My Vote Counts welcomes the Constitutional Court judgement handed down on 20 September 2022 deeming the Executive Ethics Code unconstitutional and invalid as it falls short of the standards of transparency and openness. In its current form, the Code does not require members of the executive to disclose: “donations made to campaigns for their election to positions within political parties”. This ruling applies to members of the executive, including the president, deputy president, Cabinet ministers, deputy ministers, members of Parliament (including provincial legislatures) and premiers.
This case was brought forward by the investigative journalism organisation, amaBhungane.

This judgement furthers the goal of a more accountable politics which we have already begun to see with the Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Act and the Political Party Funding Act which came after MVC’s own campaigning around party funding transparency. Political parties and politicians must be accountable to the voter and this judgement reinforces the need for access to political funding information which is necessary to make an informed vote.

MVC’s 2018 Constitutional Court victory was cited as setting the precedent for political funding transparency. That judgement found that the Promotion of Access to Information Act was unconstitutional as it did not allow for the disclosure of private funding information for political parties and independent candidates. This latest judgement follows this precedent and shows a renewed commitment to funding transparency to deal with the possible toxic relationship between money and politics.

Importantly, the Court has ordered that the Executive Ethics Code be amended within 12 months. In addition, this ruling will not be applied retrospectively meaning that only once the new Executive Ethics Code has been signed into law, will the changes be enforced.