elections is, indeed, an expression of the process to go on creating viable avenues and structures of living and developing together in democracy. It is one of the crucial measures that are long overdue towards addressing the plight of non-viable municipalities.