The EFF has won the first leg of its election banner battle with the City of Cape Town after it had been told to remove them for not complying with a city bylaw.
On Tuesday, the high court in Cape Town interdicted and restrained the city from removing the banners. The city has also been found to have contradicted itself in its communication to the EFF as to why it was not allowing the banners.
“The EFF has made a case for the interim protection of its right pending the review of the constitutionality of the bylaw,” acting judge Adrian Montzinger said in a judgment published on Tuesday.
“Pending the outcome of the constitutional challenge in part B of the notice of motion, the City of Cape Town is interdicted and restrained from removing the election banners of the Economic Freedom Fighters within the city metropole,” ordered Montzinger.
The EFF approached the high court on an urgent basis two weeks ago seeking an interim interdict to prevent the city from enforcing a bylaw regulating outdoor advertising and signage by removing its banners.
The party also challenged the constitutionality of the city’s Outdoor Advertising and Signage Bylaw, which it said was irrational and draws an arbitrary distinction between banners for functions and events and banners for electioneering.
Alternatively, the EFF wanted the bylaw to be reviewed and set aside.
The city wrote to the EFF on October 1 informing its leaders that its banners — hung on poles and bridges around the city and larger than a normal poster — were hung in violation of the city’s poster rules. The city requested the EFF to remove the banners by October 3, failing which the city would remove them at a cost to the party.