BREAKING NEWS: Election challenge failsBy: WERNER MENGES
OPPOSITION parties' attempt to have Namibia's 2009 National Assembly election declared invalid, or to get a recount of votes cast in the election, has ended in a final failure in the Supreme Court.
BREAIn a unanimous judgement, five judges of the Supreme Court today dismissed eight opposition parties' appeal against a High Court judgement in which their election challenge had been dismissed in February last year.
The Supreme Court's judgement was announced by Chief Justice Peter Shivute this morning (October 25).
The Supreme Court found that, while it had been shown that some administrative mistakes had been made by presiding officers at some polling stations used in the election, the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) has shown on a balance of probabilities that the result of the election was not affected by such mistakes.
As a result, the appeal of the eight opposition parties that tried to have the High Court's decision overturned was dismissed, and the parties were ordered to pay the costs of the ruling Swapo Party, which had been declared the winner of the election and was one of the respondents sued by the opposition parties.
In a sign of the court's displeasure with the way the ECN ran the election, the electoral body did not win a costs order that would have enabled it to recover its legal costs from the eight opposition parties.
Read the full report in The Namibian tomorrow.