Eastern Cape is a province of South Africa. Its capital is Bhisho,
but its two largest cities are
Port Elizabeth and East London. It was
formed in 1994 out of the Xhosa homelands of
Transkei and Ciskei,
together with the eastern portion of the Cape Province. Landing place
and home of the 1820 settlers, the central and eastern part of the
province is the traditional home of the Xhosa people.
2 Law and government
7.1 Metropolitan municipalities
7.2 District municipalities
8.2 Other educational institutions
9.1 Initiation rituals
12 External links
Eastern Cape as a South African Province came into existence in
1994 and incorporated areas from the former Xhosa homelands of the
Transkei and Ciskei, together with what was previously part of the
Cape Province. This resulted in several anomalies including the fact
that the Province has four supreme courts (in Grahamstown, Port
Bhisho and Mthatha) and enclaves of
KwaZulu-Natal in the
province. The latter anomaly has fallen away with amendments to
municipal and provincial boundaries.The province is also made of
Mpondo clan, which primitively descended from Xhosa clan. Some of the
Mpondo clan went to this province when they were running away from
King Shaka's war. Mpondo people are more closely related to Xhosa, as
they use Xhosa as their main home language.
Law and government
Main article: Politics of the Eastern Cape
The first premier was
Raymond Mhlaba of the African National Congress
and the current premier of
Eastern Cape province is Phumulo Masualle
of the African National Congress
This region is the birthplace of many prominent South African
politicians, such as Steve Biko, Fort Calata, James Calata, Charles
Coghlan, Matthew Goniwe, Chris Hani, Bantu Holomisa, Nelson Mandela,
Govan Mbeki, his two sons Moeletsi and Thabo Mbeki, Raymond Mhlaba,
Vuyisile Mini, Wilton Mkwayi, Oscar Mpetha, Griffiths Mxenge, Robert
Resha, Walter Rubusana, Walter Sisulu, Robert Sobukwe, David Stuurman,
Oliver Tambo and many more.
See also: List of cities and towns in the Eastern Cape
Eastern Cape gets progressively wetter from west to east. The west
is mostly semi-arid Karoo, except in the far south, which is temperate
rainforest in the
Tsitsikamma region. The coast is generally rugged
with interspersed beaches. Most of the province is hilly to very
Graaff-Reinet and Rhodes including the Sneeuberge
(English: Snow Mountains), Stormberge, Winterberge and Drakensberg
(English: Dragon Mountains). The highest point in the province is Ben
Macdhui at 3001m. The east from East London and Queenstown towards the
KwaZulu-Natal border – a region known previously as
Transkei – is
lush grassland on rolling hills, punctuated by deep gorges with
Eastern Cape has a shoreline on its east which lines southward,
creating shores leading to the South Indian Ocean. In the northeast,
it borders the following districts of Lesotho:
Mohale's Hoek – west of Quthing
Quthing – between Mohale and Qacha's Nek
Qacha's Nek – east of Quthing
Domestically, it borders the following provinces:
Western Cape – west
Northern Cape – northwest
Free State – north
KwaZulu-Natal – far northeast
Climate is highly varied. The west is dry with sparse rain during
winter or summer, with frosty winters and hot summers. The area
Grahamstown receives more precipitation, which is also
relatively evenly distributed and temperatures are mild. Further east,
rainfall becomes more plentiful and humidity increases, becoming more
subtropical along the coast with summer rainfall. The interior can
become very cold in winter, with heavy snowfalls occasionally
occurring in the mountainous regions between Molteno and Rhodes.
Port Elizabeth: Jan Max: 25 °C, Min: 18 °C; Jul Max:
20 °C, Min: 9 °C
Molteno & Barkly East: Jan Max 28 °C, Min 11 °C; Jul
Max: 14 °C, Min: -7 °C
Aloe ferox on the R61 route between Cofimvaba and Ngcobo.
The landscape is extremely diverse. The western interior is largely
arid Karoo, while the east is well-watered and green. The Eastern Cape
offers a wide array of attractions, including 800 km of untouched
and pristine coastline along with some particularly splendid beaches,
and "big-five" viewing in a malaria-free environment.
The Addo Elephant National Park, situated 73 km from Port
Elizabeth, was proclaimed in 1931. Its 743 km² offers sanctuary
to 170 elephants, 400
Cape buffalo and 21 black rhino of the very
scarce Kenyan sub-species.
The province is the location of South Africa's only Snow skiing
resort, Tiffindell, which is situated near the hamlet of Rhodes in the
Drakensberg on the slopes of Ben Macdhui, the highest
mountain peak in the
Eastern Cape (3001 m).
