Freedom Under Law calls for urgent release of reasons for decision by the Electoral Court

Freedom Under Law (FUL) notes the decision of the Electoral Court on 9 April 2024, which overturns a finding of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and allows for former President Jacob Zuma to be included on the list of candidates to contest the upcoming national elections for the MK political party.

The Court has to date only issued its order, with reasons for the decision still to be given.

FUL emphasises the importance of the decision. The former President had initially been disqualified based on an objection grounded in provisions of the Constitution which preclude anyone convicted of an office and sentenced to more than 12 months’ imprisonment from being a member of the National Assembly.

The need for an urgent decision on this matter is understandable, considering that elections are imminent. However, the reasons for the decision are of importance, both for the eligibility of the candidate in question, and as a general precedent. The rule of law requires that courts give fully motivated reasons for their decisions.

It is therefore critical for the credibility of the decision and the faith citizens have in the broader electoral process that reasons for the decision are provided speedily.

FUL therefore calls on the Electoral Court to issue its reasons for judgment urgently.