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IEC upholds objections to Zuma’s nomination to parliament

Neelam Rahim |

3-minute read
05 April 2024 | 16:58 CAT

Jacob Zuma. Picture: VELI NHLAPO

The Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) has endorsed objections to former president Jacob Zuma’s nomination to stand for parliament.

Zuma was sitting at Number 1 on the parliamentary list for the MK Party (uMkhonto Wesizwe).

However, on Thursday, the IEC decided unanimously to block his bid to contest the elections following an objection that cited his criminal record.

His criminal record stems from a 15-month prison sentence handed down by the Constitutional Court after a contempt of court conviction in 2021.

Section 47 (1)(e) of the Constitution prohibits any citizen from becoming an MP if they have been sentenced to prison for longer than 12 months without the option of a fine.

In reaction, the MK Party warned that the Constitution could not supersede the people’s will. The party stated that the people would decide if they would contest elections without Zuma as they had already decided they wanted President Zuma to lead them.

Political Analyst Zakhele Ndlovu discussed the ruling of the IEC with Radio Islam International.

Zakhele explained that the IEC’s decision is correct and in line with the Constitution, as Zuma is a convicted felon, which prevents him from running for Public Office.

“We live in a country that is a Constitutional Democracy, a country where there is a rule of law,” he says.

Meanwhile, the MK Party believes the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) had no business upholding constitutional provisions blocking former president Jacob Zuma’s nomination to stand for parliament due to a previous jail sentence.

The party stated this in court papers filed Tuesday to the electoral court. It is challenging the commission’s decision not to allow Zuma to contest for a seat in parliament in this year’s elections.

In a statement, the MK Party affirmed that the application of Section 47 (1)(e) of the Constitution does not apply to Zuma.

Listen to the full interview on Radio Islam International with Muallimah Annisa Essack.


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