The Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Department has refuted claims by then EFF’s leader about the credibility of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) in the forth coming local government elections.
Malema had in the party’selection manifesto launch on Saturday, accused the IEC of rigging past elections, saying the commission stole EFF’s votes in Alexander in Gauteng and Tlokwe in the North West. He added that they would not allow the IEC to do so this time around.
“The IEC got used to [rigging] elections. We’re warning you, they’ll never defeat the power of black nations.” Malema reportedly said.
In reaction to this claim, Cogta said this is not true. The department went on to assure South Africans of the credibility of the IEC especially in the forth coming elections.
Cogta spokesperson Legadima Leso said the IEC has proved its integrity by delivering successful national and local government elections since 1994.
“Allegations about the IEC don’t assist us; as a country we must unite behind the IEC.” he said
“Minister Des van Rooyen is asking all South Africans to stand behind the IEC as we prepare for the third of August 2016 local government elections. Attacking the IEC now will not assist us as South Africans. Let’s stand behind the IEC so that we can assist them to deliver free and fair elections as we expect.”
The department further stated that Malema’s malicious claims would not be tolerated. It therefore issued a stern warning to the EFF, saying its attack on the IEC also represents an attack on the Constitution.
Cogta says it’s confident that the August 3 local poll will be free and fair.
Malema’s speech on the party’s manifesto launch which mostly challenged the credibility of the IEC and th Zuma led government happen not to go down well with most well meaning south Africans who thinks Malema was going too far in disregarding the nation’s political pillars.
South African author, columnist and documentary filmmaker Max du Preez commented on Malema’s allegations by saying that the EFF ought to be very careful not to mess with two key pillars of South Africa’s stability: the legitimacy of election results and the political neutrality of the defence force.
Perez went on to describe Malema’s utterances at the launch that the army could turn against government, threaten to disturb the political culture which the country has been known for.
Malema was reported to have said: “The same army, they [the government] say… must be brought to the EFF, that army is going to turn their guns against them, because that army doesn’t want this government. That army doesn’t want the corrupt government.”
“I’m whispering to you Zuma: wherever you are those soldiers are going to turn your guns against you. Be warned, leave office before the soldiers take their guns against you.
“The army is not happy… The army is the EFF.”
To this, Perez said it comes very close to threatening a coup d’état. “I know it is election talk and hyperbole, but some things should never be vocalised, especially in a fragile democracy like ours – like mentioning a bomb at an airport when you don’t have one. There are some real hotheads in Malema’s party, as the weekend placards about civil war testified,” he added.
Malema has in the recent times been cautioned to me mindful of his words for the sake of peace and stability of the nation’s democracy.