The National Arts Festival, held annually in Grahamstown, is Africa's
largest and most colourful cultural event, offering a choice of the
very best of both indigenous and imported talent. Every year for 11
days the town's population almost doubles, as over 50,000 people flock
to the region for a feast of arts, crafts and sheer entertainment.
Tsitsikamma National Park is an 80 km long coastal strip
between Nature's Valley and the mouth of the Storms River. In the park
the visitor finds an almost untouched natural landscape. Near the park
Bloukrans Bridge and
Bloukrans Bridge Bungy which is the
world's third highest bungee jump,
Jeffreys Bay is an area with some of the country's wildest coastline,
which is backed by some of Africa's most spectacular sub-tropical
rainforest. Famous for its "supertubes", probably South Africa's
longest and most consistently good wave, it's charged with a surf vibe
as relaxed as it is friendly, and this tends to soften the effect of
the wealthy set who have made this part of the coast their own.
Aliwal North, lying on a splendid agricultural plateau on the southern
bank of the Orange River, is one of the country's most popular inland
resorts and is famous for its hot springs.
The rugged and unspoilt Wild
Coast is a place of spectacular scenery,
and a graveyard for many vessels.
Whittlesea, Eastern Cape, situated in the beautiful Amatola
Mountains,is now famous for the first wine estate in the province.
Eastern Cape is one of the poorest provinces in South Africa. This
is largely due to the poverty found in the former homelands, where
subsistence agriculture predominates.
There is much fertile land in the Eastern Cape, and agriculture
remains important. The fertile
Langkloof Valley in the southwest has
enormous deciduous fruit orchards, while sheep farming predominates in
the Karoo. The Alexandria-
Grahamstown area produces pineapples,
chicory and dairy products, while coffee and tea are cultivated at
Magwa. People in the former
Transkei region are dependent on cattle,
maize and sorghum-farming. An olive nursery has been developed in
collaboration with the
University of Fort Hare
University of Fort Hare to form a nucleus of
olive production in the Eastern Cape.
Domestic stock farming is slowly giving way to game farming on large
scale, fueled by the commercial benefits of eco-tourism and the lower
risk needed to protect wild game against drought, the natural elements
The area around
Stutterheim is being grown extensively with timber
The basis of the province's fishing industry is squid, some
recreational and commercial fishing for line fish, the collection of
marine resources, and access to line-catches of hake.
With three import/export harbours and three airports offering direct
flights to the main centres, and an excellent road and rail
infrastructure, the province has been earmarked as a key area for
growth and economic development in modern South Africa.
The two major industrial centres,
Port Elizabeth and East London have
well-developed economies based on the automotive industry. General
Volkswagen both have major assembly lines in the Port
Elizabeth area, while East London is dominated by the large
DaimlerChrysler plant, now known as Mercedes-Benz South Africa.
Environmental-friendly projects include the Fish River Spatial
Development Initiative, the Wild
Coast SDI, and two industrial
development zones, the East London Industrial Development Zone and the
Coega IDZ near Port Elizabeth. Coega is the largest infrastructure
development in post-apartheid South Africa. The construction of the
Port of Ngqura
Port of Ngqura was completed and the first commercial ship
anchored in October 2009. It is expected that this development will
give the province a major economic boost.
Other important sectors include finance, real estate, business
services, wholesale and retail trade, eco-tourism (nature reserves and
game ranches) and hotels and restaurants.
Main article: List of municipalities in the Eastern Cape
Population density in the Eastern Cape
Dominant home languages in the Eastern Cape
No language dominant
Cape Province is divided into two metropolitan
municipalities and six district municipalities. The district
municipalities are in turn divided into 27 local municipalities:
Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality
Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality
Alfred Nzo District
Chris Hani District
Joe Gqabi District
O.R. Tambo District
King Sabata Dalindyebo
Port St. Johns
Sarah Baartman District
Dr Beyers Naudé
Blue Crane Route
Sunday's River Valley
Eastern Cape Department of Education has been roundly criticised
for poor primary and secondary education resulting from
dysfunction, special interests, and issues with the South Africa
teachers union, SADTU. The province struggles with a lack of
schools; a lack of teachers leading to overcrowding; a lack of
textbooks; a lack of basic facilities like toilets, electricity or
water; and poor transport infrastructure which regularly absents and
By 2011, basic education had so deteriorated that the national
Department of Basic Education
Department of Basic Education intervened under section 100(1)(b) of
the Constitution of South Africa, taking control of the province's
educational administration. The
Eastern Cape has since been the
worst-performing province educationally and especially in terms of
matriculation; matriculants' results averaged 51% in 2009, 58.3%
in 2011, 64.9% in 2013, 65.4% in 2014, and 56.8% in
In the 2015/2016 financial year, the province failed to spend R530
million of its allocated R1.5 billion budget for education, most of it
intended for infrastructure development.
