By-elections: ANC wants DA councillor disqualified

Polokwane - The ANC in Limpopo on Wednesday called for the disqualification of a DA councillor accused of not being registered to contest the Peter Mokaba by-election to be held in Polokwane later in the day.

The African National Congress's regional co-ordinator Eugene Masethe said in a statement that Democratic Alliance councillor Roelof Lourens was registered in Ward 22 of the Polokwane municipality, not in Ward 23 where the by-election would take place.

Masethe said up until 6 August, Lourens was registered as a councillor in the Greater Tubatse municipality.

"He was just parachuted into Ward 23, and he does not even feature on its voter's roll for these by-elections.

"According to the IEC records, he is [now] registered in Ward 22 of the Polokwane municipality, and this should disqualify him from participating in Ward 23's by-election."


Masethe said the party was made aware of Lourens's intention to contest in Peter Mokaba on 28 July and lodged an objection with the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) on 4 August.

Lourens then resigned as councillor in Greater Tubatse on 6 August and registered in Polokwane.

Masethe said the party had taken the matter up with the IEC.

"The ANC has raised this matter with the IEC in vain, and deems today's by-election as unfair and unjust."

Masethe said the IEC informed the party on Monday that it would not grant the objection, and that as far as the commission was concerned Lourens could contest.

The IEC was not immediately available for comment.

DA national spokesperson Marius Redelinghuys said candidates did not need to be registered in a ward, but only in a municipality.

"There are no grounds for disqualification as we have complied with this," said Redelinghuys.