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By Citizen Reporter


IEC dismisses public’s objections against BLF’s Mngxitama and Maasdorp

The party continues to fight a battle against FF+ to contest elections, though time may be running out to keep them off the ballot in May.

In a notice released late on Monday, the Independent Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) announced its decision to dismiss all objections raised against the right of Black First Land First leader Andile Mngxitama and party spokesperson Lindsay Maasdorp to become MPs.

Both have courted controversy on numerous occasions for racially divisive rhetoric in service of their blacks-only party, which is standing in its first election in May.

According to the IEC, objections may be lodged against a candidate on the basis that they are not “qualified” to stand for elections, if they did not accept the nomination, or if they did not sign the IEC’s code of conduct.

Every citizen who is qualified to vote for national assembly representatives or provincial legislature members is eligible to stand for election, except for unrehabilitated insolvents and anyone considered incompetent to go to trial by the court. An unrehabilitated insolvent is a person who has been declared insolvent under a court order and who has not yet applied for and been granted a court order of rehabilitation.

Another condition on the IEC website reads: “Anyone who is convicted of an offence and sentenced to more than 12 months’ imprisonment without the option of a fine either in South Africa or outside the country if the offence would have been an offence if committed in South Africa. This disqualification ends five years after the sentence has been completed.”

Neither Mngxitama nor Maasdorp were found to be unqualified to stand as MPs.

The IEC also released the list of the 17 individuals who had objected to them, with eight of them objecting to the existence of the party itself.

They had objected on the grounds that their statements or conduct could be viewed as inappropriate for people who may be voted to parliament on May 8.

Mngxitama is first on the BLF list, while Maasdorp is seventh.

The Freedom Front Plus has also been clear about not wanting the BLF to contest the elections, claiming that the party has failed to comply with the electoral code and should not be allowed to state that only black people may join the party.

It launched an urgent application with the electoral court in Bloemfontein last month to nullify the BLF’s registration.

They, however, withdrew their High Court application in Johannesburg to have the BLF banned on Thursday.

It’s understood the Freedom Front Plus will still be pursuing their case against the BLF at the electoral court, with a decision likely by Friday.

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