Vhembe District Municipality

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Vhembe
District municipality
Official seal of Vhembe
Seal
Location in Limpopo
Location in Limpopo
Coordinates: 22°56′S 30°28′E / 22.933°S 30.467°E / -22.933; 30.467Coordinates: 22°56′S 30°28′E / 22.933°S 30.467°E / -22.933; 30.467
Country South Africa
Province Limpopo
Seat Thohoyandou
Local municipalities
Government[2]
 • Type Municipal council
 • Mayor Florence Radzilani[1]
Area
 • Total 25,597 km2 (9,883 sq mi)
Population (2011)[3]
 • Total 1,294,722
 • Density 51/km2 (130/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)[3]
 • Black African 98.2%
 • Coloured 0.1%
 • Indian/Asian 0.4%
 • White 1.1%
First languages (2011)[4]
 • Venda 67.2%
 • Tsonga 24.8%
 • Northern Sotho 1.6%
 • Afrikaans 1.3%
 • Other 5.1%
Time zone UTC+2 (SAST)
Municipal code DC34

Vhembe is one of the 5 districts of Limpopo province of South Africa. It is the northernmost district of the country and shares its northern border with Beitbridge district in Matabeleland South, Zimbabwe. Vhembe consist of all territories that were part of the former Venda Bantustan, however, two large densely populated districts of the former Tsonga homeland of Gazankulu, in particular, Hlanganani and Malamulele were also incorporated into Vhembe, hence the ethnic diversity of the District. The seat of Vhembe is Thohoyandou, the former Capital of the former Venda Bantustan. According to 2011 census, the majority of Vhembe residents, about 800 000, speak TshiVenda as their mother language, while 400 000 speak Xitsonga as their home language. However, the Tsonga people are in majority south of Levubu River and they constitute more than 85% of the population in the south of the historic river Levubu, while the Venda are in Minority south of Levubu, at 15%. The Northern Sotho speakers stands at 27 000. The district code is DC34.

History

Vhembe was originally settled by now-expired tribes of Khoisan peoples. It was later settled by the Venda people (recently migrated from what is now Matabeleland South in Zimbabwe), who constitute a majority of the population of Vhembe today. Later, from around 1820 onwards, the Tsonga people started to invade from the south east and are today a majority in the whole southern and eastern part of Vhembe, which are known today as Malamulele (in the east of Vhembe) and Hlanganani (in the south of Vhembe). At the same time, the Boer colonialists arrived in Vhembe, at around 1836. Venda communities are only found in Vhembe district and as a result, there are no existing Venda communities or villages outside the district. Vhembe means Limpopo river in the Venda language. Before the renaming of Limpopo Province in 2002, the name Vhembe was submitted to the Limpopo legislature as one of the desired name for the new Province but the majority of the members of the Legislature voted against the name Vhembe in favour of the name Limpopo. The Dzata ruins in Thulamela local municipality once served as the main settlement and capital of the Venda empire which had dominated the area during the 18th century.

Boer settlement of the territory began in the late 18th century and gradually upsurged throughout the 19th century. By the turn of the century, the Soutpansberg was taken by the Boers from the Venda rulers, making it one of the last areas in the future republic of South Africa to come under white rule. During the apartheid era, the bantustan of Venda (declared independent in 1979) was established in the eastern part of the Vhembe area, and was reintegrated into the country in 1994. The former bantustan capital, Thohoyandou (named after a chief that had led the expansion of the Venda empire in the 18th century) is the current capital of the Vhembe district.

On December 11, 2008, Vhembe was declared a disaster zone by the Limpopo government due to the spread of cholera across the Zimbabwean border to the district.[5]

The Vhembe region became the Vhembe Biosphere Reserve in 2009, which was officially declared a biosphere reserve in 2011.[6] The reserve includes the Blouberg Range, the Kruger National Park, the Makgabeng Plateau, the Makuleke Wetlands, the Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape and the Soutpansberg.[7]

Geography

The main geographic feature of the district is the Soutpansberg mountains.

