IEC wants reforms

No Image

The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) wants the electoral laws in the country to be reformed. Speaking at a seminar hosted for legislators, IEC executive secretary Gabriel Seeletso called on government to clamp down on voter trafficking by tightening penalties.

He singled out Section 25 of the Electoral Act for amendment to guard against voter transfers during by-elections. He said that the election date should be known well in advance and not left to the whims of the President. "The election date should be known well in advance, taking into account of course the possibility that, in the case of a general election, the President has the prerogative to (and in some circumstances may be forced to) dissolve Parliament earlier than at the end of the five year period.
"It is also essential that the Electoral Act gives the IEC the power to determine cut-off dates for registration so that all the rolls can be published and certified before a writ of election is issued."

Seeletso proposes that there must be automatic cut off dates and transfers. These must be the date on which a political vacancy occurs due to death, resignation or other means. In a series of envisaged reforms, the IEC proposes that it should be given power to postpone an election even on polling day. Seeletso told MPs that there was confusion in the interpretation of Section 50 and 66 of Botswana's Electoral Act. While Section 66(1) states that at the end of voting time, the presiding officer shall declare that no more persons shall be admitted in to the polling station, Section 50(3) states that the presiding officer may permit the taking of the poll to continue for a period not exceeding two hours.

Editor's Comment
A step in the right direction

That is indeed a welcome development, especially looking at the fact that the manual way of doing things is slowly disappearing and competency in the use of computers and other digital gadgets has become a must.The simple way of looking at it is just an example that almost all companies have gone completely digital and school leavers will be better placed after leaving school, because they will already be familiar with the use of computers.The...

Have a Story? Send Us a tip
arrow up