Molefe Seeletsa
Digital Journalist
2 minute read
22 Jun 2021
5:11 pm

It will cost parties more than R400K to contest local elections

Molefe Seeletsa

The 2021 municipal elections will see more than 200 political parties and at least 65,000 independent candidates participate.

Picture: Erasmus Nche/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Political parties and independent candidates could see themselves pay a deposit of more than R400,000 to contest the 2021 municipal elections.

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This is after the proposed rates of election deposits were gazetted and published by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) for public comment last week Friday.

The proposed rates are as follows:

  • R3500 for metros.
  • R2000 for district councils.
  • R1000 for local councils.
  • R1000 for wards.

“The proposed amounts are unchanged from those set in municipal elections 2016 and reflect a decrease of between 50% for independent candidates and those choosing to contest a single ward, 12.5% for those contesting metro councils and 20% for those contesting local councils since municipal elections 2011,” the IEC said in a statement.

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The IEC said it had yet to decide on the amount for deposits. However, it will “consider all representations and comments in arriving at a final determination prior to the opening of candidate nominations”.

Comments must be submitted by 4pm on Friday, 2 July.

Total amount to contest elections

A political party contesting across all elections – which include 44 district councils, 205 local councils, eight metros and 4,468 wards – will have to pay R482,000 in deposits.

In comparison to the the 2019 national and provincial elections parties that contested all 10 elections, paid R605,000 each.

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The local government elections on 27 October will see more than 200 political parties and at least 65,000 independent candidates participate.

Voter registration is on 17 and 18 July, with 23,151 voting stations expected to open.

Elections budget

Last month, the IEC said R1.9 billion had been budgeted to cover the cost of the 2021 local government elections after Mamabolo conceded South Africa’s fiscal climate and battered economy had led to drastic cuts in commission operations amounting to R663 million.

The 2021-22 budget will see 27% spent on electoral operations, staff expansion and events.

Some 10% of the budget will be spent on registration, voting materials, warehousing and distribution costs, while 4% has been allocated to communication and media.

Additional information by Brian Sokutu