IEC calls on parties to behave

Sicelo Dladla

Sicelo Dladla

The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) in KwaZzulu-Natal has appealed for cooperation from political parties especially in the run-up to next year's elections.

Their appeal comes after Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) supporters allegedly disrupted a government function at Bergville in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands late on Tuesday.

The IFP has rejected the allegations, saying people had left the tent to attend an IFP meeting and that was what had angered ANC leaders.

Mawethu Mosery, IEC chairman, said they would only intervene if a formal complaint was lodged with them and which had as yet not happened.

"We will investigate the matter to find out if conditions in Bergville and other areas are conducive or not for free and fair elections."

Mosery said it was the "duty and mandate" of the IEC to promote a climate of free and fair elections.

The speaker of the provincial legislature, Willies Mchunu, said a large group of toyi-toying IFP supporters burst into the tent, tossed chairs into the air, blew whistles and sang, disrupting the function for 30 minutes.

Security forces and bodyguards had to form a ring of steel to protect officials and Mchunu.

"I am really concerned about the situation prevailing in the province, especially the attitude of some people.

"Since the attack happened in the area where there are elections, it shows that some people would be prevented from campaigning freely and fairly next year," Mchunu said.