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Removing PR system can damage smaller parties: Jeffrey

Deputy Minister of Justice, John Jeffrey, says removing the current Proportional Representation (PR) system would wipe away smaller parties.

South Africa uses PR for elections rather than a winner-takes-all constituency system.

Jeffrey says the reason PR was chosen was to ensure that as many views possible are represented in Parliament and provincial legislatures.

He was the keynote speaker at an event organised by the Progressive Professionals Forum in Cape Town on whether the current electoral system is still relevant.

Jeffrey says: “We thought because of our history of conflict in South Africa, it was important to have the Freedom Front Plus in Parliament. And if you didn’t have the PR system, they wouldn’t’ be in Parliament. You have other parties, the ACDP (African Christian Democratic Party). They have a particular constituency; they would not be there without the PR system. The aim is inclusivity.”

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