S. African electoral commission overturns 51 objections against candidates for upcoming election

Source: Xinhua| 2019-04-09 23:33:52|Editor: yan
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CAPE TOWN, April 9 (Xinhua) -- The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) on Tuesday overturned 51 objections against candidates, most of them fielded by the ruling African National Congress (ANC), for the upcoming election.

The commission said it had received 52 written objections by the deadline on April 2, 2019, upheld one and overturned all others.

Of the objections, 29 were directed against candidates representing the ANC and the others representing nine other parties.

The opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) has asked the IEC to turn down a number of candidates submitted by the ANC. The DA accuses the ANC of intending to "send a list of criminals, failed public representatives, corruption-tainted officials and unrepentant thieves to Parliament" after the election, scheduled for May 8.

Many of the objections did not meet the prescribed format for submission according to the criteria in the Constitution and the Electoral Act, the commission said.

The Act provides three grounds to object to a candidate, namely: the candidate is not qualified to stand for elections; there is no prescribed acceptance of nomination signed by the candidate; and/or there is no prescribed undertaking signed by the candidate that they are bound by the Code of Conduct.

After deliberating, the commission resolved to uphold one objection by the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) against its own candidate, Seropane Mphethi, who was sentenced in June 2016 to 18 months' imprisonment, thus disqualifying him from holding elected office to the National Assembly or a provincial legislature, commission spokesperson Kate Bapela said.

"The commission dismissed all other objections for failing to meet the constitutional and statutory criteria," Bapela said, explaining that the majority of these objections were related to unproven allegations.

Any objector, party or candidate aggrieved by the IEC decision has until April 11, 2019, to appeal the decision to the Electoral Court.