South Africa will head to the polls in around a years’ time. This is after the Independent Electoral Commission announced possible dates for the 2021 Local Government Elections.
This is due to the COVID-19 pandemic which has ruined a number of events in the country’s calendar including the elections.
The IEC held an editor’s webinar earlier Wednesday.
South Africans will have the opportunity to yet again elect their party of choice in 2021.
Consultations on a specific date as to when the Local Government Elections will be held are still taking place.
But the IEC says all systems are put in place to ensure that the elections take place smoothly.
Chief Electoral Officer SY Mamabolo says: “Therefore an election must happen between August 3 and November 3. Consultations with the Minister of CoGTA have commenced and that consultation is related to the optimum period next year which date the election will be held. A date will agreeable between the minister and the commission.”
Early in 2020, the coronavirus disrupted the work of the IEC, subsequently causing the commission to halt by-elections in various municipalities.
The commission is now planning to hold by-elections is a single day.
IEC Chairperson Glen MashininI says: “According to Section 25 of the Municipal Structures Act, by-elections may not be called six months ahead of general municipal and elections. That means we need to clear the backlog between now and February.”
Earlier in June, the Constitutional Court made a landmark ruling citing that independent candidates may now contest for provincial and national elections.
It has given the National Assembly 24 months to make the necessary amendments.
Meanwhile, South Africa is not the only country to postpone its by-elections.
Neighbouring Zimbabwe also halted its by-elections. The country’s electoral commission announced that they would soon publish its by-election schedule.
IEC Webinar on the families of Electoral Systems: