The IEC and the 2014 Elections: A Mark of Institutional Maturity?

South Africa’s election management body, The Electoral Commission of
South Africa (IEC), faced an unprecedented situation in the run-up to the
country’s fifth elections. Its chairperson, Pansy Tlakula, was found to have
behaved in a manner unbefitting an electoral commissioner. Her misconduct
raised concerns about whether or not the IEC would manage the elections
impartially. These concerns, together with the prescribed censure for
conduct unbecoming of a commissioner, led to a clamour for her removal.
The proximity of the elections, however, militated against the resolution of
the saga, leading to Tlakula staying on to oversee the elections. This article
looks at whether the imbroglio had an impact on the reputation of the IEC.
To make this determination, the article draws on survey findings about the
IEC’s administration of the elections. Part of the spotlight falls on how the
responsible institutions, particularly Parliament and the courts, handled
the problem. The article employs an institutionalist theoretical framework
to explain its conclusions.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Journal of African Elections
Tags: 2014 General Elections, ANC, DA, Electoral Court, Independent Electoral Commission (IEC)
journal of african elections vol14 number 1 transparent democratic governance in africa