The 2016 municipal elections or Local Government Elections (LGE) were held on Wednesday, August 3. This year, they will be held on Monday, November 1.
This will be the first time in democratic South Africa that elections are held on a Monday, and not on the traditional Wednesday.
The municipal elections are held every five years in order for councillors to be elected. The councillors are then responsible for governing a municipality for the next five years.
The councillors serve on the local, metropolitan or district councils that ensure the delivery of services that impact the daily lives of citizens in their areas, including water, electricity and sanitation.
In 2016, there were 17 municipalities, 24 wards, 118 voting districts, 22 612 voting stations and 26.3 million (26 333 353) registered voters.
The number of parties contesting the elections were 205. A total of 140 parties did not contest the 2016 Local Government Elections. [WHY]
The number of wards increased from 3 754 in the 2000 Local Government Elections to 3 895 wards in 2006. This was up to 4 277 wards in 2011 and higher to 4 392 in 2016.
The voter turnout in the 2016 LGE was 57.94%.