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Charleshill Sub-district truck swung open October 31

The day-long wait for the opening of the infamous Charleshill Sub-district Council truck reached its climax last Thursday afternoon with scores of Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) members jostling to get a glimpse of the contents when the vehicle’s doors finally swung open under the watch of Deputy Registrar and Master of the High Court Mr Mompati Taolo.

 The long wait was a result of a court order issued by Gaborone High Court’s Justice Chris Gabanagae on the night of October 30 following an election petition by former Ghanzi North MP and UDC candidate for the constituency in last month’s general elections Mr Noah Salakae.

Justice Gabanagae had ordered that the truck, allegedly ferrying election material from Ghanzi to Gaborone, be parked at the High Court under police guard and that its contents be secured and kept in safe custody pending the resolution of the petition.

 The court order was executed in the afternoon with the exercise running well into the night, finally coming to an end at 11 pm.

 After the sealing of the ballot boxes and the recording of all the material found in the truck, Mr Salakae said he was happy that the court order had been complied with. Saying he would meet with his lawyer to decide on the way forward, Mr Salakae indicated that some tallying sheets and a voters’ roll were missing from the material retrieved from the truck.

The case resumes November 12. For his part, the Deputy Registrar and Master of the High Court said the exercise that had been undertaken was provided for in the law.

 Mr Taolo explained that in the case at hand, one contestant in the constituency had registered a petition, hence it had become necessary that the evidence, in the form of election materials, be preserved.

Explaining the process of safekeeping elections materials after polls, Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) elections affairs manager Mr Dintle Rapoo stated that after the announcement of results, the returning officer was compelled by Section 79 of the Electoral Act to submit the election materials to the Registrar and Master of the High Court for safe-keeping for a period of six months.

He said the safe-keeping of the materials was done in case a petition was registered.

Mr Rapoo added that at the lapse of the six-month period, the law provided for the disposal of the materials. ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Keonee Kealeboga

Location : GABORONE

Event : COURT

Date : Nov 03 Sun,2019

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