DA granted permission to use its own seal on May 8 ballot boxes

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has been granted permission to apply its own seal to ballot boxes during the upcoming general election, which the party says will help protect the integrity of the results.

The Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) says the Electoral Act allows political parties to attach their own seals to ballot boxes to ensure they are not tampered with.

In the aftermath of the 2014 election, ballot boxes were found in various areas of Gauteng — namely Alexandra, Diepsloot and Lynnwood Ridge — according to reports at the time.

READ MORE: IEC: Election wasn’t perfect, but it was free and fair

Although no fraud was found to have been committed, the IEC admitted at the time that the procedure set out to handle the ballot boxes after the votes were counted had not been followed. Following the discovery, the Economic Freedom Fighters alleged that the result in Gauteng was rigged, although there was no proof of this.

The May 8 polls are expected to be closely fought, particularly in provinces such as Gauteng and the North West, where every vote cast will count to determine who governs. The governing party’s own polling in Gauteng shows that the province could swing either way, with its support standing at 50% among registered voters.

The Mail & Guardian understands that the DA will apply its own seals to ballot boxes, which the party itself will break when the votes are counted. According to sources within the party, this is being done to “protect votes” and assist in ensuring the credibility of the result.

In response to questions from the M&G, the IEC confirmed this.

“It is correct that political parties may bring their own seals and attach to full ballot boxes, as prescribed in the Electoral Act. This has been the case in all elections,” the commission said.

READ MORE: IEC stays calm in the face of chaos

The aim of the seal on ballot boxes is to ensure that the ballot boxes are not tampered with. The commission also provides seals for all ballot boxes.

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever. But it comes at a cost. Advertisers are cancelling campaigns, and our live events have come to an abrupt halt. Our income has been slashed.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years. We’ve survived thanks to the support of our readers, we will need you to help us get through this.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Natasha Marrian
Natasha Marrian
Marrian has built a reputation as an astute political journalist, investigative reporter and commentator. Until recently she led the political team at Business Day where she also produced a widely read column that provided insight into the political spectacle of the week.

Eskom refers employees suspected of contracts graft for criminal investigations

The struggling power utility has updated Parliament on investigations into contracts where more than R4-billion was lost in overpayments

Locally built ventilators ready in two weeks as Covid cases...

The companies making the non-invasive devices, which will create jobs and are cheaper than other types, include car and diving manufacturers

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday