Tlakula hits back at critics

Pansy Tlakula says there is no evidence that her presence would render the elections illegitimate.

FILE: IEC Chairperson Pansy Tlakula addresses farm workers in Benoni, Johannesburg, 22 January 2014. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG - Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) Chair Advocate Pansy Tlakula has told the Electoral Court the five opposition parties, who want her to step down, have not provided any evidence that her presence would render the elections illegitimate.

The parties have asked the court to recommend to the National Assembly she be removed from her post after the public protector made findings against her relating to a headquarters leasing deal.

Tlakula is accused of being in a business relationship with Thaba Mufamadi who is on the ANC's electoral list to return to Parliament.

In her papers, Tlakula says the claim her continued presence in the commission will render these elections illegitimate in the eyes of the public is baseless and no evidence has been brought to substantiate it.

She also says the IEC is currently running well and that she has been participating in the process of dealing with objections against candidates.

Tlakula says so far no parties have objected to her being a part of that process.

She also says no one has yet accused her of being less than impartial.

Tlakula has repeated her claim that if she does step down now the IEC's running of the elections will be placed in jeopardy because there would be only four commissioners and no way to break a deadlock between them.

South Africa goes to the polls on 7 May.