Jacob Zuma’s MK Party and others demand an election re-run amid vote rigging claims



Published Jun 1, 2024


Former president Jacob Zuma sat silently on Saturday night as young leaders of the MK party made bold claims during a press briefing, accusing the Electoral Commission of South Africa and a Cape Town-based IT company of rigging the May 29 elections.

On Friday morning, the election results leader board crashed for two hours. The MK party, through spokesperson Nhlamulo Ndhlela says during that two hours, an IT company was allegedly rigging the elections results system.

“You can't fool us. We know exactly what was happening.

“There is an IT entity which was appointed in Cape Town, that interfered during that two hour period. We can confirm it,” said Ndhlela, who said they had evidence.

Arthur Zwane, an MK leader who spoke during the briefing said two men were allegedly picked up by the police for interfering with the system. They said the IEC could not confirm this, but Ndhlela said they did engage the IEC chief electoral officer Sy Mamabolo on the matter.

“The secrecy around that process tells us there is more to it than meets the eye”, said the MK leader.

During a media briefing on Saturday afternoon, IEC chairperson Mosotho Moepya, seemingly anticipating the MK going public with such claims, told the media that the elections system that was running the current elections was built in house by the IEC.

Moepya said all service providers, including auditors - Grant Thornton Auditors - were appointed by public tender.

Ndhlela accused the IT company from Cape Town of rigging the elections during the two hour blackout on Friday.

“They were rigging the system,” he said.

“The days of owning us have come to an end. We don't have a manifesto, we have a people's mandate and this is a manifestation of that,” said Ndhlela.

“So with all of that, we are engaging with our legal team, they have stated that we should contemplate a re-vote. We want a total re-vote,” said Ndhlela.

The MK party has attained over 2.3 million votes in the May 29 elections, securing just under 15% of the votes in the elections. The MK was the third biggest party in the country, behind the ANC and the DA - which attained 6.4 and 3.49 million respectively. The ANC and the DA attained 40.19% and 21.81% respectively.

The MK party are not the only party making allegations of vote rigging, in the Western Cape, there are over 19 other parties who are not happy with the results in the Western Cape.

Sara president Colleen Makhubela described Zuma as a father and said they had taken comfort from him.

“We are not standing here as sore losers, we are parties that want a free, fair and credible elections,” said Makhubele.

Other parties backing the MK are SARA, ACC, ACT, ACP, ACDP, SUN, COPE, UDM, AADP, PA, Xiluva, CISA, PMC, AHC, AMC, ARA, UAT, AM4C, APC, Al-Jama, UIM, Sarko, ATM and OHM. The parties have given the IEC until 10pm to respond.

The EFF has publicly accepted the results on Saturday through its president Julius Malema.

Muzi Ntshingila, the MK party head of elections said they had lodged their complaint before 6pm after the IEC allowed further objections and set a 6pm deadline for Saturday.

The results are expected to be announced on Sunday. As the MK party was briefing the country, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s office sent a circular saying he would participate in the IEC’s elections results announcement at 5.20pm on Sunday afternoon.