'She should be ashamed of herself' - ANC slams Helen Zille over claims about its electoral court withdrawal
The ANC has dismissed a suggestions that its decision to withdraw an application to the electoral court for the reopening of candidate registration may be based on “leaks” from the Constitutional Court that an application to postpone the election was successful.
Zille shared the allegation on her social media platform this week while commenting on an article published by the Afrikaans publication Die Burger.
“If information is leaking from the ConCourt to the ANC, it is nothing short of a constitutional crisis.
“If this is so, cadre deployment will have destroyed every institution, right up to the ConCourt, turning them into instruments of ANC power abuse, rather than protectors of the people against ANC power abuse. That is the crisis we are facing now. South Africans must wake up,” she wrote in a lengthy post.
Zille said the ruling party must explain what changed in the few hours between the submission of its application and its withdrawal if it wants people to believe they made a “good faith” decision.
Attempts to get additional comment from Zille were unsuccessful at the time of publishing this article. Any updates will be included once received.
Responding to the claims in a statement, ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe said the claims shared by Zille were “malicious and baseless”.
Mabe said this was a “grave insult to the integrity of the ConCourt and the judiciary in general”.
“These insinuations are devoid of any truth. Not surprisingly. Zille does not adduce a shred of evidence to support her utterances,” he said.
“She should be ashamed of herself. We challenge her to withdraw these spurious allegations.”
According to Mabe, the ANC decided to withdraw its application to the electoral court in "the interests of avoiding a proliferation of litigation before the courts".
He said the ANC approached the electoral court after some political parties, including the ANC, failed to register all their candidates due to the pressure placed on the candidate selection process by Covid-19 restrictions on meetings.
He also said the ANC's failure to register all their candidates was exacerbated by challenges experienced on the IEC's online candidate registration system.
“The application to the ConCourt for postponement of the elections is based on the report by former deputy chief justice Dikgang Moseneke. The report concluded that it would be impossible to hold free and fair elections by October 27. This conclusion was based on extensive expert medical evidence and submissions by political parties."