IEC's integrity intact - Mashile

Johannesburg - The integrity of the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) as an institution supporting democracy remains intact, Parliament's portfolio committee on home affairs said on Saturday.

Chairperson Lamias Mashile said the committee had full confidence that the IEC's other commissioners and senior management team would continuing the mandate of the commission.

This follows the decision by the Constitutional Court to dismiss IEC chairperson Pansy Tlakula's application for leave to appeal the Electoral Court's ruling that her misconduct in 2009 warrants her removal from office.

Mashile said the ruling had no direct impact on the commission's ability to deliver its mandate.

"The recent local government by-elections held in the absence of Tlakula attest to the strength of the internal mechanisms and structures of the IEC."

He said the Constitution and the legal framework that facilitated the establishment of the commission remained the bedrock on which the commission was based.

Before the 7 May elections several opposition parties approached the Electoral Court seeking Tlakula's resignation.

This followed a finding by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, and a subsequent forensic investigation by the National Treasury, over the procurement of the IEC's Riverside Office Park building in Centurion. Tlakula was chief electoral officer at the time.

Madonsela found Tlakula had a relationship, possibly of a romantic nature, with then chairman of Parliament's finance portfolio committee Thaba Mufamadi.

Mufamadi was a shareholder in Abland, which was awarded the R320m contract to lease the building.

The Treasury probe found the procurement process was neither fair, transparent, nor cost-effective. It found Tlakula neither gave guidance nor formally informed various people about what was expected of them in the process.