National Freedom Party won't be up for August 3 elections after failing to pay IEC

Voting ballot papers are collected during the 2014 elections. (Delwyn Verasamy, M&G)

Voting ballot papers are collected during the 2014 elections. (Delwyn Verasamy, M&G)

The National Freedom Party will not be able to contest the upcoming local election on August 3 after it failed to pay the required deposit to the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) before the June 2 deadline. 

The party’s spokesperson Sabelo Sibugu said the NFP isn’t broke, but missed the IEC deadline because of a leadership crisis within the party.

The NFP is the second party to be disqualified by the IEC. 

The Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) was disqualified after it reportedly failed to comply with the electoral commission’s participation requirements.

Sibugu blasted the NFP’s leaders for submitting the required IEC documents and deposit to the last minute. “We told our leaders not to use the online system as to avoid such issues, but no one listened,” said Sibugu.

The NFP has approached the electoral court to appeal its disqualification, as the party claims to have paid the deposit before the required deadline.

According to the IEC, political parties are required to pay a deposit of R4000 for a metropolitan municipality or R2000 for a local council election, which covers all ward and proportional representation elections in that metropolitan or local council election. It is understood that the NFP’s registration fee amounted to just under a R100 000.

The NFP said that it had initially paid a cheque to the IEC within the required deadline, but the cheque bounced. When the IEC notified the party last week that it had not received the NFP’s deposit, another payment was immediately made.
The party said that it has already invest a lot of money and time in campaigning for the elections, and it is confident the IEC will reserve its decision.

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