South African roundtable discusses local governance

Participants at South African roundtable discuss local governance February 8th and 9th in Cape Town.

On February 8 and 9, a country roundtable held in Cape Town, South Africa, considered the current and future challenges facing local governments and metropolitan regions. Academics, government officials and politicians considered issues such as governance, political culture and finance at the local level, the role of district municipalities, emerging trends, and intergovernmental planning. The participants were also addressed on by keynote speaker the Honourable Lechesa Tsenoli, Member of Parliament and Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Provincial & Local Government.

The roundtable, part of the Global Dialogue on Federalism, was organized by Jaap de Visser and the Community Law Centre of the University of the Western Cape. Participants included: Dr. Pravine Naidoo (Municipal Manager: Makana Municipality), Ms. Geraldine Mettler (Director: Governance, Department of Local Government, Gauteng), Themba Fosi (Manager: Intergovernmental Relations, Department of Provincial and Local Government), Dr Vuyo Mlokoti (Chairperson: Municipal Demarcation Board), Andre Olivier (ODA), Ashraf Adam (Partner MCA), Prof. Nico Steytler, (Director, Community Law Centre), Derek Powell (Deputy Director-General, Department of Provincial and Local Government), Sithole Mbanga (Chief Executive Officer, South African Cities Network), Dr. Sihle Moon (SALGA Western Cape), Jaya Josie (Deputy-Chair, Fiscal and Financial Commission), Johan Leibbrandt (Deputy City Manager: Strategic Services, Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality), Andrew Boraine (Chief Executive, Cape Town Partnership), Rama Naidoo (Director: Democracy & Development Programme), Reuben Baatjies (Researcher: Community Law Centre), Annette Christmas (Researcher: Community Law Centre), Yonatan Fessha (Doctoral intern: Community Law Centre), Omo Akintan (Research intern: Community Law Centre), Meghan McDermott (Research intern: Community Law Centre), Quinton Kuhn (Department of Local Government, Gauteng).

Other Global Dialogue roundtables on the same theme will be held in Austria and Mexico. Previous roundtables were held in London, Canada; Jos, Nigeria; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; New Delhi, India; Bern, Switzerland; in Chicago, US; Berlin, Germany; Madrid, Spain; and in Sydney, Australia. Later in 2007, an international roundtable will be held, followed by the publication of a book. The local government theme is the Forum’s sixth in the Global Dialogue series.

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