IT is all systems go in Nelson Mandela Bay for the elections, with tens of thousands of people expected to make their mark at the city’s 247 voting stations today.
This follows months of intensive campaigning by political parties and preparations by the Electoral Commission (IEC) for voting.
The voting stations and ballot papers are ready, the tents are up, police and emergency services are on standby, and even the weather is expected to play ball. – Thulani Gqirana and Rochelle de Kock
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- MAKE sure you are registered to vote before going to the voting station. If you have never registered to vote, you cannot vote;
- Take your green, bar-coded ID book with you to the voting station. If you do not have one, a temporary identity certificate will do;
- In national and provincial elections you must preferably vote at the voting station where you are registered, but in terms of Section 24 of the Electoral Act you can vote at any voting station in the country;
- If your name does not appear on the voters’ roll, hand your ID book to the presiding officer to check whether or not you are registered to vote. If you are registered, you must complete a VEC4 form to vote;
- The polling officer must stamp both ballot papers – national and provincial – on the back;
- To prevent confusion about the party you vote for, make your cross or mark carefully in the relevant box on the ballot paper;
- Most people will go to the voting stations early. To avoid long queues, try going to the voting station between 10am and noon or 1.30pm and 4pm when the majority will already have voted;
- There are rumours that the pens at the voting stations have disappearing ink. This is untrue. Nonetheless, if you are concerned about the rumours you can use your own pen;
- If you make a mistake on the ballot paper and realise it before placing it in the ballot box, you can ask the presiding officer for a clean ballot paper. Make sure the incorrect ballot paper is marked “cancelled”; and
- Once the ballot paper is inside the ballot box, it cannot be taken out. – Information supplied by the Solidarity Research Institute