What you said: the IEC was ‘unfair’ to throw the ANC a lifeline

08 September 2021 - 12:30 By Cebelihle Bhengu
Elections must happen between October 27 and November 1 this year. File photo.
Elections must happen between October 27 and November 1 this year. File photo.
Image: Gallo Images

Readers are not impressed by the IEC's decision to reopen the candidate registration process for the upcoming local government elections, saying the ANC would benefit despite missing an earlier deadline.

The commission announced on Monday that political parties and independent candidates that missed the August registration deadline would be able to do so after voter registration weekend concludes on September 19.

The Constitutional Court last week rejected the IEC's application to have the municipal elections postponed to February next year. It ruled that local government elections must take place some time from October 27 to November 1 this year.

The commission applied for a postponement of the elections after former deputy chief justice Dikgang Moseneke recommended they be moved to February next year. Moseneke said the elections would not be free or fair if they are held at the height of the pandemic, which could prevent political parties from campaigning effectively. 

Last month, the ANC missed the deadline to register some of its candidates and approached the Electoral Court to ask for an extension. The ruling party later withdrew its request.

This has since sparked accusations from DA federal council chairperson Helen Zille, who said the party withdrew its application because it knew it would get preferential treatment from the IEC. 

The ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte denied this on Tuesday.

“We reject the accusation that the ANC tried to influence the IEC or the Constitutional Court in any way. We did not and we cannot. We met yesterday with all other political parties in the party liaison committee for the first time with the IEC,” she said. 

TimesLIVE ran a poll this week, asking readers what they thought of the IEC's decision. 

Eighty-two percent said it was unfair, as the party missed the initial August deadline. While 13% agreed with the IEC's decision.

Six percent said they would not be voting in the elections. 

Social media users were angered by the decision. 

Facebook user Malibongwe Chewu described the lifeline as “daylight robbery” by the IEC.

“This is daylight robbery by IEC. They favour ANC. It is not something new for parties to miss the date. In 2016 Magwaza's NFP had some challenges and they ended up missing the deadline. This is done to favour ANC.”

Fetsi George said: “Everything in this country is captured and there's nothing we can do about it.”