As the Municipal elections draw near, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has pledged to provide a suitable electoral environment but urged members of the public to hold political parties accountable for any misbehavior that tends to disrupt the election process.
South Africa’s Municipal elections are scheduled to take place on 3 August 2016 and thirteen parties yesterday, signed the IEC Code of Conduct pledging to abide by the IEC’s code in the run up to and during the August local government elections.
However, the IEC Chair Vuma Mashinini said South Africans should approach the electoral courts to report any violations of the commission’s Code of Conduct by any political party.
“The Electoral Court is the relevant authority to pursue allegations of contraventions of the code of conduct. A judge made it clear that he welcomes any member of the public to approach this court directly.”
Meanwhile, political parties have derived moves to ensure that the coming elections are not marred by opposition parties. The Democratic Alliance (DA) for instance has plans to invite international communities that will help monitor the operation.
“We are inviting international communities to make sure that there is a national oversight and observe our missions and we will certainly be deploying our whole machinery to make sure we monitor these elections as best as we can.” DA’s leader Mmusi Maimane said.
The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on the other hand is hopeful that the IEC keeps its promise of conducting a free and fair election free of favoritism.
The IEC needs to play a role that allows political parties in South Africa outside the ruling party feel that there is a space and that is not going the exercising of biasness or prejudice and that is where our concern comes in.” EFF’s Magdalene Moonsamy said.
Meanwhile, President Zuma who was also present to sign the Code of conduct for his party, told political party leaders that no preference would be given to any party in the run up to the 2016 local elections. “We look forward to successful elections on August 3,” he said.
The President added that the African National Congress (ANC) promises robust, but peaceful electioneering ahead of this year’s local government elections.