‘No credible elections without verifying the authenticity of voters’

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Political Analyst Dr Sethulego Matebesi says there can be no credible elections without verifying the authenticity of voters. His comments follow the Constitutional Court’s ruling on Thursday which granted the Electoral Commission until November 2019 to have the addresses of voters on the national voters roll.

In its 2016 judgment, the Constitutional Court held that the IEC‘s failure to compile a voters’ roll with valid addresses was inconsistent with the Constitution. The 2016 judgment was prompted after a number of candidates challenged the outcomes of the by-elections in Tlokwe in North West.

This is after they discovered that the voters’ roll had omitted the physical address of thousands of voters. They complained that voters from outside that district had been bused in to come and vote.

Matebesi says the issue of addresses has a huge impact on the outcomes of elections.

“If you still have addresses that you can’t verify that calls for a serious concern. We know without grant payment system where it has been found that bogus people are being paid. So, it’s the same when it comes to the IEC. The verification of addresses … there are too many loopholes and unfortunately, South Africans will have to be exposed to yet another elections where one can say, to a certain extent, will be questionable.”

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