South Africa

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Question Value
1. Is there a ban on donations from foreign interests to political parties?
  • CodeNo
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2. Is there a ban on donations from foreign interests to candidates?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment
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3. Is there a ban on corporate donations to political parties?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment
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4. Is there a ban on corporate donations to candidates?
  • CodeNo
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5. Is there a ban on donations from Trade Unions to political parties?
  • CodeNo
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6. Is there a ban on donations from Trade Unions to candidates?
  • CodeNo
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7. Is there a ban on anonymous donations to political parties?
  • CodeNo
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8. Is there a ban on anonymous donations to candidates?
  • CodeNo
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9. Is there a ban on donations from corporations with government contracts to political parties?
  • CodeNo
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10. Is there a ban on donations from corporations with government contracts to candidates?
  • CodeNo
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11. Is there a ban on donations from corporations with partial government ownership to political parties?
  • CodeNo
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12. Is there a ban on donations from corporations with partial government ownership to candidates?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment
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13. Is there a ban on the use of state resources in favour or against a political party or candidate?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment
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14. Is there a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a political party during a non-election specific period?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment
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15. If there is a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a political party during a non-election specific period, what is the limit?
  • CodeNot applicable
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16. Is there a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a political party during an election?
  • CodeNo
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17. If there is a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a political party during an election, what is the limit?
  • CodeNot applicable
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18. Is there a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a candidate?
  • CodeNo
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19. If there is a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a candidate, what is the limit?
  • CodeNot applicable
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20. Is there a limit on the amount a candidate can contribute to their own election campaign?
  • CodeNo
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21. Is there a limit on in-kind donations to political parties?
  • CodeNo
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22. Is there a limit on in-kind donations to candidates?
  • CodeNo
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23. Is there a ban on political parties engaging in commercial activities?
  • CodeYes
  • Comment

    Explicitly banned. However, according to Section 5 of the Public Funding of Represented Political Parties Act 103 of 1997 (hereandafter as the Funding Act), the provision relates only to moneys allocated to a political party from the Fund, which may not be used directly or indirectly for the purpose of establishing any business or acquiring or maintaining any right or financial interest whatsoever in any business, or in any immovable property, except where the right or interest in the immovable property is to be used by the party solely for ordinary party-political purposes.

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24. Is there a ban on political parties taking loans in relation to election campaigns?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment
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25. Is there a ban on candidates taking loans in relation to election campaigns?
  • CodeNo
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26. Is there a ban on donors to political parties/candidates participating in public tender/procurement processes?
  • CodeNo data
  • Comment
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27. Are there provisions requiring donations to go through the banking system?
  • CodeYes
  • Comment

    Section 6 of the Funding Act: Every political party to which moneys are allocated from the Fund, must keep, with a bank registered in the Republic, a separate banking account into which all moneys so allocated to the party must be deposited.

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Question Value
28. Are there provisions for direct public funding to political parties?
  • CodeYes, regularly
  • Comment
  • Source

    Section 236 of the SA Constitution, and the Funding Act.

29. What are the eligibility criteria for political parties to receive public funding?
  • CodeRepresentation in elected body
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30. What is the allocation calculation for political parties to receive public funding?
  • CodeEqual | Proportional to seats received
  • Comment

    Section 5 of the Funding Act (EQUAL relates to the provision that there is a minimum of funds allocated to each party, the final amount differs in accordance to SEATS).

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31. What are the provisions on 'ear marking' direct public funding to political parties (how it should be used)?
  • Code Other
  • Comment

    Section 5 of the Funding Act: (i) The development of the political will of people; (ii) bringing the political party's influence to bear on the shaping of public opinion; (iii) inspiring and furthering political education; (iv) promoting active participation by individual citizens in political life; (v) exercising an influence on political trends; and (vi) ensuring continuous, vital links between the people and organs of state.

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32. Are there provisions for free or subsidized access to media for political parties?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment

    However, the  Party Elections Broadcasts and Political Advertisements Regulations of 2014 include provisions on allocating air-time to political parties who obtain the Broadcasting Service Licence.

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33. What criteria determine allocation for free or subsidized access to media for political parties?
  • CodeNot applicable
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34. Are there provisions for free or subsidized access to media for candidates?
  • CodeNo
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35. Are there provisions for any other form of indirect public funding?
  • CodeNo
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36. Is the provision of direct public funding to political parties tied to gender equality among candidates?
  • CodeNo
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37. Are there provisions for other financial advantages to encourage gender equality in political parties?
  • CodeNo
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Question Value
38. Is there a ban on vote buying?
  • CodeYes
  • Comment
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39. Are there limits on the amount a political party can spend?
  • CodeNo
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40. If there are limits on the amount a political party can spend, what is the limit?
  • CodeNot applicable
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41. Are there limits on the amount a candidate can spend?
  • CodeNo
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42. If there are limits on the amount a candidate can spend, what is the limit?
  • CodeNot applicable
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43. Are there limits on the amount that third parties can spend on election campaign activities?
  • CodeNo data
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44. Are there limits on traditional media advertising spending in relation to election campaigns?
  • CodeNo data
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45. Are there limits on online media advertising spending in relation to election campaigns?
  • CodeNo data
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46. Do any other restrictions on online media advertisement (beyond limits) exist?
  • CodeNo data
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Question Value
47. Do political parties have to report regularly on their finances?
  • CodeYes
  • Comment

    Section 6 of the Funding Act: Within two months after the end of a financial year for which moneys have been allocated to any political party from the Fund, that accounting officer must prepare a statement showing all amounts received by the party from the Fund during that financial year and its application of those moneys, as well as the purposes for which the various amounts have been applied[, whereafter that accounting officer must have]& b) submit that statement and those books and records of account [audited by] a public accountant and auditor registered and practising as such in terms of the Public Accountants’ and Auditors’ Act, 1991 (Act No. 80 of 1991), to be audited.

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48. Do political parties have to report on their election campaign finances?
  • CodeNo
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49. Do candidates have to report on their election campaign finances?
  • CodeNo
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50. Do third parties have to report on election campaign finances?
  • CodeNo data
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51. Is information in reports from political parties and/or candidates to be made public?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment

    Not applicable on candidates.

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52. Must reports from political parties and/or candidates reveal the identity of donors?
  • CodeNo
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53. Must reports from political parties and/or candidates include information on itemized income?
  • CodeYes
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    Section 6(3)(a) of the Funding Act: Within two months after the end of a financial year for which moneys have been allocated to any political party from the Fund, that accounting officer must-(a) prepare a statement showing all amounts received by the party from the Fund during that financial year.

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54. Must reports from political parties and/or candidates include information on itemized spending?
  • CodeNo
  • Comment

    Not applicable on candidates.

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55. Which institution(s) receives financial reports from political parties and/or candidates?
  • CodeEMB
  • Comment

    EMB = Electoral Commission.

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56. Which institution(s) is responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations?
  • CodeAuditing agency
  • Comment

    Auditor-General (Section 6(6) of the Funding Act).

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57. What power is granted to the institution(s) responsible for examining reports and/or investigating violations?
  • CodeNo data
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58. What sanctions are provided for political finance infractions?
  • CodeFines | Prison | Forfeiture | Loss of public funding
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Disclaimer: Maps presented do not imply on the part of the Institute any judgement on the legal status of any territory or the endorsement of such boundaries, nor does the placement or size of any country or territory reflect the political view of International IDEA. Maps are used in order to add visual clarity to data.