KZN Cogta MEC decries manipulators as electoral court delays phongolo by-election

KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Nomusa Dube-Ncube has expressed disappointment that there are still individuals who wish to manipulate municipal by-elections as the Electoral Court rules to delay a Phongolo by-election until the local voters’ roll has been rectified.

MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube has had to postpone and approve new date for the by-election that was scheduled to take place in ward 7 of uPhongolo Municipality in Northern KwaZulu-Natal.  The electoral court resolved to allow the Independent Electoral Commission to request the MEC to allow a new date due to discrepancies arising from the voters roll.

The case regarding the upcoming by-election in ward 7 of Phongolo local municipality was initiated by the ANC whose representatives had questioned the regularity of the voters’ roll, particularly in light of last year’s ConCourt ruling that all eligible voters must furnish an identifiable address upon registration.

It appears that the voter’s roll has over 300 voters who cannot be positively verified as per the Constitutional Court judgement.

“We want to strongly condemn what appears to be an emerging practice by some individuals and political parties who resort to all forms of illegalities in order to fraudulently win the by-elections in the province.  It is unfortunate that in this day and age there are still people who think they can win municipal by-elections by stealth. We are nevertheless pleased that the Electoral Court has stepped in at Phongolo and ordered the voters’ roll in ward 7 to be re-examined and rectified,” said Dube-Ncube.

“We cannot have a voter’s roll where non-eligible voters who do not reside in ward 7 would have been allowed to cast their ballots for the local ward councillor. This would have been tantamount to electoral fraud,” said Dube-Ncube.

“The time has come to investigate and expose all those enemies of our constitution and democracy who are hell-bent on subverting the will of the people through fraudulent means.   We appeal to the communities to come forward with information as this corrupt practice is putting a stain on our credible and revered electoral systems” added Dube-Ncube

“We want to see municipalities that derive their mandate from the popular vote. This in itself ensures that such municipalities are accountable to their constituents. No one wants to live under a municipal council whose very democratic legitimacy is being questioned,” said Dube-Ncube.

KZN Cogta’s role is to mobilise the public for municipal elections and by-elections on a strictly apolitical basis to enhance the legitimacy of local government institutions in the eyes of those whom municipalities are supposed to serve. The management of the elections and the common voters’ roll is a function of the Independent Electoral Commission.

For more information contact: KZN Cogta spokesperson Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403 or Msawakhe Mayisela on 060 9664220.