Equal Education's 2017 report, Planning to Fail, found a "systemic
Eastern Cape education".
Rhodes University (Grahamstown)
Nelson Mandela University (Port Elizabeth)
University of Fort Hare
University of Fort Hare (main campus in Alice, satellite campuses in
Bhisho and East London)
Walter Sisulu University (campuses in Buffalo City, Butterworth,
Mthatha and Queenstown)
Pearson Institute of Higher Education (campuses in East London and
Other educational institutions
Port Elizabeth College
College of the Transfiguration, Grahamstown
Eastcape Midlands TVET College (6 campuses in Uitenhage, 1 in
Grahamstown, 1 in Graaff-Reinet, and 1 in Port Elizabeth)
Various independent FET Colleges (Further Education and Training)
Tuberculosis and HIV are the province's leading causes of avoidable
mortality, accounting for 9.8% and 5.4% of those deaths.
Eastern Cape is known for its traditional black initiation
schools, which perform coming-of-age ceremonies involving circumcision
and bushwhacking. These annually lead to the deaths of teenage males
due to botched circumcisions, sepsis, pneumonia and
Premier Boxing League
Mind Sports South Africa
Mind Sports South Africa
Chippa United F.C.
Chippa United F.C. (Port Elizabeth)
Chevrolet Warriors (Port Elizabeth)
Eastern Province Elephants
Eastern Province Elephants (Port Elizabeth)
Border Bulldogs (East London)
Southern Kings (Port Elizabeth)
Eastern Cape Pool Billiards ( 8 Ball Pool) - ( Port Elizabeth,
Uitenhage, Despatch, Jeffreysbay, Humansdorp, St. Francis, East
Eastern Cape Blackball Pool ( Port Elizabeth, Grahamstown)
Eastern Cape Billiards and Snooker ( Port Elizabeth, East Londen)
^ a b c d Census 2011: Census in brief (PDF). Pretoria: Statistics
South Africa. 2012. ISBN 9780621413885. Archived (PDF) from the
original on 13 May 2015.
^ Mid-year population estimates, 2017 (PDF) (Report). Statistics South
Africa. 31 July 2017. p. 2. Retrieved 3 August 2017.
^ "As Zuma woos support,
Eastern Cape suffers". Times LIVE.
2012-04-15. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ a b Ngcukana, Lubabalo (2016-02-19). "Premier's bold plans to deal
with the education crisis in Eastern Cape". CityPress. Retrieved
^ Gqirana, Thulani (2016-01-06). "
Eastern Cape is a 'failed state' -
education expert". News24. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ a b John, Victoria. "
Special Investigating Unit to probe Eastern
Cape education". The M&G Online. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ a b Motsepe, Tshepo (2016-01-26). "Motshekga has to account for her
role in the education crisis – especially in the Eastern Cape". The
Daily Maverick. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ Keet, Jacques. "Matric results a wake-up call for SA". The M&G
Online. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ "Matric pass rate 'a significant achievement'". The M&G Online.
2011-01-06. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
Eastern Cape remains worst province". News24. 2015-01-06.
^ Jemsana, Busisiwe (2016-03-13). "Tripartite alliance to address E
Cape education crisis". South African Broadcasting Corporation.
^ Quintal, Genevieve. "Matric results 2015: Pass rate drops to 70.7%".
The M&G Online. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ Majangaza, Sino (2016-03-09). "R530-million of unspent EC budget
meant for poor schools given to other provinces". DispatchLIVE.
^ Phandle, Gugu (2016-03-24). "EC to return unspent R1bn: challenge is
'incapacity to utilise funds'". DispatchLIVE. Retrieved
^ Damba-Hendrik, Nombulelo (2017-04-28). "Systemic "failure in Eastern
Cape education"". Retrieved 2017-04-28.
Eastern Cape initiation claims another victim". The M&G Online.
2008-06-18. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
^ Koyana, Xolani. "Nine boys in hospital after botched circumcisions".
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Eastern Cape.
Eastern Cape National Government information
Eastern Cape Provincial Government
Eastern Cape Socio-Economic Consultative Council
Eastern Cape Development Corporation
Province of the Eastern Cape
Largest city: Port Elizabeth
Population: 6,829,958 (2011)
Land area: 168,966 km2
King William's Town
Administrative divisions of South Africa
Cape Town (legislative)
List of municipalities in South Africa
Coordinates: 32°S 27°E / 32°S