National 2.8.2016 01:34 pm

ANC mayor blunders with ballot paper selfie

City of uMhlathuze mayoral candidate for the ANC, Mduduzi Mhlongo. PHOTO: Kyle Cowan

City of uMhlathuze mayoral candidate for the ANC, Mduduzi Mhlongo. PHOTO: Kyle Cowan

According to reports, the mayor’s photo was removed only minutes after it was posted online.

City of uMhlathuze Mayor Mduduzi Mhlongo could find himself in hot water after a photo of him holding his marked ballot paper was posted online on Monday, Zululand Observer reports.

Posting a photo on social media of yourself holding your marked ballot paper is illegal and the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) will be taking no prisoners.

This also includes posting a photo of just your marked ballot paper.

According to reports, they mayor’s photo was removed within minutes.

Mhlongo this morning told the Zululand Observer he had not posted the photo himself and directed further queries to the ANC in the region, who issued a statement shortly after media queries.

“The ANC in the Musa Dladla Region has since apologised unreservedly to the IEC for the honest error,” read the statement. “We also urge the IEC to continue educating voters on its new rules.”

The statement continued, saying as the ANC’s mayoral candidate for the City of uMhlathuze, Mhlongo’s vote was no secret.

uThungulu Regional Supervisor Thule Dlamini this morning said that no official complaint against Mhlongo had been received by her office.

While no official guidelines exist for the possible penalties for posting a marked ballot online, media reports posted in the past say offenders could be liable to pay a fine or be given a prison sentence not exceeding one year.

Voters are reminded they may take photos of themselves at a voting station or of their marked thumb, but not while inside the voting booth.

– Caxton News Service

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