Neighbours

Vhembe is surrounded by:

Local municipalities

The district contains the following local municipalities:

Local municipality Population % Dominant language
Thulamela 300 000 48.72% Venda and Tsonga
Makhado 280 000 41.43% Venda and Tsonga
Malamulele Municipality 220 000 6.58% Venda and Tsonga
Musina 39 308 3.28% Venda

Demographics

The following statistics are from the census 2011 10% sample.[8]

Language Population %
Venda 861 910 67.3%
Tsonga 318 973 24.9%
Northern Sotho 19 935 1.6%
Afrikaans 16 317 1.3%
Sotho 12 369 1.0%
Other 27038 2.1%
English 12994 1.0%
Ndebele 4193 0.3%
Zulu 1 864 1.0%
Tswana 1 179 0.1%
Xhosa 660 0.1%
Swati 2 412 0.2%
Sign 1 205 0.1%

Gender

Gender Population %
Female 704 559 54.4%
Male 590 509 45.6%

Population group

Population group Population %
Black African 1 272 427 98.3%
White 14 168 1.1%
Indian/Asian 5 435 0.4%
Coloured 1 858 0.1%
Other 1 180 0.1%

Age

Age Population %
00 - 04 163 984 12.7%
05 - 09 142 612 11.0%
10 - 14 144 313 11.1%
15 - 19 159 642 12.3%
20 - 24 130 534 10.1%
25 - 29 99 850 7.7%
30 - 34 80 042 6.2%
35 - 39 71 038 5.5%
40 - 44 59 394 4.6%
45 - 49 53 881 4.2%
50 - 54 45 418 3.5%
55 - 59 35 508 2.7%
60 - 64 27 315 2.1%
65 - 69 21 205 1.6%
70 - 74 18 526 1.4%
75 - 79 16 045 1.2%
80 - 84 13 847 1.2%
85+ 11 916 0.9%

Politics

Election results

Election results for Vhembe in the South African general election, 2004.

  • Population 18 and over: 621 522 [51.80% of total population]
  • Total votes: 386 629 [32.22% of total population]
  • Voting % estimate: 62.21% votes as a % of population 18 and over
Party Votes %
African National Congress 348 768 90.21%
Democratic Alliance 15 553 4.02%
United Democratic Movement 5 821 1.51%
African Christian Democratic Party 4 687 1.21%
Pan African Congress 2 875 0.74%
New National Party 2 098 0.54%
Azanian People's Organisation 1 767 0.46%
Independent Democrats 916 0.24%
Freedom Front Plus 864 0.22%
Inkhata Freedom Party 585 0.15%
United Christian Democratic Party 469 0.12%
NA 359 0.09%
SOPA 336 0.09%
PJC 301 0.08%
EMSA 282 0.07%
CDP 258 0.07%
TOP 198 0.05%
UF 191 0.05%
KISS 129 0.03%
NLP 92 0.02%
Minority Front 80 0.02%
Total 386 629 100.00%

Notable people

Tshilidzi Nephawe (basketball player for the New Mexico State University)

Mulalo Doyoyo

References

  1. ^ "Mayoral/Portfolio Committee". Vhembe District Municipality. Archived from the original on 30 October 2016. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  2. ^ "Contact list: Executive Mayors". Government Communication & Information System. Archived from the original on 14 July 2010. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  3. ^ a b "Statistics by place". Statistics South Africa. Retrieved 27 September 2015.
  4. ^ "Statistics by place". Statistics South Africa. Retrieved 27 September 2015.
  5. ^ Limpopo declares disaster area, by Independent Online, December 11, 2008 at 07:52AM
  6. ^ "The official launch of the Vhembe Biosphere Reserve". Archived from the original on 2 October 2015. Retrieved 5 April 2012.
  7. ^ UNESCO - Biosphere Reserve Information
  8. ^ Statistics South Africa. Census 2011 10% sample

External links

  • Vhembe District Municipality Official Website
  • Vhembe Region named UNESCO’s Biosphere Reserve
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