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Rules for the Conduct of Meetings By-law, 2015
- Published in Western Cape Provincial Gazette no. 7501 on 2 October 2015
- Commenced on 2 October 2015
- [Up to date as at 28 May 2021]
Interpretation and definitions
1. InterpretationNational and provincial legislation will be given priority in the interpretation of this by-law. Any provision in this by-law that is prohibited by law or unenforceable will not in any way invalidate the validity of these rules to the extent that it is against the law or unenforceable.
2. DefinitionsIn this by-law, the Afrikaans text prevails in the event of any conflict with the English text, and unless inconsistent with the context –"code of conduct" means the code of conduct for councillors as set out in the Systems Act;"committee" means a committee established by the council in terms of section 79 and 80 of the Structures Act, or any other committee established by council for a specific purpose;"Constitution" means the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996;"council" means the municipal council of Swartland Municipality;"majority of votes" means the votes cast by the majority of members present during a meeting;"mayor" means the member appointed as executive mayor by the council in terms of the Structures Act or, in his or her absence, the executive deputy mayor;"MEC" means the member of the Executive Council responsible for local government in the Province of the Western Cape;"meeting" means a meeting of the municipal council and any committee established by the council, including the executive mayoral committee;"member" means a member of the municipal council and any committee established by the council;"member of the public" means a person who is not member of the council or any committee established by the council;"motion" means a proposal, recommendation or question on which the council must take a resolution, but excludes a motion as contemplated in rules 44 and 45;"municipality" means the Swartland Municipality established in terms of section 12 of the Structures Act, and includes any political structure, political office-bearer, councillor, duly authorised agent or any employee acting in connection with this by-law by virtue of a power vested in the municipality and delegated or sub-delegated to such political structure, political office-bearer, councillor, agent or employee;"municipal manager" means the person appointed by council in terms of section 54A of the Systems Act or his or her delegatee;"party" means a party as defined in the Structures Act;"rules" mean the provisions of this by-law;"speaker" means the member elected as chairperson of the council and the chairpersons of committees established by the council and members acting as chairperson;"supporting vote" means the vote cast by a majority of the members of the council;"Structures Act" means the Local Government: Municipal Structures Act, 1998 (Act 117 of 1998);"Systems Act" means the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act, 2000 (Act 32 of 2000); and"working day" means any day of the week, excluding Saturdays or Sundays or public holidays.
Application of by-law
5. Duty of speaker, members and members of publicThe speaker, members and members of the public must familiarise themselves with these rules.
6. Chairing of meetings
7. Commencement of meetingSubject to the provisions of rule 16, the speaker must take the chair precisely at the time for which the meeting is convened and must proceed immediately with the business of the meeting.
8. Order of business
9. Urgent mattersThe speaker, mayor or municipal manager may, at any time during the meeting and without prior notice, make any statement or introduce urgent matters.
10. Business to be disposed ofExcept as otherwise provided in this by-law, no matter not specified in the agenda of a meeting of the council shall be dealt with at such meeting.
12. Attendance of meetings
13. Leave of absence
14. Sanction for non-attendance
17. Unopposed mattersWhenever the council is requested to consider a matter before it and there is no opposition from any member, an unanimous vote must be recorded in the minutes.
18. Manner of voting
20. Unopposed business
21. Rescission of resolutions
22. Admittance of publicThe speaker must take reasonable steps to regulate public access to and public conduct at meetings.
23. Exclusion of the public and media from meetings
24. Re-admission of public and media to meetings
25. Invitation to non-memberThe speaker may invite a person who is not a member to address the council or to attend a meeting to state his or her views on a matter before the council. A time limit of 10 minutes, or any such time as may be allowed by the meeting, will apply.
Conduct in meetings
27. Conduct of non-members and members of the publicIf a non-member or member of the public misconducts himself or herself, behaves in an unseemly manner or obstructs the business of any meeting, the speaker may order that he or she should leave the meeting or be removed from the meeting.
28. Conduct of members
Rules of debate
29. Member to address chairpersonA member or a member of the public who is recognised to speak at a meeting must address the chairperson and may do so in any one of the three official languages of the Province of the Western Cape.
30. Order of priorityWhen a member wishes to address the council, he or she must first obtain the permission of the speaker and must raise his or her hand in order to obtain permission to speak.
