More than 24 million registered to vote

Johannesburg - Just over 24.1 million South Africans have registered to vote, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) said on Thursday ahead of the final voter registration this weekend.

With the IEC's election timetable published, political parties are preparing for a frenzied campaign. Credit: Independent Newspapers

“This is 76.7 percent of the estimated voting age population which, according to Statistics SA is 31.4 million,” spokeswoman Kate Bapela said in a statement.

“This includes just over one million new voters who were added to the voters' roll during the previous registration weekend held in November.”

The IEC had set itself a target of securing 80 percent of the voting population on its voters' roll.

“To reach this threshold, 1.1 million will be targeted in the final registration weekend.”

Bapela said 22 263 voting stations throughout the country would be open on Saturday and Sunday from 8am to 5pm for the final voter registration weekend.

“This is the last weekend during which the voters can apply to register to vote for the 2014 national and provincial elections,” she said.

In January, two voter registration weekends were held out in South Africa's 123 missions in 108 countries around the world.

Bapela said voter registration remained opened at the missions during working hours.

“For purposes of the 2014 national and provincial elections, South African citizens abroad have been encouraged to ensure that their applications are received by close of business on Friday, 7

February,” she said.

“To date we have received 3703 applications for registration from about 70 missions. We are still receiving more each day and are processing these.”

Bapela said the highest number of applications came from London, Dubai, and Cuba.

Prisoners in the country had also been urged to register to vote.

“Registration in South Africa's 235 correctional facilities began on 5 February (Wednesday),” said Bapela. - Sapa