The Free State chapter of the South African Local Government Association (Salga) says it is proud of the smooth running of the national and provincial polls that took place in all municipalities on Wednesday.
Salga said it worked hard to ensure that all necessities for holding hassle free elections were at hand for the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) as it conducted the general elections.
The association is part of the Provincial Elections Task Team which comprises the SA Police Services, the SA National Defence Force, as well as the Provincial Disaster Management Centre. Local and district municipalities in the province are also part of the team.
Salga Free State provincial executive officer Zanoxolo Futwa said the association had been instrumental in ensuring that water is available on Election Day and also that there were no scheduled services maintenance or interruptions.
Futwa noted the body also sourced optional services by the IEC such as a tent with power generation.
“Our participation in the task team will continue until the elections are concluded, to ensure that we assist where there are challenges. Salga has been working hard to ensure that our municipalities are ready to provide the necessary support to the IEC. This association of municipalities formed part of the Provincial Elections Task Team that prepared for the elections,” he added.
Salga, which is the umbrella body for municipalities in the country, was tasked to ensure specific municipal services were available for the election according to its constitutional and legislative mandate.
The provincial disaster management centre was also on standby with a contingency plan detailing relevant stakeholders, their roles and contact details. This was for use by district municipalities and the Mangaung Metro in case of disaster on the day.
Futwa further praised power utility Eskom for its assurance that there would be no load-shedding, maintenance and interruptions to electricity supply between May 7 and 9. This also applied to municipalities still indebted to Eskom for millions of rands in outstanding electricity consumption tariffs.
He noted Eskom had registered technicians with the IEC who would be on stand-by to handle any electricity related challenges during the elections.
“Municipal electoral officers were in constant communication with Eskom on any concerns. In the same breath, Centlec also provided a stand-by generator for the Results Operation Centre located in the Mangaung Metro Municipal area,” added Futwa.