The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) on Tuesday confirmed it received a total of 53 written objections from the public against candidates for the 2019 elections.
All submissions, except for one, were made by the stipulated cut-off date for submissions of 2 April.
Objections were made against 10 political parties in total. Four parties received one objection each: the African Christian Democratic Party, the African Content Movement, the African Independent Congress and the Alliance for Transformation for all.
Other parties received more than one objection. The African National Congress (ANC) received the most objections at 29, following that is the Black First Land First Movement (BLF) with 19 objections, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) received 13 objections, the Democratic Alliance (DA) received four objections, with the Land Party also receiving four objections.
FF Plus VS BLF
In March, Inside Politic reported that Freedom Front Plus leader Pieter Groenewald held a press briefing and confirmed the party had approached the IEC to object to the candidacy of the BLF for the upcoming elections. Groenewald said, “The IEC’s approval of the BLF as a registered party was irregular, illegal and invalid.
“South Africa’s Constitution states in Section 1 that the South African state is based on four core values, of which non-racialism is one of them. This makes it clear that the IEC has made a big mistake. The FF Plus asks the court to rectify this error,” Groenewald told the media briefing.
In response to this, BLF leader Andile Mngxitama said he was not shaken by the FF Plus court application as it was bound to fail. He said the reason behind FF Plus court application was to prevent his party the opportunity to go to Parliament because its leaders were scared that BLF would take the land back from “land thieves”.
One objection upheld
Regarding the public objections, the IEC said in a statement: “After deliberating, the Commission resolved to uphold one objection by the PAC against its own candidate, Mr Seropane Alton Senyane Mphethi. This candidate was sentenced on 7 June 2016 to 18 months’ imprisonment without the option of a fine. This disqualifies him from holding elected office to the National Assembly or a provincial legislature.
“The Commission dismissed all other objections for failing to meet the constitutional and statutory criteria. The majority of these objections related to unproven allegations.
“Chairperson Glen Mashinini said the Commission could only act within the prescripts of the law and the Constitution.”
The IEC also said that in line with regulations, it has informed in writing all parties involved as to the objections received from the public and afforded each party an opportunity to submit its own recommendations.
It confirmed that all parties denied the allegations and the ANC, EFF, DA and BLF submitted written recommendations to the Commission.