Pretoria – The African Union election observer missions said on Friday that South Africa’s 2014 general elections had been free and fair.
The head of the AU observer mission, Prof Ibrahima Fall, said: “The preliminary conclusion is that the elections were free, fair and transparent.”
Fall praised the Independent Electoral Commission’s use of technology in conducting the elections.
“The process was elaborate to ensure accountability,” he said.
“The capturing and transmission of votes are done electronically and are efficient.”
Former Ghanaian president John Kufuor, a member of the mission, was not overly concerned about the discovery of ballot papers found dumped in Pretoria and Diepsloot, north of Johannesburg.
“I don’t think the incidents were too many considering the size of the country and its history.
“We believe that the IEC will move from strength to strength from here,” Kufuor said.
He went on to say that South Africa had set the bar for other countries in the continent.
“This is a preliminary report, but I can assure you its going to become the final one,” he said.
The AU deployed 57 observers across the nine provinces during the elections.
The Southern African Development Community’s observers said the country had been adequately prepared for the elections.
“I congratulate the IEC, government, society and media for their orderly and peaceful elections whose outcome has no doubt reflects the will of the people, ” said SADC head of observer mission, Justice Lehohla. – SAPA