Cape Town - The Independent Electoral Commission in the Western Cape is pleased with the outcomes of the voter registration weekend, despite being barred from doing its job at two voting stations in Philippi and Marikana.
Western Cape provincial electoral officer Michael Hendrickse said that as of yesterday morning, 124 000 people turned out to register across the province’s voting stations. He said everything went well starting on Saturday and that they didn’t experience any major incidents.
“We started off well, and I can report that everything went according to plan, despite experiencing a challenge in Marikana where we couldn’t open in two stations because of a service delivery protest. However, we are pleased with how things went,” said Hendrickse.
He said that on Tuesday they would be able to give a full report on the exact numbers of people who turned out to register.
The Department of Home Affairs said that it had welcomed nearly 12 000 people in its 268 offices and 103 mobile units that offered services on the first of the two-day service delivery blitz during the Voter Registration Weekend.
Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Njabulo Nzuza, said they were pleased by the turnout of people on Saturday.
“Just under half of these people were first-time applicants who came to either collect or apply for their IDs. This means that they are ready to play their part in strengthening our democracy by registering to vote,” said Nzuza.
He said the department would continue to encourage the 135 000 first-time applicants who haven’t collected their IDs to return to collect them.
“The department has dedicated collection service counters and introduced the Branch Appointment Booking System (Babs) to make it convenient for people to collect their IDs,” said Deputy Minister Nzuza.
Home Affairs offices are offering ID collections, ID applications, issuance of temporary identification certificates, rectifications, and clearing of referrals from the Independent Electoral Commission. People who came to collect their passports were also assisted.
The department said more than 3 350 people visited offices in KwaZulu-Natal. Another 1 950 people went to offices in the Western Cape. Gauteng assisted 1 704 people.
More than 660 people applied for and received their temporary identification certificates on the spot.
Most of them were in Gauteng, followed by KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape.