It's the public's turn as IEC urges citizens to scrutinise election candidates

2019-03-28 19:02


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Members of the public can make their voices heard after the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) called on the public to scrutinise parties' candidates and object if they spot anyone they deem to be unfit.

On Friday, the IEC will release the list of all candidates who political parties nominated to contest the 2019 national and provincial elections in May and it will be available on its website for download.

"In terms of the election timetable, members of the public may object to the nomination of candidates until 17:00 on April 2. A total of over 10 000 candidates have been nominated to contest the national elections and over 8 000 candidates have been nominated to contest the provincial elections. This is significantly more than the 2 089 candidates nominated for the national ballot and 6 562 candidates nominated for the provincial elections in 2014," said spokesperson Kate Bapela.

"In terms of the Electoral Act, objections may be lodged against candidates on the basis that they are not qualified to stand for elections. There is no prescribed acceptance of nomination signed by the candidate; and/or there is no prescribed undertaking signed by the candidate, that the candidate is bound by the code of conduct," she continued.

READ: Court hears application regarding independent candidates is an 'extraordinary attempt to imperil the elections'

In terms of the Constitution, every citizen who is qualified to vote for the national assembly and or provincial legislature is eligible to stand for election except:

  • someone who is an unrehabilitated insolvent,
  • anyone declared to be of unsound mind by a court of the Republic;
  • anyone who has been convicted of an offence and sentenced to more than 12 months in prison without the option of a fine. This is for convictions in South Africa or outside the country, if the crime would have constituted an offence if it was committed in South Africa.

This disqualification ends five years after the sentence imposed has been completed.

"Objections may be submitted to the national office of the Electoral Commission or emailed to and must include the objector's full names, address and contact details, the full particulars of the candidate being objected to, the grounds for objection against the candidate and detailed supporting documentation.

"The commission will consider and make a determination on all objections and notify the objectors and affected parties of their decision by April 8. Any objector, party or candidate aggrieved by the decision of the commission then has until April 11 to appeal to the Electoral Court," said Bapela.

Read more on:    iec  |  kate bapela  |  pretoria  |  elections

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