SA ready for 2016 Local Elections

Tuesday, August 2, 2016
By: 
More Matshediso

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma says South Africa is ready for the 2016 Local Government Elections and he is confident that the country will do very well.

The President said this on Tuesday after his walkabout at the National Results Operation Centre (ROC) in Pretoria, ahead of Election Day tomorrow.

President Zuma, who visited the ROC as Head of State, on behalf of government, said he appreciated the readiness of the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) to conduct elections to the end.

“I am sure the country is ready to do their best tomorrow. All that is left is for the voters to vote properly. I am looking forward to have less spoiled papers… I am very happy.

“These elections are quite elaborate for the fact that they are municipal elections, taking place in every corner of the country.

With over 200 political parties and over 61 000 candidates participating in the country’s fifth Municipal Elections, over 26.3 million registered South Africans will put their crosses next to the name of the individuals who will serve their communities with honesty, integrity and commitment to serve.

“I have been taken through the ROC by the commission. I have been shown very advanced infrastructure here,” President Zuma said.

The President said he was also shown measures that the commission has in place to ensure that elections are transparent.

“I think all the stakeholders are here, they have facilities… very little could go wrong. From the briefing I could say everything will go fine.”

He said the process is so transparent that everyone will see the results as it comes in.

The ROC is a key aspect of the integrity of the electoral process and continues to be the envy and aspiration of many other countries.

They bring together all key stakeholders – the Electoral Commission, the political parties, observers and the media – in one venue.

This has considerable benefits for the entire process. Firstly it provides for a highly transparent results process – all the stakeholders in this room receive the results at the same time.

As results slips are captured in the municipal electoral offices (MEOs) across the country, the data is transferred to the Electoral Commission’s computer systems and stored in a database.

State-of-the-art IT and GIS applications will rapidly make data available for communication to political parties, the media and the Electoral Commission staff within the venue, and to the nine Provincial ROCs.

In addition, data in various formats will be displayed on the projection screens.

President Zuma said the manner in which South Africa conducts elections is satisfying, adding that the country’s democracy is maturing.

President Zuma has urged all registered voters, especially the youth, to go out and cast their ballots across the 22 612 voting stations. - SAnews.gov.za