Legislature must explain presence of ANC-mayoral candidate at voter education drive

The Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature’s voter education campaign, “Let’s get out and vote”, cannot be twisted to be the “Get out and vote for Danny Jordaan”-campaign. (Subs:  reports in The Herald and Daily Dispatch, 26 July 2016).  Imagine the accusations that would have been levelled by the ANC if Athol Trollip was there with the Speaker.

There needs to be a clear distinction between party and state.  This event crossed the line.  The campaign to increase voter turnout together with the Electoral Commission (IEC), should not have involved Danny Jordaan, who is a mayoral candidate for the ANC in Nelson Mandela Bay.

Today I have written a letter to the Speaker, Noxolo Kiviet, and to the Electoral Commission (IEC) objecting to the way they conducted themselves yesterday.

Legislature funds were approved for this campaign with the condition that only IEC- and legislature officials would be involved.  At the time I expressed my concerns that these funds could be abused for party political purposes.  I was assured that this was not the case.

State resources cannot be used promote a particular candidate of a particular party.  The legislature must explain why Danny Jordaan was present when he has nothing to do with the provincial legislature.

Furthermore, the IEC needs to explain as to what they were doing campaigning with Danny Jordaan and why an IEC official, Pam Sanqela, was quoted saying “The other paper is to vote for the mayor, we don’t mention names here”, when the IEC knows fully well that the second vote is for the party vote.

This incident once again highlights everything that is wrong with our politics and why voters should come out and vote and for change. — Bobby Stevenson MPL, Chief Whip