Sunday, September 14, 2008


Swazi Observer

29 August 2008

CANGO angers EBC

The Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) has taken strong exception to accusations by CANGO that it is running chaotic elections.

CANGO said it was disappointed with the way the EBC was running the show, basing its conclusions on media reports.

It even questioned the credibility of the electoral process itself, in view of the alleged anomalies.

But deputy EBC chief, Mzwandile Fakudze said he felt bound to tell CANGO exactly where to get off - particularly because it was unfair on the EBC to be judged by media reports which are interpretative in nature.

Fakudze said CANGO's sponsors expect the organisation to take its rightful role as a stakeholder in the electoral process.

He said CANGO by its nature should not be whining but should be carrying out civic education on the populace, on elections.

"CANGO is our collaborating partner, it has a duty to teach the public about the various aspects of the elections, in terms of Section 90 (7) b of the constitution, which talks if civic and voter education.

"CANGO should not attach the credibility of the elections to newspaper reports - in fact, they should not even question the credibility of the process.

"The elections were free and fair because no one was compelled to vote - people did so on their own free will.

There was also no preferential treatment. When the ballot papers got finished in some polling stations, the process was carried forward to the next day until everyone got the opportunity to vote.

"If you claim people stood for long hours on lines, waiting to vote - how does that affect the credibility of the election process?

"As the EBC on this election, we did meet the standards of fairness, freeness and transparency - which all in all make up for credibility."


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