Elections and Boundaries Department classifies on Representation of the People Act

Thursday, October 3rd, 2019

The Elections and Boundaries Department wishes to advise the general public that the Representation of the People Act clearly outlines the process and steps that are required to be taken prior to any individual becoming a registered elector. As such, the department operates strictly within the rule of law.

The Representation of the People Act states that the registering officer shall conduct investigations into the facts set out in each application. Furthermore, where the registering officer, after investigation, is not satisfied that the applicant meets the required qualifications as an elector, that elector is disallowed. All persons who are disallowed are given the opportunity to appeal the decision of the registering officer. On the other hand, in cases where the registering officer is satisfied that the applicant meets the qualifications, that elector’s name is included on the monthly supplementary list which is published on or before the 15th day of each month. Any person who is a registered elector for a particular electoral division can object to the decision of the registering officer to include the name of any person on the voter’s list for that particular electoral division. The period for objections/appeals is between the 15th and 25th of each month (see attachment).

Objections and appeals are healthy for democracy therefore the law provides for such to occur in the process. As citizens, all are encouraged to be a part of the electoral process and cooperate with the Elections and Boundaries staff when officers are conducting their investigations. We all have a role to play in safeguarding democracy in our country. As a department, we assure the general public that we are committed to ensuring that democratic principles are upheld.

The Representation of the People Registration Rules states as follows:

Rule 32 “The registering officer shall conduct an investigation into the facts set out in each application received by him and shall on or before the fifteenth day of each month publish a notice setting out a list of the names of the persons whose applications he has decided, after investigation, satisfy the conditions necessary for registration, and stating his intention to register such persons as electors in his division unless he receives objections thereto by the 25th day of that month. The notice shall also set down a date on which a revising court will sit to hear and determine any objections received within the prescribed time.”

Rule 10 (1) “Where the registering officer is not satisfied with the applicant’s claim to registration as an elector, he shall issue to that applicant a notice of disallowance in Form 7 as set out in the Fifth Schedule.
(2) Where a registering officer disallows an application for registration he shall record his reasons for the disallowance and a statement of his reasons shall be set out in the notice of disallowance
(3) Any person who is aggrieved by the decision of the registering officer under paragraph (1) may within ten days from the date of the notice of disallowance deliver to the registering officer and the revising officer of the division concerned a statement of appeal, to be heard at the same time as objections made against the registration of electors.”

Rule 38 “On or before the last day of each month every revising officer shall hold an open court for the purpose of determining whether the persons who have delivered to him a statement of appeal in terms of Rule 10, and the persons whose registration or continued registration is objected to under Rule 36, are persons entitled to be registered or retained as electors within his division.”

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