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Polokwane - The IEC has ordered a vote recount on Friday at a Musina polling station in Limpopo after results showed that the EFF and the DA each failed to get a single vote on the national ballot.
Oddly, the same results indicated that 151 and 83 provincial ballots from that polling station went to the two parties respectively.
This suggested that while 234 people at the polling station voted for the EFF and the DA on the provincial ballot, they all chose not to vote for either of the parties on the national ballot.
The stark difference was first noted by the DA which alleged that its party agent’s signature on both the national and provincial results slips had been forged. “When I sent him (DA party agent) the pictures of the two signatures he said ‘they look like my signature, but they are not mine’,” said DA provincial leader Jacque Smalle.
Suspecting possible vote rigging, the DA laid a formal complaint with the IEC, which then ordered a vote recount at the station.
The DA and the EFF argued that it was impossible for all their respective supporters to vote for them on the provincial ballot and shun them on the national ballot. “The two main opposition parties got 151 and 83 votes respectively in the province, then they (both) get zero (votes) nationally, it’s very suspicious,” said DA MPL Desiree van der Walt.
The station had 2 572 registered voters. According to the IEC’s results slips from the polling station, the ANC received 1239 votes on the provincial ballot and 1259 votes nationally.
IEC provincial electoral officer Nkaro Mateta has confirmed that vote recount was ordered by the commission nationally. “What is left for us as the IEC is to do the recount and then we have a case to investigate at our own time to check as who is guilty,” she said.
Mateta said at 8.00 pm on Friday that the vote recount was still underway at the Musina polling station. She said the recount had delayed the final release of the provincial elections results.
Van der Walt said the party will open criminal charges. EFF’s provincial convener Mike Mathebe said: “We feel like someone has stolen the elections and they can’t be free and fair”.