There will be no vote rigging now that I’m here, says Magashule

African Congress for Transformation’s Ace Magashule. | Timothy Bernard Independent Newspapers

African Congress for Transformation’s Ace Magashule. | Timothy Bernard Independent Newspapers

Published Jan 14, 2024


Former ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule comments that there will be no “vote rigging” now that he will be contesting the upcoming elections under his own party, the African Congress for Transformation (ACT).

The party has raised questions over the credibility of the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC).

Magashule made the comments recently while on an election campaign trail in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, where he urged supporters not to waste their votes on the ANC.

While speaking to reporters, Magashule seemingly alluded to there having been a history of vote rigging.

He said: “We are going to win elections, we’re very confident. There is not going to be any rigging of elections. Our eyes are open because we know, I’ve been part of the ANC, we know what’s going to happen.

“We, as black parties, we have learned and we have agreed that we are not going to allow any elections to be rigged.”

When asked if this meant the ANC had rigged previous elections while he was with the ruling party, he backtracked and said “no”, and went on to explain that his comments were merely to explain to people that tactics by his former party that they would lose grants should the party be ousted were not true.

Activists and Citizens Forum spokesperson Dennis Bloem said Magashule’s comments, however, confirmed opposition parties’ suspicions regarding vote rigging.

For many years, he said, many opposition parties suspected election vote rigging in favour of the ANC, both at national and local elections.

“We knew that nobody could suppress the truth forever. The utterances of the former ANC secretary-general Ace confirmed our suspicions that, in fact, vote rigging is taking place at the IEC.

“Ace is saying that he knows what is happening in the IEC, but this time, the eyes of all opposition parties will be wide open so that vote rigging must not happen. This is a clear vote of no confidence in the IEC,” Bloem said.

He said it was for this reason that the organisation was calling for a complete overhaul of the IEC structure.

This was not the first time that Magashule has hinted that the IEC was not immune to rigging votes in favour of the ANC.

Speaking to the Sunday World in October, IEC head Sy Mamabolo rubbished assertions that vote rigging was highly likely, given the potential of the ANC party losing its outright majority rule.

Mamabolo explained that the IEC system, from voting and counting to the capturing of results, was extremely rigorous, and that any rogues trying to muddy the process would easily be caught. | The Star

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