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Labour Party approaches ConCourt to postpone election date


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Labour Party approaches ConCourt to postpone election date

Labour Party approaches ConCourt to postpone election date
Photo by GovtZA

17th April 2024

By: Thabi Shomolekae
Creamer Media Senior Writer


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The Labour Party of South Africa on Tuesday noted that owing to Electoral Court delays in its case to reopen the Independent Electoral Commission’s (IEC’s) online portal, the party will now be launching an application to the Constitutional Court seeking to set aside the electoral timetable and postpone the elections scheduled for May 29.

On Monday, the Electoral Court handed down judgment in the Labour Party’s application to reopen the IEC online portal, which the party said was unstable during the uploading period during which parties were asked to submit the required documents needed to contest the elections.


Parties had until 17:00 on March 8 to ensure all documents were submitted.

In March, the Labour Party asked the Supreme Court of Appeal to ensure that its application to the Electoral Court was set down as soon as possible, raising concerns that delays in the matter being heard would threaten the freeness and fairness of the 2024 national and provincial elections.


“The judgment which was handed down more than a month after the urgent application was filed, dismissed the case of the Labour Party with no order as to costs,” said Labour Party secretary Krister Janse van Rensburg.

He explained that the judgment contained a minority dissent of some of the judges on the panel who agreed with most, if not all, of the Labour Party’s arguments.

After meeting with its legal team and considering the Electoral Court’s judgment and the minority dissent, the Labour Party made the call that the relief that was initially sought has effectively become moot.

Van Rensburg explained that a draft notice of motion outlining the gist of the case has been served on the IEC as a courtesy.

“As this matter is currently sub judice, and we are still busy drafting our court papers, we will reserve comment on the finer details of our case,” he said.

The party is confident that the ConCourt will see the “prejudice to be suffered” if political parties are excluded from participating in what is being called a critical election.

“Put simply, these elections will most definitely not be free and fair if the IEC is left to bar new parties when it itself admits serious shortcomings in an untested and glitchy online portal,” he added.

Van Rensburg said that even more compelling is the serious prejudice caused to the Labour Party, other new parties and the voters by the IEC and the Electoral Court dragging their feet for more than a month to pronounce on Labour Party’s case.

“It is a clear travesty of justice, and we are of the firm belief that the ConCourt will not allow this situation to prevail,” Van Rensburg said.


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