Home South African Build One SA welcomes ConCourt ruling on independent candidates

Build One SA welcomes ConCourt ruling on independent candidates

218

Build One South Africa has welcomed the Constitutional Court’s ruling that 1,000 signatures of registered voters are required for independent candidates and new entrants to contest next year’s national and provincial elections.

Build One South Africa leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: Armand Hough, African News Agency (ANA)

CAPE TOWN – Build One South Africa (Bosa) has welcomed the Constitutional Court’s ruling that 1,000 signatures of registered voters are required for independent candidates and new entrants to contest next year’s national and provincial elections.

Headed by party leader Mmusi Maimane, Bosa approached the apex court to challenge the requirement that independent candidates had to get the signatures of 15% of the quota in the previous election in the relevant region.

Bosa argued that the signature requirement was unreasonably high, as it set out to “demonstrate that the 15% signature requirement is arbitrary and poses a barrier to entry for independent candidates”.

“We welcome the decision by the court to remedy the act by reading in a clause that independent candidates and new entrants only require 1,000 signatures to contest elections,” said Bosa acting spokesperson Roger Solomons.

“The work begins today to collect signatures and mobilise communities behind our candidates for Parliament.

“There are already 34 Bosa candidates in the field, with many more to be unveiled shortly.”

ActionSA noted that while the ruling reduced the requirement for independent candidates, it did not amend the requirement for parties not yet represented in the National Assembly or any provincial legislature.

“As this is ActionSA’s first national and provincial election, we are still required to seek the necessary signatures to contest.”

The GOOD Party said now that the act has been declared rational and constitutional, the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) could prepare for the 2024 elections.

“Our democracy is in the process of maturing and today’s judgment, which settles the question of fair participation for independent candidates, is another step in the settling of our democratic process.

“The GOOD Party looks forward to presenting its vision, values and case for a fair and just future for South Africa in months to come.”

The DA has called on the IEC to expedite the announcement of the next registration weekend, and urged it to conclude consultations on the election date.

“As the Constitutional Court rulings on the Electoral Amendment Act have clarified legal uncertainties, the DA remains committed to promoting fair and transparent elections. We understand the significance of timely decisions, especially in light of the two cases that the IEC has argued could have serious repercussions for the elections if not promptly finalised.”

The ruling came as the Constitutional Court also, in a separate judgment on Monday, ruled that the 200/200 split in the Electoral Amendment Act passed constitutional muster.

The Independent Candidates Association (ICA) wanted the number of seats for independent candidates in the National Assembly contested in next year’s general elections to be increased from 200 to 350.

The court ruled that the ICA’s contention that Parliament acted unconstitutionally by splitting the seats in the National Assembly into 200/200 (200 for independents and 200 for candidates from national lists of political parties) was not unconstitutional.

“The applicant has not established that the impugned legislation is irrational, nor that it infringes a provision in the Bill of Rights. Therefore, it has not made out a case to justify the declaration of constitutional invalidity.”

Previous articleAccounts of sexual violence in Hamas attack mount but justice is remote
Next articleSA seeks ‘urgent meeting’ as Botswana extends restriction on fresh produce imports