Bid for independents to run for parliamentary seats

Bulelani Mkhohliswa
Reading Time: 2 minutes

South Africa could see independent candidates contesting elections at both national and provincial levels in future. That’s if the New National Movement has its way.

The party will be at the Constitutional Court on Thursday morning arguing to change the electoral system in order to allow for what it calls a more accountable system of government. Currently, the electoral act only allows independent candidates at local government level.

The applicants approached the Western Cape High Court last September seeking an order declaring the electoral act unconstitutional.

The application was dismissed by the High Court which ruled that there was nothing stopping the candidates from exercising their rights by joining or forming a political party.

New Nation Movement’s Bulelani Mkhohliswa says there is a need for the review of the system.

“The Constitution does give every adult citizen in South Africa the right to run for public office as an independent candidate. I think after 25 years it has become very clear to us that there’s a need for a review of the system. I mean if you look at way back to 1991 in the time of CODESA, those guys took the best decisions that they did under their own understanding of the system at the time. You know, but we believe that with the benefit of hindsight we are able to say: “Guys let’s look back and see what is it that needs to be changed” so that we can take South Africa from where it is to a better place.”

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