Mashinini recommended for Electoral Commission vacancy

Wednesday, June 1, 2022
Glen Mashinini.

The Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs has recommend Vuma Glen Mashinini to fill a vacancy within the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC).

Committee chairperson, Mosa Chabane, said the committee considered a report sent to the National Assembly Speaker by a panel led by Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, and is of the view that Mashinini is the best candidate for the post, especially at this point in the life of the IEC, with the imminent changes to the electoral process.

“The Chief Justice’s report indicated that, in accordance with Section 6 of the Electoral Commission Act, 1996 (Act 51 of 1996), an invitation for candidates to submit applications was advertised and 48 applications were received. The panel shortlisted 12 candidates, of which three withdrew their applications and they interviewed nine candidates,” Chabane said.

Chabane said the committee appreciated the quality of candidates provided by the panel led by the Chief Justice, and is of the view that it presented credible and able South Africans, who would provide quality leadership at the institution.

“The calibre of candidate was impressive and any one of the submitted names could have added valuable input to the work of the commission. But the committee underscored the view that Mr Mashinini’s educational background and experience, especially the recent experience of guiding the process of the local government elections during a challenging period, stood him above the shoulders of other candidates,” Chabane said.

Chabane said the committee will recommend to the National Assembly to adopt the name of Mashinini for endorsement and appointment by the President.

Motion of Desirability on the Electoral Amendment Bill approved

Meanwhile, the committee has adopted the Motion of Desirability on the Electoral Amendment Bill and views the Bill as adequate to amend the Electoral Act 73 of 1998, in line with the June 2020 Constitutional Court on the New Nation Movement NPC and Others vs President of the Republic of South Africa and Others case.

Chabane said the report’s adoption will now enable the committee to consider and deliberate on the Bill.

He said the committee has since the judgment highlighted its intention to ensure that Bill’s amendment is done in a thorough and meticulous way that also ensures extensive public consultation, primarily because the “amendment of this Act has a direct bearing on the credibility of South Africa’s democracy.”

However, Chabane said the committee is disappointed by a media report over the weekend that sought to undermine the process by spreading various inaccuracies.

“The committee and by extension Parliament has at no stage sought to delay the amendment and has emphasised that the inclusion of independent candidates will strengthen South Africa’s democracy.

“It is on this basis that the committee had to make time for an extensive and meaningful public consultation process. Also, the process has been inclusive of the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC), which assured the committee that the commission will still have time to implement the electoral changes before the 2024 provincial and national elections,” the chairperson explained.

He said the committee will continue to process the Bill and will await further guidance from the Constitutional Court on the application that has been filed requesting an extension. – SAnews.gov.za

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