What is the rush to release results while there are mistakes, asks Zuma

Published Jun 2, 2024


Multiple political parties, civil societies and South Africans at large are sceptical about the Electoral Commission of South Africa’s (IEC) apparent rush to declare final election results.

This is despite 26 political parties who complained and raised 579 unresolved objections with the Commission.

The IEC has alleged made a number of mistakes including technical glitches its its resources that led to long queues and deprived some people of voting. The dashboard also crashed on Friday, and some have accused Commission of being “incompetent”.

The law provides the Commission with seven days to announce the results. However, the IEC insists it will announce them on Sunday.

South Africa took to the polls on Wednesday in the 2024 National and Provincial Elections.

New kids on the block uMkhonto we Sizwe Party (MKP) who performed excellently are singing the same tune as other parties who are requesting a recount amid alleged irregularities. The EFF, Ff+, and many other smaller parties are also dissatisfied.

MKP leader Jacob Zuma, arriving at the national Results Operations Centre in Midrand caused pandemonium as a large media contingent surrounded him.

His presence caused the IEC to delay its planned press briefing.

Addressing the media, Zuma said the results were not correct and tyhe final tallies should not be announced today.

“Nobody must force us to say now, here are the results, when the outcome is not correct.. I think the institution must satisfy us that they did look into the issues. We are going to need time… nobody must declare now. If that happens, people will be provoking us because we know what we are talking about., we are not guessing Why should they (IEC) rush to count? I am hoping whoever is responsible is hearing what we are saying,” Zuma said.

The Star and Saturday Editor in Chief Sifiso Mahlangu, during a media briefing on Saturday, asked a pivotal question concerning the haste to declare the results.

IEC insists it will release results today.

“There are many people that are invested in this work, who want to really have this work brought to finality, they are invested in it. South Africa is almost waiting for the results, said IEC Chairperson Mosotho Moepya.

This did not fly with a number of citizens.

Patriotic Alliance (PA) leader Gaston McKenzie requested the IEC not to rush in releasing the results.

“Let's be calm and smart. Stop this rush to announce election results IEC. You have made quite a few mistakes already but don’t commit your biggest mistake ever. We have nothing to lose by understanding the grievances lodged by parties first. Let us not be arrogant please,” said McKenzie.

Ordinary South Africans took to various social media platforms including X, also suggesting that the Commission should halt releasing the results until all disputes are addressed.

“The suggestion that the final election results should be rushed due to market pressures is indeed alarming. It is inconceivable to announce final results amidst 579 unresolved objections. This approach indicates that the IEC prioritizes the interests of investors over those of the South African electorate. The duty of the IEC should be to the voters and their representatives, not to external economic interests,” wrote Ntokozo Masuku.

“Political parties are not in a rush, voters are not in a rush. What is the IEC rushing for?” asked X user Bsbygal003.

The Star