Thursday, January 20, 2022

A Candidate Challenging The Decision Of An Electoral Authority Needs Substantial Justice

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There is always the possibility of an electoral authority erring. In that regard it is important that a candidate does not suffer injury due to the error of an electoral authority.

The right to elect or be elected is protected by section 26 of the Constitution and it is the duty of every public authority, including an electoral authority, to safeguard this right whenever any citizen appears before it. Whenever an authority errs and an arbitrator gives directives or orders it is the duty of that authority to redouble its effort to safeguard the associated rights and avoid relying on technicalities.

The office of president is the highest public office that any citizen can hold and safeguarding the right of a citizen to hold that position is of utmost importance. If the candidate is permitted to contest a presidential election a couple of days before the date set for the election, he or she will be doing so at a great disadvantage because he/she would have only two days to campaign. If on the other hand this candidate is permitted to contest after the presidential election has already been conducted, such decision can only set the record straight but can be of no use to the candidate.

For justice to be substantial there must be proper safeguard of rights. In an election it means the right must be safeguarded at an early stage, within a matter of days after nomination. Without early closure justice delivered will become irrelevant, there will be no substantial justice.

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