Quote of the week

It is necessary that the integrity of the electoral process be maintained. Indeed, the acceptance of the election as being free and fair depends upon that integrity. Elections must not only be free and fair but they must be perceived as being free and fair. Even-handedness in dealing with all political parties and candidates is crucial to that integrity and its perception by voters. The Commission must not be placed in a situation where it has to make ad hoc decisions about political parties and candidates who have not complied with the Act. The requirement that documents must be submitted to the local offices of the Commission does not undermine the right to vote and to stand for election. It simply gives effect to that right and underscores the decentralised and local nature of municipal elections.

Ngcobo CJ
Electoral Commission of the Republic of South Africa v Inkatha Freedom Party
27 November 2006

Same-sex marriage passes last hurdle

The NCOP committee voted today for an unamended version of the Civil Union Bill despite vociferous objections from religious groups. This just goes to show that the “compromise” of creating two marriage acts did not appease religious groups.

Why then compromise? Why not amend the Marriage Act and get it over with?

I suspect it has more to do with the politics within the ANC than with any attempt to appease religious groups. A separate act may have made it more palatable for ANC MPs to vote for the Bill. It gives them something to defend back home.

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