With the countdown on to the end of the Electoral Commission’s (IEC) final voter registration drive in full swing, the Commission has called on all eligible voters to take advantage of the remaining hours to register and update their address details.
The Commission is currently carrying out the last day of voter registration weekend which allows citizens to register and update their address details so that they are able to participate in the upcoming national and provincial elections.
Voting stations across the country opened their doors at 8am and will continue to facilitate registration for voters until 5pm.
Following today’s 5pm deadline, voters will only be able to register at their local IEC office during working hours – and only for a brief period until the elections are proclaimed.
Once proclaimed, the voters’ roll for the 2019 national and provincial elections is closed.
In its statement issued shortly after midday on Sunday, the Commission stated that almost all voting stations across the country were reported open and operational at 11am today.
“In all but a handful of incidents which had affected registration operations yesterday morning were resolved and stations either opened during the course of the day or this morning.”
In addition, in the few areas where community protests were still preventing voting stations from opening this morning, electoral staff supported by the South African Police Service (SAPS) personnel were liaising with community leaders to ensure stations would open as soon as possible.
The Commission thanked community leaders, various local government representatives, traditional leaders and other stakeholders for their support in ensuring voter registration activities could continue unimpeded on Sunday.
The IEC also expressed its appreciation to the security agencies including the SAPS and various metropolitan police departments for their assistance in ensuring the safety of voters and electoral staff over the weekend.
At a media briefing on Saturday, the Commission said some of the challenges experienced by registration officials included dealing with inclement weather conditions in a number of provinces which had affected access to voting stations especially due to flooding or impassable roads.
It said that voting stations located in tents were affected by strong winds and heavy rains in the eastern Free State, parts of Gauteng, the coastal regions of KwaZulu-Natal and parts of Limpopo.
Earlier in the week, the South African Weather Service urged those who will register to vote for the upcoming elections this weekend to practice caution as stormy weather can be expected in five of the country’s provinces.
The affected provinces were the north-eastern Free State, western KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, Mpumalanga and Limpopo,” said the weather service. – SAnews.gov.za