Hundreds of Pretoria East voters queue from 6am

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Pretoria - Hundreds of excited voters queued from 6am in the morning at the Skuilkrans Voting Station in Murrayfield, Pretoria East, anxiously waiting to cast their votes.

Speaking to BuaNews, Presiding Electoral Officer Stephanie Botes said that 4 726 voters were expected to cast their votes today.

In terms of security, she said everything was in order and they expect the voting processes to go on smoothly.

An energised Michele Fourie, 47, from Murrayfield said she was looking forward to casting her vote and contributing to the transformation process.

Ms Fourie told BuaNews that South Africa needed a change and only the public vote could change the country for the better.

Anxiously waiting in the long line, Wesley Williams, 31, said he expects to see change in the economic development of the country.

"By voting today I want to be part of the change that will empower the people of South Africa not the individuals," said Mr Williams.

When BuaNews arrived in the early hours of the morning in Mamelodi East's FF Ribeiro Primary School, more than 700 people were queued outside voting stations.

There was also a strong police presence at the station with more than 20 fully armed police officials patrolling the vicinity to ensure the security of voters.

Another enthusiastic voter, Johannes Mabelane, 61, said he woke at 3am and was the fifth person in the line, adding that he has been waiting a long time for this big day.

"Today I will exercise my right by voting for the party which I believe will empower our lives, particularly the lives of the poor and also eradicate poverty in rural areas," he said.

Maphala Maripane, Presiding Electoral Officer at the Mamelodi primary school said more than 2 600 voters were expected to appear later today, with the youth dominating the list.

Meanwhile, thousands of voters arrived in Mamelodi East High School to cast their votes for South Africa's fourth democratic elections.

After casting his vote, Field Madau, 30, said it was important for the youth to participate in the voting process, adding that he expected a dramatic change in the service delivery and the education programmes.

His wife, Dihan Mudau told BuaNews that her vote was important in the development of the country's democracy.

She believes that the new administration will empower women and provide more programmes for aimed at protecting women against violence.