South Africans in London urged to cast their vote

Sunday, May 19, 2024

The Electoral Commission has called on South Africans living in London to make their voices heard by casting their vote in the 2024 National and Provincial Elections.

“Today is your last chance to make your voice heard in the #SAelections24. Remember to bring your ID and share a pic of your inked thumb! The voting station is open from 7am-9pm,” said the Commission in a social media post on X on Sunday.

This as the Electoral Commission announced a smooth start to special voting abroad at nine South African missions on Friday, 17 May 2024.

The Commission had designated 17 May 2024 as a special voting day at nine foreign missions as follows: Algiers, Amman, Cairo, Damascus, Jeddah, Kuwait City, Ramallah, Riyad, and Teheran.

"We are pleased that South Africans living abroad have heeded the call to vote. It is appropriate at this time to also  express gratitude to the Department of International Relations and Cooperation and the Department of Home Affairs for their ongoing support,” said Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo.

“The Commission reminds voters that the 102 missions with a work week from Monday–Friday will vote tomorrow, Saturday, 18 May, between 7am and 7pm,” it said in a statement on Friday afternoon.

Due to the large voter population, the Commission determined two days of special voting for London.

“These are Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 May 2024 from 7 am to 9pm. The additional  voting day and extended voting hours are intended to enable proper arrangements for the 24 535 voters entitled to vote at the mission.”

Mamabolo reminded voters that, by law, South Africans abroad and those voting outside of their provinces of registration, will only vote on the national compensatory ballot.

The 2024 National compensatory ballot has 52 political parties arranged in two columns. Voters are reminded to make a mark against a single party on the ballot.

Voters out-of country on special voting days must present in person at a mission at which they are registered (or where they have successfully applied for a special vote by VEC 10 notice), and will vote as follows:

  • A voter will present their South African identity document (ID) book, smartcard or temporary identity certificate to the election official (copies of identity documents and images saved on devices are not competent forms of identification for voting).
  • The left thumbnail of the voter is marked with indelible ink to indicate that they have voted.
  • The name of the voter is marked off the list of voters approved to vote at that mission to indicate that the voter has participated in the election.
  • The voter is issued with the National compensatory ballot paper.
  • The voter will mark the ballot in secret, and place and seal the ballot in an unmarked envelope which will in turn be placed in a second envelop marked with details of the voter and the mission.
  • After the voting process, cast national compensatory ballots will be transported through a secure channel back to the national office of the Electoral Commission for counting. The votes will be counted in the presence of agents representing contestants after the close of the voting stations in the country.

Meanwhile, with JUST days left to the 2024 National and Provincial Elections, President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on voters to exercise their right to vote.

“Your vote is important. Your vote counts,” he said in a message to the nation.