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The code of conduct calls on all political parties to refrain from engaging in violence and making threats against other parties.

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South Africa
Witnessing the signing, Glenton Mashinini, Chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), urged the parties to adhere to their pledge, saying the Electoral Act requires that the code of conduct must be subscribed to by all political parties and candidates before they can be allowed to contest an election.

This is to ensure that the contestants are aware of the rules of the game, he said.

Mashinini also called on the civil society, faith-based organizations and traditional leaders to promote peace and tolerance in the country.

President Jacob Zuma promised that the ruling African National Congress (ANC) would take part in the elections in a professional way and respect other parties.

Zuma said, “The ANC reaffirms its commitment to political tolerance, peaceful coexistence with other political as well as free political activity throughout the country. We look forward to a robust and peaceful electioneering period at equal level.

African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) leader Reverend Kenneth Meshoe promised to follow the code of conduct to the letter.

“As the people who believe there is power in the tongue, we will use our tongue to build and not destroy. We will use the language that is acceptable and promote unity and tolerance,”Meshoe said.

Mmusi Maimane, leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA), said his party will uphold and defend the code of conduct to ensure that free and fair elections be held.

The IEC should be at the forefront to ensure that free and fair elections be held, he added.

Maimane invited the international community to come and observe the elections.

“The electoral process is very difficult but with the kind of partnership we have with political parties, you will make it easier so that the results reflect the will of the people,”IEC Deputy Chairperson Terry Tselani said.

The local government elections are scheduled for August 3 this year.

In the past, some political parties attacked each other and stopped others from campaigning in certain areas.

According to the Electoral Act, any party that violates the code of conduct may be fined up to R200, 000 (12,953 U.S.dollars), perpetrators be imposed a 10-year prison sentence, party candidates disqualified or party registration cancelled. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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