Local elections still on for 27 October until ConCourt decides otherwise

That’s the view of cooperative governance and traditional affairs minister (Cogta) Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, on Tuesday, who said government was gazetting the date to meet statutory obligations.

This means Independent Election Commission or Govt cannot change the date of elections up until the Constitutional Court provide proclamation that elections can be postponed.

This follows the former deputy chief justice Dikgang Moseneke, who chaired an inquiry into whether the election could be free and fair under Covid-19 conditions, and recommended elections be postponed to February 2022, during his report to IEC.

During a virtual media address Dlamini-Zuma said: “In balancing the need to secure livelihoods and our democratic obligations, we are in agreement with the outcomes of the Moseneke inquiry.”

She said she was “bound to fulfil her constitutional and statutory obligations to timeously proclaim the date for the elections.

“There is currently no court order that would excuse the minister from fulfilling her constitutional and statutory obligations. It is therefore clear we still must go ahead to call the elections and gazette the date. This will also enable the IEC to file papers in the Constitutional Court to postpone an election that has been called.

“In gazetting the date, we are no way seeking to contradict the inquiry’s conclusion nor the IEC’s contemplated actions. We are merely fulfilling our obligations,” says the minister.

In his submission report Moseneke declared said: ”Having considered all submissions and the related science, we conclude it is not reasonably possible or likely the elections scheduled for the month of October 2021 will be held in a free and fair manner, as required by the provisions of the constitution and related legislations.

“We go further to the scheduled elections are likely to be free and fair not later than the end of February 2022.”

For now, we await the proclamation from the ConCourt to gazette the national local government elections.

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