REGOROGILE – The Public Education Office of Parliament was at Thabazimbi Local Municipality to present “An Introduction to Parliament and Public Participation” workshop for Public Participation Practitioners, Community Development Workers (CDW), Ward councilors, Ward Committees and other community structures.
The purpose of this workshop is to engender a basic understanding of Parliament, its role, lawmaking and how to participate in its various processes. It also seeks to empower community structures so that they may serve their community better in matters pertaining to Parliament.
The three spheres of government was outlined in that workshop being the National, Provincial and Local. The Republic of South Africa is a constitutional democracy with a three-tier system of government and an independent judiciary, operating in a nearly unique system that combines aspects of parliamentary and presidential systems.
Legislative authority is held by the Parliament of South Africa. Executive authority is vested in the President of South Africa, who is head of state and head of government, and his Cabinet. The president is elected from the Parliament to serve a fixed term. South Africa’s government differs greatly from those of other Commonwealth nations. The national, provincial and local levels of government all have legislative and executive authority in their own spheres, and is defined in the South African 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.
The government is undertaken by three inter-connected arms of government:
Legislature: The National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces
Executive: The President, who is both Head of State and Head of Government
Judiciary: 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. These are but some of the issues that were highlighted during the workshop.