Multi-Party Charter takes action to ensure Election 2024 results reflect the will of the people

The eleven parties to the Multi-Party Charter For South Africa have written to a variety of foreign ministers and other representatives of relevant organisations, to request their assistance in ensuring that the results of the upcoming national and provincial elections accurately reflect the will of the people of South Africa.

These foreign ministers and organisations exist in the east and the west, the global north and global south as well as the African continent.

While we have qualified confidence in the Electoral Commission of South Africa, parties in the MPC are acutely aware that they have assembled the biggest voting bloc outside of the ANC in the history of our democracy. This, alongside the certain loss of a national ANC majority this year, means that the efforts to capture this election will be greater than ever before.  We recognise that our domestic efforts to ensure electoral integrity can and must be shored up.

In this respect parties in the MPC have resolved to collaborate to achieve 100% coverage across the more than 24 000 voting stations around the country. However this must be partnered by external support, which must include material assistance to South Africa’s civil society organisations on voter education, capacity-building for domestic monitors, and a robust presence of international observers ahead of the election, and on election day.

We have also conveyed our concern about the potential for foreign interference in our elections. We believe the international community can help to safeguard against any attempts to disrupt the democratic process or influence the South African electorate. Such technical support has been a core element of ensuring free and fair elections dating back to the first democratic election in 1994, which saw the election of Nelson Mandela.

We have appealed to foreign governments and relevant organisations to recognize the high stakes involved – for South Africa, for the continent of Africa, and for democracies globally. The 2024 elections will be the most crucial to take place in South Africa since 1994. For the first time in democratic South Africa, the ANC looks set to receive well below 50% of the national vote. This presents a window of opportunity for the democratic transfer of power to an alternative government.

But it also inevitably heightens the threat to electoral integrity. Therefore, the parties to the Multi-Party Charter are using every means available to us to ensure a free and fair election. Now is the time to rally all true supporters of democracy around South Africa’s democratic cause.