South Africa’s set October 27 municipal elections have been postponed to November 1 to give more time for COVID-19 vaccinations.
The electoral commission (IEC) had suggested postponing the polls to early 2022 because it would be hard to organise a fair vote with the pandemic, but the Constitutional Court dismissed the move on Tuesday by ordering that they be held by November 1.
These elections are taking place in unusual conditions,” Cooperative Governance Minister and Traditional Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma told a virtual press briefing, referring to anti-Covid measures.
Dlamini-Zuma added that the new date had been chosen in coordination with the IEC to allow the maximum possible time to prepare.
It would be officially proclaimed later in September following a voter registration weekend to be held by the IEC, which the court authorised to boost voter rolls.
Following the court’s judgement, the commission also re-opened the registration process for candidates – a boost for the governing African National Congress (ANC) which had failed to register candidates on time in dozens of municipalities.