AR, ECN legal showdown this week

Home Crime and Courts AR, ECN legal showdown this week

Maria Amakali

The legal battle in which the Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement is suing the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) and government for failing to implement continuous voters’ registration as required by law will be heard this week.

Last week, the electoral tribunal scheduled for oral arguments in the matter to be heard on 30 September.AR filed the suit to get an order that will compel ECN to implement continuous voters’ registration.In their court papers, AR is claiming that since 2014 when the Act was amended to date, ECN has failed to properly implement the Electoral Act as required by law. They claim that ECN has been selectively implementing the Electoral Act without recourse.

In addition, ECN continued with the registration process during the state of emergency when many eligible voters were not within their constituencies. 
They claim that ECN should have relaxed or amended the dates for registration for this year’s regional council and local authority elections.
AR which is registered as an organisation and scheduled to contest in the upcoming local elections in November, claims ECN’s actions have caused many eligible voters the opportunity to register and take part in elections.

The movement argues that ECN is required by the Electoral Act to carry out three types of voter registration processes; general voters’ registration, supplementary voter’s registration and continuous voters’ registration to ensure all eligible Namibians are registered to vote.
AR is claiming that although the law requires ECN to set up functional offices in all constituencies in the country for continuous voter’s registration to take place, such is not the case on the ground.  
Furthermore, the registration process is required to take place throughout the year to ensure that all eligible voters have registered to vote.
AR further claims that ECN seems to be implementing the Electoral Act only when it suits their agenda and not as stipulated by law.