Pretoria - The local government elections will not be postponed despite uncertainty about whether the voters’ roll should include addresses, Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Des van Rooyen said on Wednesday.
“It's all systems go. We don’t see any reason why we should postpone the election,” he told reporters in Pretoria.
“Come August 3 we will render another free and fair and successful local government election.”
Van Rooyen was speaking following the final voter registration weekend. Those voters who still wanted to register could do so at an Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) office.
The IEC had approached the Constitutional Court to appeal against on a previous ruling. It was hoped this would provide clarity on questions including whether lack of addresses would invalidate the roll.
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The Constitutional Court ruled in November last year that the 2013 Tlokwe by-elections were not free and fair. It said all new voters who registered had to have address details, or sufficient details of where they lived, to place them in a voting district.
In February this year, the Electoral Court again halted the Tlokwe by-elections after six independent candidates complained that 4 198 addresses were missing from the new voters' roll.
“Let me reiterate that the assignment of addresses does not fall within the mandate of the IEC. Being committed to ensuring a free and fair election, we have joined the IEC as a respondent and await the decision of the Constitutional Court to be delivered. We will abide by the decision of the court,” Van Rooyen said.
Government had begun exploring ways of assigning addresses to those living in informal settlements.
Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Director General Vusi Madonsela told a joint committee meeting at Parliament on Tuesday that one option was to assign a unique number, called an identifier, to those dwellings without formal addresses. This number would be linked to a resident’s name and GPS co-ordinates.