CIP loses bid at Electoral Court to have signatures recognised

Despite achieving the required amount to contest the provincial ballot, the IEC and electoral court dismissed the party on a technicality





Apr 19, 2024

CIP loses bid at Electoral Court to have signatures recognised

The Cape Independence Party's hopes to feature on the ballot paper for the 2024 elections were dashed after it lost its legal challenge against the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC). The party was among five applicants who approached the Electoral Court to contest their exclusion from the final candidates' list.

The judgment, handed down on Thursday, dismissed the party's application without costs.

Earlier this month, the party launched its legal bid after submitting 11,114 signatures to the IEC, with over 7,500 of them being registered voters in the Western Cape. However, despite surpassing the required number of signatures, which was around 7,000 for the Western Cape ballot, the IEC argued that the signatures were not submitted using the prescribed method.

Previous news reports my major news outlets like News24, which claimed they had only achieved 200 signatures, had to be corrected.

The party had raised concerns about the threshold for signatures, especially after the threshold for independent candidates was lowered to 1,000 signatures following a Constitutional Court ruling in December.

The Referendum Party managed to overcome the signatures issues and submit on time, with sufficient signatures to contest all three ballots, competing for both national Parliament lists, and the provincial list.

Expressing disappointment over the ruling, CIP leader Jack Miller stated, "In spite of us submitting a total of 11,114 signatures to the IEC, of which over 7,500 were registered voters in the Western Cape, the Electoral Court still ruled against us."

The party explained that they were unable to upload the signature files to the IEC's portal and were forced to submit them via email. The court, however, ruled that the only acceptable methods were via the IEC's online platform or in person at the Gauteng IEC offices.

Despite this setback, the party expressed optimism about contesting in the municipal elections in 2026.

The CIP's leadership has not yet announced whether they will be endorsing other secessionist parties this electoral cycle.

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