Mtubatuba by-elections going well - IEC

2015-05-06 15:54
(File: AFP)

(File: AFP)

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Durban - KwaZulu-Natal Independent Electoral Commission chairperson Mawethu Mosery said that more than 60 000 people had turned out to cast their votes in by-elections in Mtubatuba, northern KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday.

The highly-contested Mtubatuba Municipality council, which falls under Umkhanyakude district, was dissolved earlier this year following a decision by the provincial cabinet.

A total of 19 by-elections were held on Wednesday in the disbanded municipality.

Mosery told News24 that the IEC started operating at 03:00 in the morning.

“By 07:00 we started distributing all voting materials to all 81 voting stations around Mtubatuba. We opened our gates at 07:00 in the morning,” said Mosery.

He said voting would continue until 21:00 on Wednesday night and that then the ballot counting would begin.

“We had already seen more than 60 000 voters by midday and the IEC is pleased that everything went accordingly today,” he said.

Explaining the process, he said six political parties had contested the by-electiosn on Wednesday - the ANC, African Independent Congress, DA, EFF, National Freedom Party and the IFP.

“Mtubatuba has 38 council seats, 19 PR seats and 19 ward councillor seats. Each ward is an election on its own and we will know by tomorrow who are the winners. We will start the counting immediately after the voting ends,” said Mosery.

He said no violence or irregularities had been reported to the commission, however on Tuesday night he received a complaint from the IFP.

Complaint to IEC

A livid Blessed Glala, an IFP MPL, said, “Yesterday [on Tuesday] we lodged a complaint with the IEC about 38 people who were allowed to participate in the by-election even though they were not from ward 1 and are not residents of Mtubatuba.”

“The IEC is still mum on the matter and that is why we say that they have failed to do their job. They are treating the ruling party with kiddy gloves,” claimed Gwala.

He said a private security company called Khombindlela Security Services had been employed to provide security during the by-elections.

“Why did they [the IEC] not employ the services of the police? We asked the IEC and they are still mum on this issue."

But Mosery said the IFP complaint had been resolved.

“We are aware of all their grievances and we have dealt with them.”

Meanwhile, DA provincial leader Zwakele Mncwango said the elections had gone well, except for one major hiccup.

“This morning there were no ward ballot papers in Ward 4 and 21 people voted without those ballot papers, but the issue was later sorted out and everything is going well so far.”

EFF KZN convener Vusi Khoza said he was hopeful that the party was going to get some votes.

“We worked hard on our campaign and we will see tomorrow [on Thursday] when the results come out, but we are hopeful that we did well.”

KwaZulu-Natal Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Nomusa Ncube-Dube said she was pleased with the turnout.

“Everything went according to plan and we are happy that the people of Mtubatuba went out in their numbers to vote,” said Dube-Ncube.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  iec  |  eff  |  ifp  |  durban  |  local government

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