Landmark election marks 30 years of electoral democracy

Monday, February 26, 2024

Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo says the 2024 General Election is a landmark event as it marks 30 years of electoral democracy.

The President has declared 29 May 2024 the date for the National General and Provincial Elections.

“The Commission reiterates its willingness and ability to deliver this mammoth national project. All staff of the Commission stand ready to fulfil their tasks and thus ensure that the Commission meets its constitutional duties pertaining to the 2024 general elections,” said Mamabolo, at a media briefing in Pretoria.

He said this year’s election introduces novel experiences for the voters such as a third ballot in the National and Provincial Elections as well as the participation of independent candidates for the very first time.

For purposes of candidate nomination, he said the Commission promotes the use of the online Candidate Nomination (CNS) platform.

“It is convenient and facilitates compliance with the requirements of the law as it provides a compliance dashboard for users. Furthermore, the online platform generates pro-forma invoices and a payment gateway for the payment of prescribed deposits,” Mamabolo said.

He said all independent candidates and political parties who intend to contest this general election must submit nomination requirements by 17:00 on 08 March 2024.

“The Electoral Commission will, after verifying the submitted nomination documents, issue notices on non-compliance where such are warranted. These notices will be issued on 18 March 2024 and those issued with such notices must rectify non-compliance by 20 March 2024.

“In previous elections, there were candidates who were nominated by more than one political party. The law now obliges the Commission to notify affected parties and offer them an opportunity to either remove the said candidate and substitute or confirm their continued candidature.

“Our electoral scheme acknowledges that it is a matter of immense national importance for the citizens to know who the nominated candidates are. The publication of the provisional lists of candidates goes to the heart of the vote based on informed choices,” Mamabolo said.

Mamabolo said the provisional lists of candidates will be published for inspection on 26 and 27 March.

Mamabolo said interested parties may object against certain prospective candidates who are nominated.

“Such objections must be lodged with the Commission on 27 March 2024. The Commission will decide on these objections on 28 March 2024.

“Any person or political party or entity that is not satisfied with the decision of the Commission may approach the Electoral Court to appeal the objection decision. The Electoral Court’s appeals must be lodged by 02 April 2024. The Electoral Court will determine appeals relating to candidates on 9 April 2024,” he said.

Mamabolo said the conclusion of the candidate nomination process will set in motion the ballot paper printing project.

According to Mamabolo, the official list of the 23 292 voting stations to be used in the elections will be availed for inspection from 12 April 2024.

“This list will include the addresses of voting stations as well as the stopping times of the 33 mobile voting stations. The project of contracting these voting stations well advanced,” he said. –