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By Vhahangwele Nemakonde

Digital Deputy News Editor


IEC statistics: Elderly voters outnumber teenagers in South Africa

The country hosts 1,792 registered political parties vying for the vote of the 27 million South Africans.


As South Africa prepares for its upcoming elections, attention has now turned to voter registration statistics, as the country struggles with youth voter apathy.

Last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the 2024 general elections will be held on 29 May 2024 – a welcomed announced by ordinary South Africans and political parties.

ALSO READ: Voters are apathetic and depleted

Ramaphosa and the country’s premiers proclaimed the 2024 national and provincial elections voting day, 29 May 2024, on Friday.

Voter registration for an election closes with proclamation of the election date. Registration and re-registration for the 2024 national and provincial elections closed at midnight on 23 February 2024.

According to data from the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC), a total of 27 753 059 South Africans have registered to vote, with a gender distribution of 44.76% men and 55.24% women.

The country hosts 1,792 registered political parties vying for the vote of the 27 million South Africans.

Gauteng is the country’s most significant voting province, with 6.5 million registered voters, closely followed by KwaZulu-Natal with 5.7 million.

ALSO READ: South Africa’s future is in the voters’ hands

The Eastern Cape follows with 3.4 million voters, Western Cape with 3.3 million, Limpopo with 2.7 million, Mpumalanga with 2 million, North West with 1.7 million, Free State with 1.4 million and Northern Cape with 657,000.

Registered voters by age group

Age group Registered voters
18 -19583 343
20-294 474 168
30-396 825 028
40-495 966 661
50-594 537 003
60-693 099 340
70-791 514 314
80 plus753 202
Source: IEC

The IEC data shows that more South Africans aged 70 and above still go to the polls than the 18 to 19 age group. This as the 30 to 39 age group leads the pack with almost 8 million voters.

“The 2024 general elections are historic in that they mark the 30th year of electoral democracy. We do not wish for any eligible citizen to miss out on this historic democratic process,” said IEC chief electoral officer Sy Mamabolo.

ALSO READ: Voters ‘dissatisfied’ with quality of democracy in SA

“The Electoral Commission once again reminds eligible voters of the general rule in elections. That is, a person must register where they live, and vote at the voting station where they are registered. The only exception to the rule is that a voter may vote outside of the voting district of registration after notifying the Electoral Commission.”

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