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IEC releases provisional voters’ roll as election preparations ramp up

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By Ragheema Mclean

As the country gears up for the general elections, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has released the provisional voters’ roll for inspection. This marks a crucial step in the electoral process.

Speaking on VOC Breakfast on Tuesday, IEC provincial officer Michael Hendrickse, highlighted an increase in voter registration numbers in the Western Cape.

“At the moment, we have just over 3.3 million people who are registered to vote in the Western Cape, and this is almost more than 200 000 from where we started last year and that’s a big increase.”

He also emphasized that all registrations, including online registrations, are now closed, with no further voter registration weekends planned.

Hendrickse said that one notable trend in this election cycle is the significant increase in voter registration among the youth.

“If we look at the number of persons who are under the age of 29, we have just under a half of million who are registered to vote in that age group in the Western Cape.”

Hendrickse also provided an update on the candidate nomination process, stating that political parties and independent candidates must submit their nominations by the 8th of March.

Following this, the public will have the opportunity to review the candidate list and raise objections based on the candidates’ legal qualifications.

Voters who will not be in their voting districts on election day must apply for a special vote to cast their ballots ahead of time. Special votes and home visits will take place on the 27th and 28th of May, and the deadline for special vote applications is the 3rd of May.

As a general principle, voters must vote where they are registered but, in the event, voters intend to be in a different voting district on election day, they must notify the IEC of their absence from their voting district and of the voting station where they wish to cast their vote.

A notification portal will soon be launched for this purpose. Notifications in this regard will close on 17 May.

Meanwhile, for voters intending to vote abroad, the process differs based on registration status. Voters registered on a specific country’s segment of the voters’ roll do not need to give notice if voting at the country’s diplomatic mission.

However, those registered elsewhere, including locally registered voters intending to vote at a specific diplomatic mission abroad, must notify the chief electoral officer of their intention to vote there.

The notice to vote abroad can be submitted on the commission’s website until 22 April.

Special voting for diplomatic missions will take place on the 17th or 18th of May, with the exact date determined by the host country’s dominant religious and cultural practices.


Photo: VOCfm

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