The United Democratic Movement has been advocating for the postponement of the upcoming Local Government Elections, before the Former Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke’s Inquiry was established, until the Inquiry’s report that was released early this week proved that the UDM and the 99.9% of other parties were indeed precise that the 2021 LGE should be postponed to at least April, 2022.
It makes no sense to hold elections during the spiking third wave of Covid-19. As a Country we have witnessed the devastation this deadly virus has caused, claiming thousands of lives, now we cannot afford to gamble with the lives of voters.
Also, the Government Covid-19 regulations make it extremely difficult to hold Political events, such as election of candidates, rallies and door-to-door campaigns as these require large numbers either be indoors or outdoors.
The UDM calls on the Department of Health nationally and provincially to speed up the vaccination process, so that before the holiday season there would be a decent number of citizens that would have been vaccinated, and the Government may then ease the lockdown regulations.
The IEC’s focus should not only be on the stipulation or requirement of the RSA Constitution with regards as to when the elections should be held, and that they are free and fair but it must also prioritize the safety of the voters at large.
The UDM also calls for flexibility when the IEC apply for the postponement as there are no guarantees as to when this pandemic will end. Lives of the voters are at stake.
Ms Thandi Nontenja
UDM Treasurer General