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IEC voter registration going ahead despite threat by Motherwell residents

By Afikile Lugunya - Jan 25, 2019
IEC voter registration going ahead despite threat by Motherwell residents

Residents of Motherwell’s NU29 this week threatened to not allow Electoral Commission officers into Ward 54 for this weekend’s final voter registration over a demand for a school, but the IEC says registration is going ahead.

According to resident, Khaya Phasiya, IEC officials were not welcome in Ward 54if government does not deliver on its promise for a school.

“We have also agreed as residents that the IEC will not be welcomed on the 26 and 27 of January to register people to vote. Even today we, closed the community hall because we want the department of education to see that we are serious and we mean business," he described.

"We are not going to vote in this Ward if there are no temporary schools - and my understanding is that Ward 54 has the most voters in Nelson Mandela Bay.”

The Eastern Cape Department of Education said it is not to blame for the delay in the construction of the school - instead shifting blame to a service provider.

IEC has contigencies for situations like that

However, IEC regional supervisor, Crosby Bacela, told RNEWS that over 30 members of South African Police Service (SAPS) have been trained register voters should IEC members experience difficulties in their voting stations as threatened by the Motherwell residents.

"The IEC is an independent organisation that is supposed to do its job when it needs to - and it will do it this weekend. We are not saying that what people need and want is not important, but we are very sure that there are organisations that deal with such situations and I don’t think that IEC will be affected." 

He said that voting stations are ready for voting registration that will take place on Saturday and Sunday.

“We have 255 voting stations in these 60 wards and the registration stations will be operating from 8pm to 5pm.

“We are asking the voters to come to register because this is the last bid of registration. Our fear is that people like to wait until there is no chance for them to register to vote, but when the voting date comes then their names are not on the list,” Bacela added.

How to register for the 2019 National and Provincial elections

To clarify a few things for those, who get confused by what they must bring to registration he reassured them that they do not need to bring their proof of addresses for confirmations.

However, they must bring their original green ID documents or the latest smart ID card, or a temporal identification that has the owner’s face.

'It's all systems go'

“It’s all systems go and we are ready to start the voting registration process. This time around we have spoken to service providers to ensure that what happened in 2016 of seeing tents flying because of wind and rainfall doesn’t happen this year," Bacela added.

“We asked them to give us stronger tents."

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