The Independent Electoral Commission is ready to conduct a free and fair poll on Wednesday despite a number of violent incidents and security breaches in several areas, according to the Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo.
There are 26.75-million registered voters, the highest number since democracy began in South Africa.
At least 1.3-million new voters joined the roll in 2019, with Gauteng and KZN topping the list for provinces with the most voters.
“The Electoral Commission calls on every registered voter to have their say by casting their votes tomorrow in South Africa’s sixth national and provincial elections,” said Mamabolo on Tuesday.
“The country’s 22,924 voting stations are all poised and ready to open at 7am tomorrow to welcome voters. They will remain open until 9pm when counting is scheduled to begin. However, voting will continue after 9pm where voters are waiting in the queue.”
Mamabolo said the Electoral Commission was encouraged to note a significant decline in community protests this week.
“In those instances where protest action did continue the South African Police Service were very quick to intervene to restore calm. A minimum of two police officers will be deployed to each voting station and the SAPS will remain on high alert in high risk areas to ensure no disruptions to the elections. Citizens are reminded that any disruptions to elections constitute a criminal offence,” said Mamabolo.
Mamabolo called on “every South African citizen to celebrate our 25th anniversary of democracy by ensuring tomorrow’s elections take place in the spirit of 1994. Let voting continue peacefully, calmly and without disruption and let us once again show the world that South Africa remains a shining light of democracy in action.”
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