Thursday, April 18, 2024

S’ Africa’s Election Management Body Bars Jacob Zuma From Polls

South Africa’s former President Jacob Zuma has been excluded from standing in the May 29 General Election in the country.

According to the President of South Africa’s electoral commission Mosotho Moepya, an objection to Zuma’s participation in the forthcoming elections has been upheld.

He said the party that has nominated him has been informed of the development as have those objecting to the move, adding however that decision can be appealed if lodged before April 2.

The electoral commission said in a statement that under the constitution “any person who was convicted of an offence and sentenced to more than 12 months imprisonment without the option of a fine” cannot stand in an election.

Zuma was sentenced to 15 months in jail in June 2021 after refusing to testify to a panel probing financial corruption and cronyism under his presidency.

Eighty-one year old Zuma, was forced out of office in 2018 under a cloud of corruption allegations.

He is campaigning for the opposition Mkhonto we Sizwe (MK) party in an attempt to relaunch his career and weaken his former party, the ruling African National Congress (ANC).

The general election, after which the victor will appoint a president, is set to be tense and the ruling ANC party is on the brink of dropping below 50 percent of the vote for the first time since it came to power at the end of apartheid.

The ANC has lost much support amid a weak economy and allegations of corruption and mismanagement.

Also, besides Zuma’s 2021 contempt conviction, he is facing separate charges of corruption in an arms procurement scandal in the 1990s, when he was vice president.

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