THE ELECTORAL Commission of South Africa (IEC) has urged all South Africans to visit voting stations and register on Saturday and Sunday for the 2019 general elections.
The IEC launched a number of initiatives to encourage South Africans to register following a 2016 Constitutional Court ruling which required the IEC to update the voters’ roll with complete addresses.
“The voters’ roll is a fundamental safeguard for free and fair elections. It is an instrument for facilitating electoral participation, which is placed at the disposal of political parties for campaign purposes,” said chief electoral officer Sy Mamabolo.
“It serves a functional purpose as a planning tool for accurate provision of electoral material and the avoidance of electoral fraud.”
Despite its best efforts to collect the addresses of voters, the electoral commission does not have addresses for 2.8 million voters.
A further 3.5 million addresses are currently classified as “incomplete” or “generic”.
“We’ve been getting addresses during the by-elections, but this weekend is our biggest initiative to update the roll,” said IEC spokesperson Kate Bapela.
Bapela was uncertain how many South Africans would show up to the 22 609 voting stations across the country, but remained optimistic.
“We are praying that every South African shows up because we need those addresses. We have launched an expensive advertising campaign telling South Africans that even if they don’t have data to register online, they can do so at our voting stations.”
Voters are reminded to bring their green barcoded identification book (ID), or smart ID card or a valid temporary ID certificate.
Voters will be assisted to complete a registration form providing their home address at which they ordinarily reside. This will allow the electoral commission to place them in the correct voting district.
Proof of residence is not required.
Those who are uncertain about where to find their voting station are encouraged to call the electoral commission’s contact centre on 0800 11 8000 on Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 17:00.
You can also SMS your ID Number to 32810 (R1.00 per SMS) to obtain your registration status.