North West, Free State ballot papers – different colours

2012-12-18 11:38

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North West and Free State delegates at the ANC’s national conference in Mangaung voted for their choice of leader on ballots highlighted in two different colours in case their votes are declared null and void by a court.

The Electoral Commission took the decision last night despite opposition from conference delegates to use the different coloured ballot papers.

This is so that if disgruntled delegates from either of the provinces win a court review on the validity of the conference, these votes could be counted separately and simply removed from the system, rather than reconvening the entire conference.

The Constitutional Court ruled last week that the Free State provincial executive council was improperly constituted and it was duly dissolved.

The ANC interpreted this to mean that the 20 delegates from the PEC won’t be able to attend conference, but the rest of the province’s delegation would be able to.

The North West High Court last week also ruled that the ANC should sort out its differences about membership in the North West before going ahead with the conference.

One Free State delegate was so unhappy about the decision that he left the conference.

“You have never come across a conference where you have different ballot papers for different provinces. Where is the notion of your vote is your secret? It is not the ANC we know. (In) doing that they admit that the conference is wrongly constituted,” he said.

He also said the validity of the conference didn’t depend on the voting, but the credentials.

Voting at the conference commenced after midnight, and continued until the early hours of this morning.

President Jacob Zuma yesterday looked set to win the contest.

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