IEC receives 338 objections against party candidates

Friday, March 20, 2009

Pretoria - The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has received 338 objections against candidates' lists submitted by political party's that will be contesting the 2009 General Elections.

The candidates' lists were made available for public inspection at national, provincial and municipal offices of the IEC on Monday and Tuesday.

South Africans were able to inspect the candidates' lists and accompanying documents which were also published in the national daily newspapers.

On the cut-off date on Wednesday, the IEC had received 338 objections against candidates out of a total of 9 425.

According to the IEC, many people used the publication to familiarise themselves with candidates on the various party lists as well as to raise objections against any of those candidates in terms of Section 30 of the Electoral Act, 1998 (Act 73 of 1998).

The public could object if the candidate was not qualified to stand in the election in terms of Sections 47 and 106 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa.

The public could also raise objections if the candidate had not signed an acceptance of nomination as prescribed as well as if the candidate had not signed the prescribed undertaking to be bound by the Code of Conduct.

In terms of the Electoral Act, any person, including the chief electoral officer, may lodge an objection with the Commission against any nominated candidate.

In that regard, there were 297 objections that were lodged by the Chief Electoral Officer, Pansy Tlakula.

She said a total of 176 candidates nominations were not submitted and was therefore bound by the Code and Acceptance.

Two of the candidates that were nominated were deceased, she said, while Identity Documents (ID) of six candidates were not found in the national population register.

Ms Tlakula further said three candidates were found to be non-South Africans, while a further 110 candidates were not on the voter's roll.

The IEC indicated that of the 297 candidates that objected, 28 were from political parties.

In addition to the objections lodged by the chief electoral officer, there were 41 objections which were received from individuals, candidates themselves and/or political parties.

In terms of the Election Timetable, the objections received by the Commission must be considered and decided by 23 March.

Ms Tlakula said every objector will be informed in writing, about such decisions. Appeals to the decisions of the Commissioners may be lodged with the Electoral Court by 26 March.

The Electoral Court serves as a court of final instance and its decisions will be made known by 31 March.

The Electoral Commission will then compile a final list of candidates on or before 3 April 2009, and on 7 April 2009 candidates will be issued with their certificates.