Municipalities must act on election posters

Anthony Benadie MPL

Provincial Leader – Mpumalanga

Note: The following member’s statement was made by Anthony Benadie MPL, Leader of the Official Opposition, to the Mpumalanga Provincial legislature, on 12 June 2014

Today marks 36 days since the 2014 National and Provincial election. It is common cause that during election periods, political parties are permitted to display party political posters and advertisements. Most municipalities in Mpumalanga have made sufficient provision in their municipal advertising by-laws, to allow political parties sufficient space to exercise their democratic right.

However, Honourable Speaker, these same municipal by-laws provide that when an election is over, that political parties must remove their election advertising material failing which, the municipality will remove the material and the party will forfeit their deposit and be charged for the cost incurred in removing the material.

As much as parties expect municipalities to respect our rights to advertise during campaigns, so too political parties must respect by-laws, and remove their material after an election. It is concerning that 36 days after the election thousands of ANC and other parties’ election posters still line the streets of our province.

Not only are many damaged and an eyesore, but it displays the arrogance and disregard that the ANC and others have for the laws and rules of our municipalities.

No party is above the law, and we today call on all municipalities to act in fairness and to implement their advertising by laws without delay, without fear or favour – and to  remove all party posters from poles and to charge them accordingly for the expense.