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Elections 2024: How the voting process works

Due to an increase in the number of new voters, we have prepared a guide on how to vote, which also explains the voting process.

MORE than 27 million people are eligible to vote in the upcoming National and Provincial Elections on May 29 as per the Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC). 

The IEC stated that there has been an increase of 9.6 million voters since the voters’ roll was compiled for the first time ahead of the 1999 National and Provincial Elections. 

Also read: Elections 2024: Young voter says new-gen voters have the power to mould South Africa’s future

The commission said the highlight of the certified roll is the increase in the rate of representation by persons in the age cohort of 18–39 years. 

“This age band accounts for 42% (or 11.7 million) voters on the voters’ roll,” said the IEC.

Are you a first-time voter? Here is how the process goes as per the IEC: 

  • On election day, go to the voting station where you’re registered. During national and provincial elections, you can vote at any station countrywide, but if you vote at a station outside the province in which you’re registered, you can only vote in the national election.
  • Show your green, bar-coded, South African ID book/card or a temporary identification certificate to the voting officer.
  • The voting officer checks that your name appears on the voters’ roll. If you are not on the voters’ roll but have proof that you have registered, eg, a registration sticker, the presiding officer must validate your proof of registration. If he/she is satisfied with the proof, you must complete a VEC4 form (national elections) or MEC7 form (municipal elections) and will then be allowed to continue as an ordinary voter.

Also read: Elections 2024: IEC says its all systems go

  • Once the voting officer is satisfied that you have the correct ID, are a registered voter and have not already voted, your name is marked off the roll, your ID is stamped on the second page and your thumbnail is inked.
  • The voting officer stamps the back of the correct number of official ballot papers (one per election) and gives them to you.
  • Take your ballot paper/s to an empty ballot booth, mark the ballot paper/s, fold them so that your choice isn’t visible and place the ballot papers in the ballot box.

Note: You can only vote once in each election.

Voting stations are open on May 29 from 07:00 to 21:00. 

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