At exactly 5pm yesterday Independent Electoral Commission chief electoral officer Pansy Tlakula closed the door on candidate list submissions to contest the upcoming elections.
With a slight smile on her face outside the electoral house in Pretoria, Tlakula said: "Whoever was not inside at five o'clock will have to wait another five years to contest the national elections."
There were no last minute arrivals except for a member of the African Christian Alliance who hurried up the steps at 4,49pm to hand in his list.
Tlakula said the first party to contest the elections was the Minority Front, which made submissions last Wednesday.
However, 90percent of those who intended to contest the elections had waited until the last day to make their submissions.
"It's a huge positive step as the door closes at five o'clock," said Tlakula.
She sternly reiterated that parties could not change their lists or make any substitutions.
Tlakula would not comment on how many parties had submitted their lists, saying she would brief the media at 11am today.
Speaking just under two hours before the IEC deadline of 5pm, ANC spokesperson Brian Sokutu said the entire list had been submitted. "We can confirm that we have complied with what is expected by the IEC. The entire list has been submitted to the IEC," he said.
The DA also submitted its list on time. "It was submitted this morning," said federal executive chairman James Selfe.
He said the lists amounted to almost 870 names.
"We've submitted the maximum number of candidates we could submit," he said.
Cope spokesperson Charlotte Lobe confirmed at 4,30pm that the party had also submitted its list. Lobe declined to publicly name the party's candidate for premier of Limpopo, saying the announcement would be made "in the next hour".
Political parties contesting the April 22 elections nationally and provincially were given until 5pm to submit their lists.
The draw for the party to top the ballot papers would take place on March 11. After that first name, the others would follow alphabetically. - Sapa