Mashatile assures elections will be free, fair amid Zuma’s comments

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Deputy President Paul Mashatile says while they are concerned over the utterances of former President Jacob Zuma, he has given assurance to South Africans that the country’s elections will be free and fair.

Speaking at a rally for the MK party a few days ago, Zuma said the newly formed political organisation was aiming for a two-thirds majority in the upcoming elections. The former president also called for transparency in vote counting.

Meanwhile, Mashatile has rejected attempts to cast aspersions on the integrity of the upcoming elections. Mashatile says some individuals have claimed that the elections will be rigged in favour of the African National Congress (ANC) to ensure that it remains in power.

This is because pundits are predicting that the ruling party will fall below the 50% mark and the opposition parties are aiming to topple the ANC.

Mashatile, who was speaking to the SABC at the Saint John’s Apostolic Church in Katlehong on the East Rand of Gauteng, says, “The IEC is ready and like before, I’m confident that they will conduct these elections diligently and make sure that the people of South Africa are able to reach their voting stations and be able to cast their vote without any disturbance. Yes, we are concerned but we want to assure South Africans that the elections have always been free and fair and they will continue to be free and fair.”

Mashatile emphasises the independence of the elections. “South Africa has had credible for the past 30 years, headed by the Independent Electoral Commission which has done a good job in the past 30 years. Very credible and we have had free and fair elections all these years. Nothing is going to change. We are going to have free and fair elections. Once the president announces when the election will be this year. We promise South Africans that those elections will be free and fair.”