31. Precedence of speakerWhenever the speaker addresses the meeting, all members must be silent so that the speaker may be heard without any interruption.
33. Right to speak and limitation
34. Duration of speeches
35. Re-introduction of motion or questionNo motion which has been rejected by the council and no question asked in terms of these rules and dealt with at any meeting may again be moved or asked within a period of three months of such meeting, except with the consent of the speaker.
36. Notice of motion
37. Notice of question
38. Absence of mover or questionerIn the event of the mover or questioner not being present in his place at the meeting of the council when called upon by the speaker to move a motion or ask a question standing in his name on the agenda, such motion or question shall lapse, unless the original mover or questioner has notified the speaker in writing of a substitute to move the motion or ask the question.
39. Motions or questions on matters dealt with by a committee
40. Recommendation of committee regarded as motion
42. Motion of exigency
43. Motion of course
44. Point of order
45. Point of explanationThe speaker may allow a member to raise a point of explanation, provided that such explanation shall be confined to some material part of the debate which may have been misunderstood.
46. Withdrawal of motion, amendment or question
47. Speaker’s ruling on a point of order and explanation
48. Order of debateWhen a motion is under debate at any meeting of the council, no further motion may be received, except the following –(a)that the motion be amended;(b)that the consideration of the matter be postponed;(c)that the public and the media be excluded;(d)that the public and the media be readmitted;(e)that the council now adjourns;(f)that the council adjourn for a specified time;(g)that the debate be adjourned;(h)that the matter be put to the vote;(i)that the council proceed to the next business.
49. That the motion be amended
50. That consideration of the matter be postponed
51. That the council do now adjourn to another date
52. That the council adjourn for a specified time
53. That the debate be adjourned
54. That the matter be put to the voteA member may, at the conclusion of any speech during a debate, move that the matter be now put to the vote.
55. That the matter be removed from the agenda
Process for adoption of by-law
56. Submission of draft by-lawA by-law may only be introduced by a member or the executive mayor.
57. First submission to council
58. Submission by executive mayor
59. Publication of draft by-laws
60. Consideration of draft by-laws
61. Debating procedureThe provisions regarding debating are also applicable to the legislative process.
62. Privileges and immunities for membersThe privileges and immunities of councillors of the municipality are subject to the provisions of the Western Cape Privileges and Immunities of Councillors Act, 2011 (Act 7 of 2011).
63. Municipal employees
65. Repeal of by-lawsThe By-law for the Conduct of Meetings of Swartland Municipality as published in Provincial Gazette 6199 of 14 January 2005 is hereby repealed as a whole.
66. Short title and commencementThis by-law shall be known as the By-law relating to the Rules for the Conduct of Meetings of Swartland Municipality and shall come into operation on the date of publication thereof in the Provincial Gazette.
- Entire By-law
- Chapter 1 – Interpretation and definitions
- Chapter 2 – Application of by-law
- Chapter 3 – Meetings
- Chapter 4 – Decisions
- Chapter 5 – Public access
- Chapter 6 – Conduct in meetings
Chapter 7 – Rules of debate
- 29. Member to address chairperson
- 30. Order of priority
- 31. Precedence of speaker
- 32. Relevance
- 33. Right to speak and limitation
- 34. Duration of speeches
- 35. Re-introduction of motion or question
- 36. Notice of motion
- 37. Notice of question
- 38. Absence of mover or questioner
- 39. Motions or questions on matters dealt with by a committee
- 40. Recommendation of committee regarded as motion
- 41. Questions
- 42. Motion of exigency
- 43. Motion of course
- 44. Point of order
- 45. Point of explanation
- 46. Withdrawal of motion, amendment or question
- 47. Speaker’s ruling on a point of order and explanation
- 48. Order of debate
- 49. That the motion be amended
- 50. That consideration of the matter be postponed
- 51. That the council do now adjourn to another date
- 52. That the council adjourn for a specified time
- 53. That the debate be adjourned
- 54. That the matter be put to the vote
- 55. That the matter be removed from the agenda
- Chapter 8 – Process for adoption of by-law
- Chapter 9 – General provisions
History of this By-law
2 October 2015 this versionPublished in Western Cape Provincial Gazette no. 7501By-law commences.