Profile of the Municipality

Maluti-A-Phofung Local Municipality was established in terms of the provincial Gazette No. 14 or 28 February 2000 issued in terms of Section 21 of the Local Government Notice and Municipal Demarcation Act No. 27 of 1998. Maluti-A-Phofung is a local municipality (FS194) and was established on 5 December 2001.

Maluti-A-Phofung is made up of four former TLC Local Authorities: QwaQwa Rural, Phuthaditjhaba, Harrismith and Kestell. Phuthaditjhaba is the urban centre of QwaQwa and serves as the administrative head office of the Maluti-A-Phofung Municipality. Surrounding Phuthaditjhaba are the rural villages of QwaQwa established on tribal land administered by the Department of Aland Affairs.

Harrismith is a service centre for the surrounding rural areas and a trading belt serving the passing N3 which links Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. Harrismith is surrounded by Tshiame, located 12km to the west and Intabazwe, which is located 1.5km to the north. The town is an economic hub for people living in Tshiame, Intabazwe and QwaQwa.

Kestel is a service centre for the surrounding agricultural oriented rural area with Tlholong as the township. Kestell is situated along the N5 road that links Harrismith with Bethlehem. The rural areas of Maluti-A-Phofung comprise of commercial farms and major nature conservation centres such as the QwaQwa National Park, Platberg, Sterkfontein Dam and the Maluti Mountain Range. The area is not only a tourism destination, but also makes a big contribution in generating gross agricultural income for the whole of the province and is also highly regarded for its beef production.