When the law is live

The case of the national elections has been going on since last year. Some opposition parties are disputing the outcome of the elections and have taken legal action against the Election Commission. This has led to some elected members boycotting the cabinet which resulted in the cabinet had to start without the participation of all the parties. Whereas I think that SWAPO has won the elections I also agree that parties should practice their democratic right to take the legal route. As this case unraveled, Namibia took a big first step in terms of transparency.
During the trial, the media was not only allowed to attend the sessions but NBC, the national broadcaster, was allowed to bring the proceedings live to all Namibians. For the first time we could follow a legal process on our television at home. This step was welcomed by Namibians because we could see what was transpiring in real-time. This does not mean that we could understand the process! I, for one, started watching it only on the second day and felt like I was flung deep in a sea of legal jargon. Thanks to a lawyer friend I received a brief summary of what the jargon technical war was about;
• The case was concerned with the fact that the case was submitted to the clerk later than it was required
• The lawyer for the electoral commission argued that the documents could not be considered and therefore there is no case
• The lawyer for the opposition parties argued that the documents were accepted and therefore the case is valid
• The judges are considering their verdict
• So, if the judges make a decision in favour of the opposition, it could mean a new election
Now we are all just waiting for the announcement of the judgment, which probably won’t enjoy a prime-time TV spot (we all agree that the World Cup will be the only spectacle during this month). But back to the point; its great that the media has the freedom to televise court cases which carry national significance.

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