With the 2021 Local Government Elections fast approaching, Action SA has unveiled a first of its kind candidate election process in the country. The online system will enable residents of every ward to elect the Action SA representative they want to contest in the local government elections expected to take place between August and November.
The system is similar to that used in America and is aimed at giving power back to the voters.
Party leader Herman Mashaba says one doesn’t have to be a member of Action SA in order to participate.
“Action SA is announcing that we are going to open our candidate selection processes to the communities of Gauteng and turn it into a candidate elections process. This is similar to the system of primary elections that is used in the United States. Importantly, to participate, you don’t have to be a member of Action SA, you just have to be a registered voter with the IEC,” Mashaba explains.
Action SA National Chairperson, Michael Beaumont, says candidate application and voter registration is already open.
“Voter registration and candidate application have already opened; people can go to the portal that you see listed behind us in the image. The process for candidates to finish applying will conclude at the on the 30th of April and voter registration will conclude on the 24th of May. We will have multiple candidates in every ward that will begin campaigning. This is a major part of the system for us because we want to have candidates who are going around the wards offering their visions for service delivery to the residents, in the background Action SA will screen the candidates that will include a values test which is critical,” says Beaumont.
Excited to be the first to register as a voter on our #DirectDemocracy Candidate Election system.
Let me show you how easy the process is.
— Herman Mashaba (@HermanMashaba) April 13, 2021
How will the candidates be verified and vetted?
Beaumont says there is a selection policy which allows for the necessary screening.
“Our candidate selection policy empowers a candidate selection committee in the background to do the necessary screening and vetting because, while we believe the people of South Africa must determine who should represent them, we do not take away the fact that we have a responsibility not to put people in front of them who aren’t who they say they are or who are dishonest or who have committed crimes in the past or anything of that nature,” adds Beaumont.
The party says the system, which advocates for direct democracy, will empower citizens to hold their elected leaders accountable and promote transparency.
Action SA unveils candidate system ahead of elections: