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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Should prisoners have a right to vote?
Author:Mbodla, NtusiISNI
Periodical:Journal of African Law
Geographic term:South Africa
election law
External link:http://ejournals.ebsco.com/direct.asp?ArticleID=WLWHRW1GXP3TTW2FF3QD
Abstract:This article examines whether prisoners in South Africa should have a right to vote in general elections in the light of the recent decision of the Constitutional Court in 'August and another v. Electoral Commission and others'. It argues that inmates of South African prisons may be divided into three categories: arrestees, detainees and prisoners. The issue of voting rights is then considered in relation to the last two categories, the first being regarded as too nebulous to warrant provision of the means to exercise these rights. Detainees are dealt with on the basis that they are, theoretically, free persons and thus cannot be legitimately disenfranchised. The more complex issue of prisoners' voting rights is examined by looking at the nature of human and democratic rights as well as the extent to which imprisonment is intended to deprive a person of these rights. No strict conclusion can be drawn from this discussion except to reject a system whereby disenfranchisement occurs as a circumstantial consequence of imprisonment. Notes, ref., sum. (p. II).