What is the Role of Ward Committees in a Municipality?

In this video we define the nature, functions, and responsibilities of ward committees. This video is part of the Civics Academy Local Government Series in which we explore how local government functions and how we, as responsive citizens, can engage it. This video is also available in Afrikaans and IsiXhosa.

A ward is an area in a metro or local municipality, which has clearly defined boundaries. A ward committee is a democratically elected body which represents a wide variety of community interests and meets regularly under the chairperson who is the ward councillor.

Committees can have up to 10 members and must represent a variety of interest groups. They may also be elected on a geographical basis. These  committees are a link between the municipality and the community.

In a committee there should be at least 4 meeting in a year, whereby the ward councillors must report back to their wards on a quarterly basis. There are other instances when ward committees must meet. Committee members do not receive payment but may be reimbursed for out of pocket expenses.

Essentially, a ward committee should be an effective way of spreading information concerning what your community wants from municipal council and what council is doing. Make it work.

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