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Brigalia Bam Provides a Glimpse Behind the Scenes of the IEC at the CCR Public Dialogue (Podcast)

Democracy - More Than Just ElectionsThe Centre for Conflict Resolution hosted a public dialogue earlier this year on the role of Chapter Nine institutions: those organisations, as laid out in Chapter Nine of the South African Constitution, which have been set in place to guard democracy.

Chapter Nine institutions include the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities; the Commission for Gender Equality; the Auditor-General; the Electoral Commission; and an independent broadcast regulation authority.

The CCR discussion was chaired by Professor Barney Pityana, with speakers Brigalia Bam and Mfanozelwe Shozi attempting to answer the question of whether or not Chapter Nine institutions have fulfilled their constitutional mandate.

Bam is the former chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and the author of Democracy – More Than Just Elections. Reflecting on her years as the head of the IEC, Bam explains the challenges that the IEC have had to face, such as issues of independence, budgets, impartiality and so forth.

“Chapter Nine institutions do work that is specialised in a way and we find that in the particular case of the Electoral Commission some people are not familiar with the acts of the commission, with the number of things that we do,” she says, adding that there is much confusion across the board with Chapter Nine institutions on who they are, how they work and what they do.

Listen to the podcast for this fascinating look at the inner workings of the IEC in particular, and Chapter Nine institutions in general:

 

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