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Party’s were deregistered for non-compliance, ECN

The Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) has announced the de-registration of three political parties due to non-compliance with the Electoral Act 5 of 2014. The affected parties are the Christian Democratic Voice Party (CDV), the Democratic Party of Namibia (DPN), and the Namibia Economic Freedom Fighters (NEFF). According to the ECN, their names have been removed from the Commission’s Political Parties and Organisations/Associations’ Register.

In a media statement, the Commission said the action follows a comprehensive review of the parties’ adherence to sections 140 and 158 of the Act, which revealed significant non-compliance. These sections pertain to the maintenance of records, the conduct of audits, and the financial accountability of political parties represented in Parliament.

The Commission’s statement also addresses several misconceptions and incorrect assertions regarding the de-registration process. Since 2019, the Commission has engaged all political parties to highlight compliance obligations and the consequences of non-compliance. Despite these efforts, including correspondence and reminders, many parties failed to meet the required standards.

Key provisions for compliance include:

– Section 140: Record-keeping and audits of registered political parties.

– Section 158: Financial accountability for funds allocated to political parties represented in Parliament.

– Section 139: Declaration of assets and liabilities.

– Section 141: Disclosure of foreign and domestic financing.

In November 2021, the Commission set a compliance deadline of March 31, 2022. Following poor responses, a workshop was held in September 2022 to reinforce the importance of compliance, and the deadline was extended to August 31, 2022. Many parties, however, missed this deadline.

In June 2023, the Commission engaged with the non-compliant parties individually, granting a further extension to November 30, 2023. While some parties achieved partial compliance, others, including CDV, DPN, and NEFF, continued to fall short.

Details of Non-Compliance:

– Christian Democratic Voice (CDV): Submitted an audited financial statement for 2021/2022 but failed to submit all required documents by the extended deadline of May 10, 2024, despite multiple reminders.

– Democratic Party of Namibia (DPN): Persistently failed to respond to correspondence and comply with the Act’s requirements.

– Namibia Economic Freedom Fighters (NEFF): Submitted late financial statements for 2020/2021 and 2021/2022 but did not provide the 2022/2023 financial statements and required newspaper publications by the deadline.

Section 158 mandates that all political parties represented in Parliament must submit their audited financial statements within three months after the end of their financial year. The Commission reminded these parties to submit their 2023/2024 financial year statements by June 30, 2024. This deadline, however, does not pertain to records due by May 10, 2024.

The Commission remains committed to upholding democratic principles, transparency, and fairness. It urges all political parties to adhere to the rules governing their participation in the democratic process to maintain the integrity of the electoral system. The Commission will continue to assist political parties in understanding and meeting registration requirements.