IEC chair’s resignation welcomed
Opposition parties have welcomed the resignation of Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) chairwoman, Pansy Tlakula on Tuesday, after a court ruling in June, had discovered that procurement procedures into the IEC’s Riverside Office Park in Centurion, had neither been fair, transparent or cost-effective.
Despite launching an appeal, the findings were upheld by the Constitutional Court last month. An additional investigation, carried out Public Protector Thuli Madonsela last year, discovered that R320-million had been breached into the leasing of the office park in question.
“I leave the IEC with a heavy heart and wish to thank the President, the National Assembly and the people of South Africa for affording me the opportunity to serve in one of the most important institutions promoting democracy,” reports quote Tlakula as saying.
In a statement, United Democratic Movement (UDM) leader, Bantu Holomisa, said that although his party welcomes Tlakula’s departure, it came at a cost.
“She has at last seen the light, but it is a pity that she was forced to do so at great cost to government and political parties,” said Holomisa, whose party had called for her resignation leading up to last year’s general elections.
“There are now no more excuses; the Electoral Commission must immediately implement all the findings of the Public Protector, including those that fingered certain IEC officials. Let this be a lesson to other people in high places who believe they are untouchable and above the constitutional organs and courts of this country.”
Tlakula’s resignation was also supported by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), who also accused her of irregularities before the elections.
“She was a threat against democracy because she could be influenced by politicians. Her resignation has saved parliament from having to remove her to restore public trust and integrity to the institution of the IEC,” party spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi, wrote in a statement.
ANC national spokesperson, Zizi Kodwa, confirmed that the party has noted Tlakula’s decision, and wished her all the best for the future.
“Advocate Tlakula has served the people of South Africa with distinction and dedication over her more than a decade at the helm of the IEC, first as Chief Electoral Officer and later as Chairperson,” Kodwa said in a statement.
“As a result of the hard work by Advocate Tlakula and her team, the IEC has consistently delivered credible, free and fair elections. Their sterling work has been recognised as such not only in South Africa but beyond our country`s borders and the world.”
IMAGE sourced publicnewshub.co.za
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