Judgement on RDP urgent application Wednesday

25 Nov 2014 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 25 NOV (NAMPA) – Judgement on the urgent application to postpone the 2014 Presidential and National Assembly elections will be heard in the Windhoek High Court on Wednesday.
Judge Kobus Muller will deliver the verdict in the case by the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) and three other litigants, who claim that it is unconstitutional to use electronic voting machines (EVMs) for elections without a paper trail.
Submissions were heard in the High Court on Tuesday morning in the urgent application to postpone the elections which are scheduled for this Friday, to February 2015 because of the absence of a paper trail.
Director of the African Labour and Human Rights Centre, August Maletzky, who is one of the four applicants, emphasised that without a paper trail the elections can be rigged.
“As a result of using EVMs without a paper trail, the results of the by-elections held in Otjinene, Ohangwena, Endola and Windhoek West Constituencies are not verifiable, and that is inconsistent with the law of democracy,” he said.
Maletzky noted that there is no doubt that the use of EVMs provides the ECN and the ruling party with the perfect opportunity to rig the elections.
He added that the absence of voter verification means that results cannot be audited nor does it provide the parties with a possibility of a recount.
Maletzky further said that voters will never be able to confirm to which candidate or party their votes were cast, as there is no proof who voters vote for.
Windhoek lawyer Sisa Namandje, who represented the ECN and the Namibian Government as the first and second respondents respectively, earlier today said the application should be annulled because not all respondents were served with summonses to appear in court on Tuesday, hence their absence from court.
He, however, said the court challenge is a special matter because of the upcoming Presidential and National Assembly elections.
“We cannot be held hostage because a careless litigant came to court with their papers in shambles,” said Namandje.
He then asked the judge to dismiss the application with legal costs of two legal representatives.