Home South African Cabinet approves law to allow independent candidates to contest as MPs and...

Cabinet approves law to allow independent candidates to contest as MPs and MPLs

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The Constitutional Court gave Parliament two years to fix the electoral laws to allow independent candidates to contest elections at national and provincial levels.

Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele says report on independent candidates contesting national and provincial elections sent to Parliament. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency/ANA

Cape Town – Cabinet has approved a report that would allow independent candidates to contest national and provincial elections.

This comes after the Constitutional Court ruled last year that independent candidates can contest national and provincial elections to be MPs and MPLs, and not be restricted to local government level.

This was after the New Nation Movement went to the High Court where it initially lost the battle, but went to the Constitutional Court to appeal the decision.

The apex court ruled in favour of the New Nation Movement.

The Constitutional Court gave Parliament two years to fix the electoral laws to allow independent candidates to contest elections at national and provincial levels.

Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele announced on Thursday that this law was now on its way to Parliament after it was approved by Cabinet.

“Cabinet approved that the report of the ministerial advisory committee on Electoral Systems Reforms be submitted to Parliament. The electoral reforms were initiated after the Constitutional Court judgment declared in 2020 that the Electoral Act (Act 73 of 1998) was unconstitutional as it only provided for the elections of members of the National Assembly and provincial legislatures to be done through political parties. The (ministerial advisory committee) presents policy options that can remedy the unconstitutional aspects of the Electoral Act of 1998,” said Gungubele.

This would stop the current system of only party representatives being allowed to serve as MPs and MPLs. The national legislature would now begin the process of going through the process of fixing the bill.

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Political Bureau

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