File photo: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)
File photo: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

IEC ready to assist Parliament following landmark judgment

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Jun 11, 2020

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Johannesburg - The Electoral Commissionof South Africa (IEC) says it is ready to assist Parliament in adhering to the Constitutional Court judgment that ruled parts of the Electoral Act was unconstitutional in not allowing independent candidates to stand for national and provincial elections. 

The apex court delivered the judgment on Thursday. 

The court gave Parliament 24 months to amend the Electoral Act. Currently, the Act states that adult citizens could stand for elections only through political parties and not as independents. 

IEC chairperson Glen Mashinini said they welcomed the ruling.

“The Electoral Commission welcomes the clarity the court has provided to the interpretation of the rights of citizens to stand for public office. We will study the judgment in detail to reflect on its full implications for the current electoral system and legislative framework governing national and provincial elections,” said Mashinini. 

Meanwhile, Parliament has noted the judgment and said it would abide by the court's decision.

"Parliament respects the judgment of the Constitutional Court, and will study its practical implications in relation to its obligations on the legislature," said Parliament's spokesperson Moloto Mothapo. 

The judgment has been welcomed by some within the political sphere. 

Former DA leader Mmusi Maimane and former Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba have both hailed the judgment and have called for Parliament to use the opportunity to “fix a broken” political system.

The ANC said it noted the judgment and would study for a further understanding of how it will impact its governing power.

"This judgment has just been made, therefore the ANC will need to study the judgment, and understand all the issues that are stated therein so that when it files commentary in the public, it has fully appreciated all the issues that have been ventilated upon,”  said ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe. 

Political Bureau

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