South Africa’s IEC Assures Voters Of Peaceful, Safe Electoral Process

In the midst of South Africa’s election day events, various myths and uncertainties have surfaced online, prompting voter concern. Issues cited include doubts over the sanctity of the voting process, particularly the double envelope system utilized for special votes, which some feared could compromise ballot secrecy.

However, the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) has dispelled these concerns, clarifying that the practice is established and that measures are in place to ensure voter confidentiality is strictly upheld.

Anxieties pertaining to election-related violence, especially in KwaZulu-Natal, were heightened after internal communications from FirstRand and Fidelity suggested that risks were present. Nonetheless, the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) considered the likelihood of extensive violence to be minimal, due primarily to enhanced coordination between police forces and private security in the wake of the unrest in 2021.

Adding to voter skepticism were rumors of ballots being pre-ticked and disappearing ink pens being provided at polling stations.

The IEC addressed these issues directly, affirming the integrity of the voting materials and confirming that all pens given to voters contained permanent ink.

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While certain disruptions have occurred, including protests and taxi strikes affecting some polling stations, the IEC conveyed that most voting locations operated smoothly. Efforts are ongoing by the commission to ensure all voters impacted by these events are afforded a safe opportunity to participate in the electoral process.

SOURCE: DAILY MAVERICK

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