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Independent candidates eye ConCourt bid to contest elections

On Wednesday, the Western Cape High Court dismissed their urgent application to overturn electoral laws and allow South Africans to contest elections as individuals.

Political parties at the IEC code of conduct ceremony in Midrand. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Independents candidates aren't letting go of their fight to contest this year's elections.

They're planning to go all the way to the Constitutional Court to ensure their names are on the ballot paper come 8 May.

On Wednesday, the Western Cape High Court dismissed their urgent application to overturn electoral laws and allow South Africans to contest elections as individuals.

Judge Siraj Desai ruled that nothing prevents the applicants from forming political parties and in doing so contest elections.

The New Nation Movement and other parties wanted the court to force a change to the electoral laws and change a system that's party-centric.

They argued that the current party list system removes power from the electorate to choose their representatives putting it instead into the hands of parties.

Two other bodies, the Mediation Foundation for Peace and Justice and the Indigenous First Nation Advocacy group, argued that the electoral system prejudices individuals with political ambitions.

But Judge Desai disagreed, saying that there's nothing stopping individuals from forming a party of one and contesting elections in that way. He also noted the proximity of elections - just 21 days away.

Lawyers representing the applicants say they'll be filing an application to appeal the ruling as a matter of urgency.

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