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Former Deputy Chief Justice, Dikgang Moseneke, says the submissions made to the inquiry into whether COVID-19 will have an impact on the Local Government Elections will be made accessible to all stakeholders and the public. 

The Electoral Commission appointed Moseneke to lead a process of evaluating the impact of COVID-19 on conditions conducive for free and fair Local Government Elections to be held in October. 

The inquiry is expected to make findings and report on, and make recommendations concerning the likelihood that the Electoral Commission will be able to ensure the 2021 general local government elections will be free and fair, in view of the challenges posed by the COVID‑19 pandemic, and the measures promulgated by the government to curb the continued spread of the pandemic.

The inquiry is also charged with indicating what additional measures the Electoral Commission may be required to implement in order to realise free and fair elections within the context of the pandemic.

In statement on Thursday, Moseneke said the inquiry will be as transparent as possible and the submissions made to it, both orally and in writing, will be made accessible to all stakeholders and the public at large. 

“Should any member of the public or civic organisations choose to make submissions, they may notify us and, in any event, make submissions not later than Friday, 18 June 2021. Details of the website of the inquiry, as well as various means for the public to make submissions, will be made known in the near future,” Moseneke said.

Following the Electoral Commission’s announcement on 20 May 2021, an office has been established from which he will be coordinating all processes related to the inquiry.

Moseneke had an information session with the political parties represented in the National Party Liaison Committee on Thursday.

“In this discussion, representatives of the political parties pledged their support for this inquiry, and I had the opportunity to convey to them how the inquiry will be conducted,” Moseneke said.

He said the current plan is for the final report to be handed to the Electoral Commission by 21 July 2021, before the date of the proclamation of the Local Government Elections by the Minister.

 The inquiry can be reached at Tugela House, Floor 1, 1303 Heuwel Road, Centurion, 0157 or call 012 622 5574 or email freeandfair@elections.org.za.

SAnews.gov.za

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