South Africa is a constitutional democracy with a three-tier system of government and an independent judiciary. The national, provincial and local levels of government all have legislative and executive authority in their own spheres, and are defined in the Constitution as "distinctive, interdependent and interrelated". Operating at both national and provincial levels are advisory bodies drawn from South Africa's traditional leaders. It is a stated intention in the Constitution that the country be run on a system of co-operative governance. Parliament Legislative authority is vested in Parliament, which is situated in Cape Town and consists of two houses, the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces.
South Africa has nine provinces: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo Province, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West and Western Cape. Each province has its own provincial government, with legislative power vested in a provincial legislature and executive power vested in a provincial premier and exercised together with the other members of a provincial executive council.
The national government is composed of three inter-connected branches:
- Legislative: Parliament, consisting of the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces
- Executive: The President, who is both Head of State and Head of Government
- Judicial: The Constitutional Court, the Supreme Court of Appeal, and the High Court
All bodies of the South African government are subject to the rule of the Constitution, which is the supreme law in South Africa.
Local government in South Africa consists of municipalities of various types. The largest metropolitan areas are governed by metropolitan municipalities, while the rest of the country is divided into district municipalities, each of which consists of several local municipalities.
For more information regarding departmental structures, please click on the following links:
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