The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has cancelled Wednesday’s scheduled by-election for Ward 20 in the Buffalo City Metro in the Eastern Cape.
However, by-elections in many other parts of the country are going ahead on Wednesday.
The IEC made the decision as the former councillor of this Ward obtained a court interdict against her expulsion.
The councillor, Ntombizodwa Gamnca, is challenging her expulsion from the council by Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Xolile Nqatha in January 2021.
The decision to expel her came after she was found guilty of robbery and intimidation and fined R10 000 by the East London Magistrate’s Court.
The expelled councillor is also being implicated in the sale of RDP houses.
By-elections will be held in 15 municipal wards across seven provinces on Wednesday.
The polls are the first instalment of by-elections in 2021 as the IEC attempts to cover its backlog that COVID-19 restrictions have caused over the past year.
The by-elections will be held under strict COVID-19 protocols.
Commission CEO Sy Mamabolo says everything is in place.
“What is awaited now is for the voters to come along and register their political choices. Personal protective equipment for staff has already been delivered. Ballot papers are on sight, the training has happened. Voting stations have been secured and it’s all systems go. So we should give people in those 15 affected wards a good electoral experience,” says Mamabolo.
IEC urges voters to adhere to all COVID-19 regulations during by-elections:
Meanwhile, the IEC is preparing to launch new management voting devices that will be used for the 2021 Local Government Elections later in 2021.
The system will replace the old “zip zip” device and will prevent a multiple voting phenomenon.
In the 2019 national elections, there were allegations of voters who were able to cast more than one vote at the polls.
Officials say the new online system will ensure that such incidents do not occur.
It will allow them to capture voters’ addresses and verify them against their respective wards.