Elections 2021: IEC's extended registration period allows 28 more parties to take part

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Local government elections are set for November.
Local government elections are set for November.
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  • A total of 32 political parties made use of the reopening of the candidate registration process.
  • All but four of these political parties will take part in the municipal elections, while the remainder only contests national elections. 
  • This was released in a general notice published by the IEC in the Government Gazette on Tuesday. 

A total of 28 more political parties will contest the upcoming municipal elections after taking advantage of the one month extension granted by the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC), when it reopened the registration process.

The registration process was scheduled to end at 17:00 on Tuesday (21 September). 

The extension was granted amid objections by the DA and EFF.

In total, 32 more political parties were registered between 4 August and 16 September, and all but four have registered to contest the municipal elections, while the others have enrolled for national elections only.

This was revealed in a general notice published by the IEC in the government gazette on Tuesday. 

READ | Elections 2021: Voters roll to be closed on Monday after Dlamini-Zuma gazettes 1 November poll

Among the newly-registered political parties eyeing the municipal elections are the Metsimaholo Progressive People's Forum. 

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Members of the Cape Coloured Congress campaign in Mitchells Plain on Tuesday.

The party indicated that it would contest the local government elections in the trouble-ridden Metsimaholo Local Municipality in the Free State on 1 November.

The municipality, which included Sasolburg in the northern Free State, had been dogged by political in-fighting and lapses in governance that had resulted in roads being left in a bad condition, unfinished RDP housing and a R22-million multi-purpose centre that had been left incomplete.

Adriaan Basson | This election is not about Ramaphosa, Zille or Malema - it's about potholes and power

In July 2017, the council, which was made up of a coalition which included the Metsimaholo Community Association and the DA, and supported by the EFF, was dissolved just a year after the 2016 local government elections, for failing to pass a budget.

The Mandela Bay Community Movement in the Eastern Cape is another municipal contender.

The Nelson Mandela Bay metro is currently being run through a DA-led coalition.

In 2016, the DA got the most votes in Nelson Mandela Bay in the local government elections and formed a coalition with smaller parties to remove the ANC from power.

READ | Elections 2021: All you need to know

Two weeks ago, the IEC announced voter and candidate registrations would be reopened after the Constitutional Court dismissed its application to postpone the local government elections to next year.

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Cyril Ramaphosa leads ANC campaigning in Soweto at the weekend.

The DA then launched its court application to have the IEC decision declared invalid and unlawful, and set it aside, saying the move stood to only benefit the ANC who had failed to register candidates in at least 93 municipalities. 

The DA's application was supported by the IFP, EFF, ATM and the South African Institute of Race Relations. ActionSA also opposed the extension. The DA's application was opposed by the IEC, Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the ANC and Freedom Under Law.

READ | Duarte tells electoral court the ANC's incomplete candidates list affects 93 municipalities

According to the IEC, the ACDP, AIC, Al Jama-ah, COPE, FF Plus, GOOD, PAC and UDM supported extending the deadline.

On Monday, the Constitutional Court dismissed the DA's application to declare the IEC's decision to reopen candidate registrations unlawful and invalid, meaning all the aforementioned 28 parties who wished to stand for election in this year's elections could now do so without the fear of being disqualified.

On Monday, Dlamini-Zuma, gazetted 1 November 2021 as the date for the municipal elections. 

Gazetting of the election date meant that the IEC sealed the voters' roll at midnight on Monday while the candidate registration system closed at 17:00 on Tuesday.

The commission would publish the final list of candidates on 29 September.

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