Media release

Smooth start to 2019 general elections

08 May 2019

8 May 2019

Government welcomes the smooth start to the 2019 national and provincial elections. Millions of South Africans have already cast their vote, affirming that our democracy remains strong and vibrant.
We are encouraged that apart from a few exceptions, voting stations around the country started on time, and issues are being addressed as they arise. The South African Police Service, supported by the South African National Defence Force and Metro Police Officers are deployed throughout the country. We commend them for their hard work and dedication. 
The vibrant atmosphere at voting stations around the nation is encouraging and we are confident that these elections will build on our history of holding regular, peaceful, and free and fair elections.
Government joins the IEC in encouraging South Africans to keep making their way to voting stations throughout the day and in commending voters for the dignity and patience with which they are conducting themselves.
As part of the control measures of the election process, every ballot paper has to have a validation stamp at the back. Voters are encouraged to ensure that their national and provincial ballot is stamped.
Government wishes to convey our deepest sympathy to the family and loved ones of the IEC official who passed away last night, and of the 67 year old man who died in Tshwane while making his way to a voting station. We also wish to express condolences to the IFP after one of their members passed away in a car crash in KwaZulu-Natal.
Elderly voters are encouraged to approach electoral officers at their voting stations so that they can be ushered to the front of the queue. 
To avoid medical emergencies, voters joining queues are advised to take precautions such as drinking water to remain hydrated and should take their prescription medicines.
All Home Affairs offices are open today until 9pm to assist citizens with the necessary documents for voting. The Department of Home Affairs has confirmed that the total number of temporary IDs issued between the 6th and midday today is 14 292.  Voters can call Home Affairs on 0800 6011 90 toll free for more information.
Government reiterates its call that even though voting stations are open until 9pm, voters should take advantage of this public holiday to visit voting stations earlier and throughout the day to avoid bottlenecks near closing time. South Africans who have not yet voted are encouraged to make their way to their voting stations.
Acting GCIS Director-General, Phumla Williams said, “Government encourages all South Africans, especially young and first-time voters, to exercise their democratic right to vote. We call on all South Africans to honour our history and continue to strengthen the legitimacy of our democracy.”
Phumla Williams
Cell: 083 5010 13

Issued by: Government Communications

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