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IEC chair nominations close today

The process could still take some time but the clock is ticking ahead of the 2016 local government elections.

Nominations close today for the position of chair of the IEC. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Nominations close today for the position of chair of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) after advocate Pansy Tlakula resigned following a headquarters leasing scandal.

Tlakula stepped down in September after the Electoral Court said Parliament should recommend she be removed following a finding of misconduct against her.

She had been accused of maladministration for her role in a headquarters leasing deal.

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng will now chair a panel including Public Protector Thuli Madonsela and other Chapter Nine institution heads before recommending a candidate to Parliament.

This process could still take some time and the clock is ticking ahead of the 2016 local government elections.

Political analyst professor Steven Friedman once worked for the IEC and says the formation of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) may make finding the right person more difficult.

"The EFF has built a reputation for agreeing to nothing and it will be important to reassure the party of free and fair elections but we can't always please everybody."

He says elections are about ensuring the smaller parties that they will be treated fairly.

Last year, Madonsela released a damning report on the procurement process of the commission's R320 million Centurion offices from property developer Abland.

She found Tlakula guilty of maladministration and failing to disclose her relationship with Thaba Mufamadi, a part-owner of Abland.

Shortly before the 7 May elections, five political parties launched an application at the Electoral Court to have Tlakula removed from her post.

The matter was postponed after it was found that a decision could not be made before the nation went to the polls.