30/11/2017 10:50 SAST | Updated 30/11/2017 10:56 SAST

Battle For Metsimaholo: IEC Steps In To Investigate 'Vote Rigging'

The SACP has confirmed that it has handed over evidence to the IEC for investigation.

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The South African Communist Party (SACP) has handed over information regarding alleged vote rigging during by-elections in the Metsimaholo region to the Independent Electoral Commission.

The party's spokesperson in Free State, Phillip Kganyago, said the SACP made it clear to their alliance parter, the ANC –– against whom they are contesting the elections –– that the governing party should not be the ones demanding evidence of vote rigging.

He was responding to ANC demands for "irrefutable evidence" when vote rigging was first alleged on Wednesday, an issue which the party's national spokesperson has also addressed.

"We raised our issues during the IEC's Political Liaison Committee (PLC) meeting [on Wednesday]. It then becomes the responsibility of the IEC to investigate. We provided them with the information, and they are going to investigate," Kganyago said.

He said a follow-up meeting will be conducted on Thursday.

Free State ANC spokesperson Thabo Meeko could not be reached for comment.

HuffPost on Wednesday reported that a political party contesting the municipal by-elections allegedly submitted 5,000 names as special voters, more than 1,000 of who were found to be deceased.

READ: SACP v ANC: '1,000 Dead Voters On Metsimaholo Election Roll'

SACP spokesperson Alex Mashilo said on Wednesday that "an organisation" (he would not directly name the party involved) submitted 5,000 names as special voters in the election.

"It was discovered that at least 1,000 of them are deceased. Most of the others were people who no longer reside in those districts. We are asking what would be the motive [for] this?" Mashilo said.

Mashilo was defending his party's first deputy general secretary, Solly Mapaila, after the ANC earlier on Wednesday had released a statement demanding that Mapaila provide "irrefutable evidence" to back his claims that vote rigging took place at the by-elections.