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Electoral Reform in South Africa – Part 3

The Inclusive Society Institute’s expert panel looking into electoral reform in South Africa met on 25 August 2020 to further elaborate on the design of a new electoral model for South Africa. The necessity to develop a new electoral model has been spurred by the recent Constitutional Court judgement declaring the current electoral model invalid. It has given the legislature two years to introduce new legislation that will enable independent candidates to stand for election in the national and provincial spheres of government.

Discussions have to date focussed on garnering a clear understanding as the prescripts of the Constitutional Court’s judgement and the electoral boundaries set by the Constitution. At this meeting of the panel presentations were made by experts on electoral models in several jurisdictions that employ proportional representation electoral systems that also provide for the participation of independent candidates.

Presentation were made by:

  • Professor emeritus Jørgen Elklit, Aarhus University, Denmark on the findings of the Van Zyl Slabbert Commission on Electoral Reform in South Africa and the Danish model.

  • Professor Michael Krennerich, University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, on the German electoral system.

  • Professor Ignacio Lago Peñas, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelo, on the Spanish electoral system.

  • Professor Dave Farrell, University College Dublin on the Irish PR/STV system

In its next phase of deliberations, the panel will start to conceptualise unique South African models that will give effect to the ruling of the judgement.


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