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Location in the Western Cape
|• Type||Municipal council|
|• Mayor||Harry Levendal (DA)|
|• Total||2,011 km2 (776 sq mi)|
|• Density||44/km2 (120/sq mi)|
|Racial makeup (2011)|
|• Black African||29.5%|
|First languages (2011)|
|Time zone||UTC+2 (SAST)|
The municipality covers an area of 2,011 square kilometres (776 sq mi) on the coastal plain between the Outeniqua Mountains and the sea. It stretches from the Gourits River in the west to beyond the Great Brak River in the east. It is drained by the Gourits, Hartenbos, Little Brak and Great Brak Rivers. It abuts on the Hessequa Municipality to the west, the Oudtshoorn Municipality to the north and the George Municipality to the east.
According to the 2011 census the municipality has a population of 89,430 people in 28,025 households. Of this population, 43.5% describe themselves as "Coloured", 29.5% as "Black African", and 25.5% as "White". The first language of 67.6% of the population is Afrikaans, while 21.5% speak Xhosa, 6.5% speak English and 1.3% speak Sotho.
The principal town is Mossel Bay on the Cape St Blaize peninsula, which as of 2011 has a population of 59,031. Northeast of Mossel Bay is a string of coastal resorts along the shores of the bay: Hartenbos (pop. 4,196), Little Brak River (pop. 2,037), Reebok (pop. 1,112), Tergniet (pop. 1,264) and Great Brak River (pop. 10,619). To the southwest of Mossel Bay are the smaller coastal villages of Boggomsbaai (pop. 69) and Vleesbaai (pop. 193). Herbertsdale (pop. 666), Brandwag (pop. 1,470) and Friemersheim (pop. 1,235) are situated in the interior of the municipality closer to the mountains.
The municipal council consists of twenty-seven members elected by mixed-member proportional representation. Fourteen councillors are elected by first-past-the-post voting in fourteen wards, while the remaining thirteen are chosen from party lists so that the total number of party representatives is proportional to the number of votes received.
Marie Ferreira of the Democratic Alliance (DA) became executive mayor after the March 2006 local government elections when the DA formed a coalition with Independent Civic Organisation of South Africa (ICOSA) since no single party had obtained an outright majority. The DA held 10 seats in the (then) 23-seat council followed by 8 for the African National Congress (ANC) and 3 for ICOSA. Following the September 2007 floor-crossing window the DA gained an outright majority when 3 councillors defected to the DA resulting in the DA holding 13 seats out of 23 while the ANC lost a seat to the DA and currently has 7. ICOSA lost its representation in the council when 2 councillors defected to the DA and its one ward councillor became an independent.
In the election of 18 May 2011 the DA won a majority of sixteen seats on the council. In the election of 3 August 2016 the DA increased its majority to seventeen seats. The following table shows the results of the 2016 election.
|African National Congress||9,893||9,872||19,765||26.4%||4||3||7|
|Independent Civic Organisation||1,908||1,764||3,672||4.9%||0||1||1|
|Freedom Front Plus||1,265||1,335||2,600||3.5%||0||1||1|
|African Christian Democratic Party||855||799||1,654||2.2%||0||1||1|
|Economic Freedom Fighters||460||456||916||1.2%||0||0||0|
|D'Almeida Civic Association||135||177||312||0.4%||0||0||0|
|Plaaslike Besorgde Inwoners||27||65||92||0.1%||0||0||0|
|South Africa Civics||5||26||31||0.0%||0||0||0|
|Total votes cast||37,789||37,781||75,570|
In 2007, crime figures revealed that Mossel Bay recorded the lowest in the country for crime figures. Between August 2006 and July 2007, there were no murders, hijackings, or business robberies. The low unemployment rate has been cited as a factor for the low crime rates.