Record number of political parties set to contest 7 May elections


Following Wednesday’s deadline for the payment of deposits and submission of documentation including candidate lists by political parties, a total number of 33 political parties have indicated their intention to contest the election of the National Assembly - although three parties are yet to fully comply with prescribed deposits and may be ruled out before the election.

According to the legislation and Election Timetable, parties still have a window of opportunity until 24 March to submit any outstanding requirement.

If all 33 parties meet their obligation, this will be 7 more (26.9%) than contested the 2009 national election and just over double the number of parties (16) which contested in 1999. In South Africa’s historic first democratic election in 1994 there were 19 parties on the national ballot paper and 21 in 2004.

Even if the four parties which still have to comply with the nomination requirements were to be excluded, the ballot paper will still contain a record 29 contesting parties.

In terms of the provincial elections, the Western Cape will be the most contested province with 26 parties submitting lists (up from 22 in 2009).

This is followed by Gauteng with 22 parties having submitted lists (up from 20 in 2009), Limpopo with 20 (18 in 2009), the Eastern Cape with 18 (17 in 2009) and KwaZulu-Natal with 18 (17 in 2009), Free State with 17 (14 in 2009) and then Mpumalanga, the Northern Cape and North West with 16 parties each (respectively 15, 13, 16 in 2009).

These numbers may reduce slightly if the parties fail to meet their obligations before 24 March.

A provisional list of the parties which have submitted candidate lists for the national and provincial elections is attached.

The Electoral Commission has sent notices of non-compliance to all affected political parties. A total of 353 notices were issues by the Chief Electoral Officer on Saturday, 15 March 2014. Parties have until Monday 24 March 2014 to rectify any non-compliance.

The lists of candidates for each party (national, regional and provincial) will then be available for inspection from 28 March 2014.

Any objection to candidates must be submitted to the Electoral Commission’s head office in Centurion in writing before 17H00 on Tuesday 1 April 2014. Such objections must indicate the reason for the objection to a candidate and must show that a copy of the objection has also been lodged with the relevant political party.

The Commission will rule on the objections by Monday 7 April 2014 and any appeals to the rulings must be submitted to the Electoral Court by 10 April 2014.

The final deadline for decisions of the Electoral Court is 15 April 2014 following which the final list of candidates contesting the elections will be published on 22 April and certificates issued to candidates by 24 April.


Ensuring free, fair and credible elections


17 March 2014

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