The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) on Thursday officially closed the process allowing political parties to submit their candidate nominations lists. This means no parties may submit their list after the deadline.
Nominations may be submitted by hand at local Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) offices for the municipality where candidates will be contesting the elections.
The IEC has also introduced an online platform for submitting nominations for candidates interested in running for the elections via the Electoral Commission’s website (www.elections.org.za).
A total of 28 448 wards and PR candidate nominations had been submitted online by Wednesday morning, a further 2 077 nominations had been submitted manually and captured at IEC offices.
Once the lists have been submitted, the IEC will then meticulously look at all the candidates to see if they qualify to stand for the elections. The IEC will then release the full lists of the candidates who will stand for the elections.
According to the electoral body the number of the registered independent candidates has increased significantly. The IEC’s Deputy CEO Sy Mamabolo also says Thursday is a critical moment in preparation for the elections.
“From here we will be in a position to determine the ballot papers to ensure that right quantities are sent to municipalities ahead of August.”
A total of 53 757 candidates contested the previous Municipal Elections in 2011 – including 754 independent candidates.
Parties reveal their candidate list
Political parties have revealed their candidate lists at different media briefings ahead of the deadline. The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has launched its candidates list. The party says none of its top six leaders will be standing for local government elections.
The party says it has, however, included some of its current members of parliament on the lists of candidates to beef up capacity in municipal councils.
Party spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi says, “In terms of the top six leadership of the EFF in Parliament, they are not part of the 9 300 candidates that are contesting different wards in South Africa as PR or as councillors.”
He adds, “Majority of the members of the central command team that are in Parliament will remain in Parliament, but also those that are going to councils are leaving with a wealth of confidence and experience that they will display at the local government level of politics.”
The EFF is promising to field a reputable, diverse group of councillor candidates with a 50/50 representation of women for the August 3 elections. The local government elections will be a real test for the EFF as it contests for the first time.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has also released its candidates’ list for the LGE. The DA is confident of retaining the municipalities it controls in Western Cape, with Patricia de Lille staying on as Cape Town’s mayor.
But it’s got its eye on other prizes. Former businessman Herman Mashaba is the party’s mayoral candidate for Johannesburg with Haniff Hoosen nominated for eThekwini. Athol Trollip will contest the sought-after Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality.
DA leader Mmusi Maimane has challenged the ANC to release its candidates’ list. “I want to say to Gwede Mantashe and Jacob Zuma that release your lists,” he said.
“Release your mayoral candidates so that South Africans can see who they are voting for.”
The ANC meanwhile played its cards close to its heart. The party says there are no names yet for the ANC’s mayoral candidates in key municipalities like Tshwane, Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Nelson Mandela Bay metro as the party waits for the affected regional and provincial leaders to find consensus.
Reporting on the outcomes of the ANC’s national list conference and the national executive committee meeting last weekend, ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said at a media briefing in Luthuli House in Johannesburg that the decision on mayoral candidates could be ready in the next two weeks.
Mantashe said the ANC was “justifiably proud” of the role communities played in the development of its candidates list. “No other party in South Africa can legitimately claim the same extent of transparency and inclusiveness in the selection of candidates,” he said.
The involvement of communities in the party’s councillor selection process was an attempt to shove up the credibility of candidates. However, in some branches and regions the process was marred by incidents of violence and intimidation, threatening to undermine the legitimacy of the process.
Mantashe said the national executive committee “denounced in the strongest possible terms the incidences of violence that would have erupted in some areas during the candidate selection process”.
The committee called for the relevant structures to act decisively in those instances, he said.
He also had a word of caution for those candidates who had been successfully nominated.
“They will no doubt know that deployment, should they be elected, is an honour and a privilege. It can be withdrawn or changed at any time the ANC decides,” he said.
During the launch of the ANC’s 2016 municipal elections manifesto in Nelson Mandela Bay metro in April, President Jacob Zuma said that “all councillors will be required to sign performance and accountability agreements”, which were meant to enable the party to deal swiftly with wayward councillors.
At its national conference in Mangaung in 2012 the ANC spoke against the threat of careerism within its ranks. The meeting said that the phenomenon, including crass materialism, undermined the moral fibre of the ANC and subsequently its ability to effectively lead society.
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