‘Parties must accept outcome’ - IEC official

2016-08-03 06:00
IEC provincial electoral officer, Mawethu Mosery.       PHOTO: nokuthula                 khanyile

IEC provincial electoral officer, Mawethu Mosery. PHOTO: nokuthula khanyile

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INDEPENDENT electoral commission (IEC) provincial electoral officer Mawethu Mosery said after the local government elections, the burden was on the people of KwaZulu-Natal to ensure that candidates, who contested in the elections accept the results.

Mosery was speaking at a prayer for peaceful elections organised by the KwaZulu Natal Christian Council (KZNCC) and IEC at the Imperial hotel last Thursday.

The province has 11 000 candidates contesting in the local government elections in 54 municipalities.

“In KwaZulu-Natal there are 32 political parties, but eThekwini is being contested by 35 political parties.

“There are only 1 830 seats available for the 11 000 candidates, it is true that over 9 000 candidates will not get a seat. Now the burden is on observers, community and church leaders, police services and other state departments is to ensure that the 9 000 who will not get seats accept the outcome,” said Mosery­.

He said despite concerns about political violence the province was stable.

“My assessment of the province is that it is stable, we are not in a state of political turmoil. If you observe, the killings are done by certain individuals. Despite this loss of life, it doesn’t say our province is unstable. We are not in a crisis, we are just dealing with isolated evil minds that kill candidates.”

Mosery said in the build-up to the elections there has been a lot of internal political fighting, competition and tension consequently leading to violence.

“Socioeconomic challenges also contribute to the violence we have experienced in our province, people see being a councillor as a way of getting employment for five years not because they want to serve the community.

“Most of the so-called service delivery protests were to remove certain candidates. This was evident when we released the candidates’ list. We have communities who wanted certain individuals, but the political party chose another candidate and they resorted to the protests.”

He said killings linked to politics were a common occurrence even in other countries like Sudan and Burundi.

“Elections can trigger public violence, look at Burundi, the moment the president of Burundi said he was standing for third term it triggered violence. We are not an isolated case.”

Mosery said the IEC is set to release results by 10 August.

“We are not like Zimbabwe. The electoral commission is directed by law, which says that within seven days an election results must be announced.”

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