uMlalazi Local Municipality (KZN284)

Geography, History and Economy

uMlalazi Local Municipality is part of King Cetshwayo District Municipality.

MDB code: KZN284

Description: The uMlalazi Local Municipality is a Category B municipality located within the King Cetshwayo District in KwaZulu-Natal. It borders on the Indian Ocean and has a coastline of approximately 17km. It is the largest of five municipalities in the district, making up almost a third of its geographical area.
 The population distribution in the municipal area is characterised by relatively high population densities within urban nodes and low densities in rural areas. The municipal area is dominated by tribal areas, and 14 tribal authorities exist within the area.
 The town of Eshowe is of great historical significance in that it is the birthplace of Cetshwayo, who was king of the Zulus during the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879. Eshowe Town is also considered the administrative and service centre of the uMlalazi Municipality. The coastal town of Mtunzini is situated on the north coast of KwaZulu-Natal on the banks of the uMlalazi River, and borders on the uMlalazi Nature Reserve. Mtunzini is the number one residential and ecotourist destination in South Africa.
 The municipal area consists of commercial farming areas in a broad, continuous band from the west of Eshowe to KwaGingindlovu (previously Gingindlovu) and to the north of Mtunzini. The rest of the area consists of tribal authority land, where land management has been poor. It is characterised by an undulating topography, causing difficulties with respect to the delivery of engineering services.
 The uMlalazi Municipality is crossed by a number of important transportation routes, such as the N2 motorway between Durban and Richards Bay, the R34 between Richards Bay/Empangeni and Nkwaleni Valley to the north of Eshowe, and the R66 from the N2 motorway to KwaGingindlovu, Eshowe, Melmoth, Ulundi and Vryheid.

Area: 2 214km²

Cities/Towns: Eshowe, KwaGingindlovu, Mtunzini

Main Economic Sectors: Agriculture (33%), tourism (10.1%), manufacturing (5%), services

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