IEC gives Mashaba’s Action SA 30 days to appeal rejection of registration

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  • The IEC has given Herman Mashaba’s Action SA 30 days to appeal its decision. 
  • This after it rejected Action SA’s application to register as a political party. 
  • The party has been accused of allegedly stealing another party, Party of Action SA’s name and logo.

Herman Mashaba’s Action SA has been given 30 days to appeal the decision taken by the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) which rejected its application for political party status. 

In a statement, the IEC said that following research into the ballot paper design in 2018, which showed that voters used party logos as the primary distinguishing identifier to select their party, more prominence had been given to party logos on the ballot paper to make it easier for voters to identify their party of choice and to limit votes cast inadvertently for other parties.

“The letter informed Action SA that it has two options in response: it may amend its symbol and publish a fresh notice of application; or it may appeal to the Commission against the decision of the Chief Electoral Officer within 30 days,” the statement read. 

READ | As Mashaba launches new party, Steenhuisen takes swipe at splinter parties

Action SA had since threatened to lodge an appeal and possible court action against the IEC, calling its decision regrettable. 

This came after the Party of Action (POA) objected to Action SA’s application on the basis that the proposed logo was too similar to its own.

In a statement released earlier this month, POA president Billy Nyaku accused Mashaba of stealing his party name and logo. Nyaku accused Mashaba of paging through the IEC’s list of political parties looking for a logo and party name he could copy.

READ | IEC rejects registration of Herman Mashabas Action SA party appeal in the works

“Every political party should be unique on [the] ballot paper for evasion of confusion for the voting elders. Stealing Party of Action SA logo cements Mashaba’s ever-existent disregard for poor people within [a] political context on account of his stance about poor people in one of his interviews; that they cannot lead because they are likely to steal from [the] public purse if elected to public office,” said Nyaku.

“Considering that almost all POA leaders are poor, it is undeniable that he just did not view them as fit for public office as he instantly developed [a] monster appetite to feed on creativity of their party’s logo and name.”

Nyaku said his party wanted Mashaba to drop the Action SA name and logo which had a “98% similarity with ours”.

He said Mashaba should “use his so-called entrepreneurial spirit if he still has to be innovative and come up with a new name and logo to embrace uniqueness of identities of political organisations in SA in the name of free and fair elections”. 

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