BLOEMFONTEIN – The Democratic Alliance has laid criminal charges against the African National Congress in the Free State for allegedly damaging DA election posters in Bloemfontein.
“ANC members were seen pasting their provincial manifesto launch posters on top of DA election posters. This act shows total disregard for the IEC [Electoral Commission of SA] electioneering code and the rule of law,” Free State DA leader Patricia Kopane said.
“According to the IEC, defacing, damaging, or removal of any election material is a serious criminal offence. Section 91 of Chapter 7 is explicit in the prohibitions concerning voting and election material,” she said.
All political parties had a right to erect posters during the election period. Before any election, political parties signed a code of conduct. By doing that, they committed themselves in ensuring that elections were free and fair.
The DA urged every law-abiding citizen to help fight against the “unlawful and undemocratic campaign by the ANC” and to report any incidents of poster vandalism or removal of such.
Political tolerance was a necessity where citizens, including those affiliated to other political parties, were free to exercise their rights without being intimidated. The DA remained committed to a free and fair election campaign, Kopane said.
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