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KMM Review Publishing

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Former IEC Chairperson Brigalia Bam Argues for a New Electoral Regime for South Africa in Her Autobiography

Democracy, More than Just ElectionsKMM Review Publishing is proud to announce the forthcoming publication of Democracy, More than Just Elections by Brigalia Bam, with a foreword by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu:

Brigalia Bam’s name has become synonymous with the IEC; understandably so, since she spent 12 years at the helm of the organisation. With the resignation of Judge Johan Kriegler, Bam, who was his deputy, was thrust centre stage by then president Nelson Mandela, just months before the second democratic elections in 1999.

This appointment did not go down well in some circles and drew much scepticism and criticism. To say that she acquitted herself well is an understatement: her critics were silenced.

Her leadership roles at well-known international institutions and organisations – the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA), the World Council of Churches (WCC) in Geneva, Switzerland and the International Union Federation (IUF) among others – equipped her for the huge task of leading the new South Africa’s second democratic elections.

Her book, Democracy, More than Just elections is an introduction to Brigalia Bam – her history, from her youth to her departure from South Africa and her 21-year sojourn in Europe and her return to South Africa – as well as various aspects of her tenure as the head of the IEC.

The “burning issues” and challenges that she faced are chronicled in the book, from the toilet wars in the Western Cape and Free State to Tlokwe, a convoluted saga that continues today. She discusses the link between service delivery protests and elections, boundary demarcations and battles and other contentious issues that tested her integrity.

Democracy, More than Just Elections not only provides an insight into various dimensions of Brigalia Bam’s tenure at the IEC – it also presents an argument for a new electoral regime for South Africa, one that will encourage greater responsibility and accountability from political leaders.

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