More seats projected in the Gauteng Legislature
Swelling population in Gauteng warrants the increase of the number of seats in the Provincial Legislature. This was an assertion made by the Speaker, NtombiMekgwe.
Speaking recently during the tabling of the budget vote speech, Mekgwe told the house that Legislature will soon embark on the process of taking further steps to amend the Electoral Act to increase its number of seats from 73 to a maximum of 80.
“As at the year 2016 the population of Gauteng was estimated at around 13 million and in terms of the formula in the Constitution and Electoral Act, the Gauteng Provincial Legislature should have been entitled to the maximum of seats being 80 as per applicable legislation,” said Mekgwe.
She also highlighted that the Gauteng Legislature has a concluding view that there was a limitation with regards to the Electoral Act on the determination of the number of seats of the provincial legislature and that the Act does not make provision for instances where there is population increases and or decreases due to factors such as migration to other provinces.
“The said provision is therefore inequitable and disadvantages those provinces which have experienced an increase in their populations in that they do not have a scope to increase the number of their MPLs to correspond with the population increases and to be at the maximum envisaged in the Constitution as in the case of
The Speaker also pointed out that, the amendment of the Act, could also benefit many other provincial legislatures whose population has also increased since 1999.