DA to oppose IEC reopening of candidate registration process
6 September 2021
The DA has briefed its lawyers to explore all available legal avenues to oppose the decision by the IEC to reopen its candidate registration process.
The IEC today announced its revised election timetable and a registration weekend after the Constitutional Court dismissed its application to have the Local Government Elections postponed until next year. Instead, the Court granted a 5-day delay.
This 5-day window has given the IEC an excuse to reopen the candidate registration process to allow the ANC to register the candidates where it failed to do so by the deadline of 23 August in 93 municipalities.
While the Constitutional Court judgment underscored the importance of a voter registration period, which we welcome, we strongly object to the use of the window to re-open candidate registration.
The two are clearly distinct from each other. There had been no prior weekend dedicated to voter registration, because this was cancelled in July due to the Covid spike.
However, there was a clear deadline for candidate registration, which the ANC missed.
It cannot now demand a second bite at the cherry. This has never been granted before when other parties have requested leeway on an IEC deadline, resulting in the NFP’s total exclusion from the 2016 local election, and the IFP’s partial exclusion from certain wards in the 2011 election.
What we saw today gives the ANC an advantage that other parties have never enjoyed. It is a transparent strategy to benefit the ANC, and would go some way to explaining why the ANC withdrew its appeal to the Electoral Court to have the candidate registration deadline lifted. Why would they have done that if they did not have a fallback position. Now their “Plan B” has been revealed.
However, the DA believes this manipulation was specifically precluded by the ConCourt’s judgment, for which we are very grateful, and we will seek to have it formally stopped.
The IEC cannot be used by the governing party to do its bidding. This is just another manifestation of the evils of State Capture by the ANC of state institutions. The DA will not hesitate to fight the IEC and the ANC in their blatant attempts to manipulate our Constitution and our electoral processes.
Issued by Helen Zille, DA Federal Council Chairperson, 6 September 2021