Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Public dialogue on elections gives people a platform to speak out

Andile Mbanjwa
26 March 2014

 Professor Steven Friedman

A public dialogue on South Africa’s national elections was held at the Centre for the Book at Gardens in Cape Town.

The dialogue, which was chaired by Professor Sakhela Buhlungu, dean of humanities at the University of Cape Town, and addressed by Professor Steven Friedman, director of the centre for the study of democracy at the University of Johannesburg, was focusing on the upcoming elections and the elements around the elections.

Speaking at the dialogue, Friedman called for the IEC head, Pansy Tlakula to step down as the head of the commission, following the IFP concerns about some of the IEC officials who are recruited from the ANC affiliate, SADTU.

The IFP argued that this will not ensure free and fair elections.

Friedman said, “If that’s an IFP concern it needs to be addressed. Elections are very much about confidence. The elections are very much about people having confidence if the process is fair. I think if any political party says it doesn’t want particular people in the electoral committee, those officials then need to be taken very seriously, and certainly the IFP’s point that SADTU Is affiliated to COSATU, which is an ANC allied is a valid point. So I think that makes IFP’s point justifiable.” 



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