“There’s no evidence” – IEC issues update on double voting arrests

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The Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) stated that, based on preliminary evidence that has been collected, there’s nothing that supports the claims that the arrested suspects were guilty of double voting.

Note: Follow our live coverage of the 2019 general election results here.

The electoral body’s commissioner, Mosotho Moepya, stressed the fact that this was in no way, an attempt to undermine the ongoing investigation of the South African Police Service (SAPS).

IEC says there is no evidence of double voting

However, based on their observation, which included screening the identity information of the 20 suspects, there was no trace of their participation in the election process.

Related: IEC launches election results audit after four arrested for double voting

“I don’t want to interfere with the investigation of the police but the preliminary information is that, in the 20 [cases], none of them [have] voted twice. Allegations were very specific about the 12 (who were arrested in KwaZulu-Natal), that’s why they were arrested.

“In fact, in that number, there are people who did not even vote,” Moepya revealed.

Commission ready to dismiss double vote claims

The IEC’s commissioner noted that based on the prescripts of the Electoral Act, it does not have to conduct an audit on the election results. However, he claims that they decided to do so for the interests of South Africans and the watching world.

Related: SA Election results: EFF tails behind ANC in three key provinces

He also warned the media to tread carefully on spreading untested information, as that would only add fuel to the fire.

“Hyperbole has been allowed to flare up. We have given the benefit of the doubt. We have followed every lead. Where evidence has not been offered, or these allegations have not been sustained, [the] time has come for us to dismiss them.

“There is not a single one of the people that have been arrested, for which evidence exists that they have voted twice,” he said.

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