Maletzky and others to appeal in Supreme Court

WINDHOEK; The applicants of the failed bid to stop the elections on Friday, will seek solace from the Supreme Court of Namibia on Wednesday.

The African Labour and Human Rights Centre as well as its director August Maletzky plus the Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) party, and the Workers’ Revolutionary Party applied for the postponement of the 2014 Presidential and National Assembly elections, claiming the use of electronic voting machines in the elections is invalid, because of a lack of a paper trail.

High Court Judge Kobus Muller dismissed this application with costs on Wednesday, saying it was not his jurisdiction to rule on the matter but that of the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN). He also said the applicants had ample time to bring the matter before court, but failed to do so.

Maletzky told the media after the dismissal of their urgent application that he actually expected the judgement – ‘not because it is based on facts and legal principles but because it is another miscarriage of justice that we are used to”.

“The lady called madam justice has been subjected to many miscarriages since independence. We don’t have an independent judiciary. This cast a serious reflection on the integrity on the justice delivery system,” he said.

Maletzky added that this is the beginning of litigation and not the end.

“This is no hollow talk. If we file the rule of law and file the notice of appeal, the operation of law dictates the elections have to automatically be suspended,” he stated.

Maletzky, however, differed with the judge on the jurisdiction issue, saying that he approached the High Court and not the Electoral Commission because the High Court has more comprehensive jurisdiction than the ECN.

“We are confident that the Supreme Court will give a judgement in stark contrast to that judgement of the High Court,” he said.

Maletzky added that the case of the applicants is well-founded and not based on speculation that the paper trail is not on the EVMs.

“The software running these electronic voter machines has not been disclosed to all the relevant stakeholders in this election, it is a matter of fact,” he said.

RDP president Hidipo Hamutenya was quoted in a media statement issued on Wednesday saying it is unfortunate that the High Court could not see the importance of the matters raised by Maletzky.

“Despite the outcome we will still participate in the upcoming elections. Unfortunately, the results cannot and will not be able to be verified by the voters and the parties, therefore, the credibility of this election will be undermined for those reasons,” he said.

Hamutenya added that the recent judgement is subject to appeal in the Supreme Court, and the ECN should in terms of the law suspend the elections until after the Supreme Court pronounces itself thereon.

SOURCE: NAMPA