One of eThekwini voting stations closed amid fraud allegations
Durban - A voting station in eThekwini Municipality has been forced to stop registering voters and to close following allegations of voter fraud.
Voters there could be forced to re-register as opposition parties feel the voters roll at the station is tainted.
The parties have accused the ANC of trying to “pack” the Mount Royal voting station, north of Durban, with individuals who do not live in that ward in an effort to rig a by-election. The area falls under ward 110 which includes Sunningdale, Mount Moriah, Glen Anil and Glen Hills. The ward was held by the DA but the councillor resigned last year.
The by-election is expected to take place next month.
A man who opposition parties claim was an ANC member was caught with 30 ID books of different individuals that he wanted to register at the station on Sunday.
EFF KZN leader Vusi Khoza posted a video on his Twitter timeline of a confrontation between the parties and the man who can been seen carrying a stack of IDs.
The man implies he is assisting “ill comrades” by coming to register for them.
In the video, a woman wearing an ANC flag seems to join the fight on behalf of the man, lending credence to the allegation that the man, who is not wearing any party regalia, is an ANC member.
The IFP district chair in eThekwini, Bonga Msomi, said they were visiting different voting districts on Sunday when they received a call from one of their party agents at the station.
“We rushed to the station and we were followed by the EFF. When we got there we learned that an ANC member had arrived at the voting station with 30 different IDs of people they wanted to register.
Msomi said: “He (the man) said the IDs were for the elderly and disabled people that needed to be registered. We managed to look at these IDs and we discovered that some of the people whose IDs were being used are known to our party and they do not live in the area.
“When we requested the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) form to register a complaint of irregularities at the station, we were told that the form was not available. The area manager had to be called to the station to address the matter and he agreed that it was improper for the form not to be there.
“We decided that, in light of these issues, the voting station should be closed,” he said.
Khoza, who was also present at the scene, said they would approach the IEC to declare the registration that took place at the voting station null and void and for the by-elections to be postponed.
“If that does not happen, we will consider our legal options. What happened there was voter fraud. It confirmed what we have already suspected that the ANC does not win free and fair. If they could do something like this so brazenly, when we are there as leaders watching, imagine what they get away with in rural areas where no one is looking,” he said.
Attempts to get comment from the ANC yesterday were unsuccessful.
IEC provincial commissioner Mawethu Mosery said they have been made aware of the incident.
“We have seen the video sent to us by the EFF. Our officials did their jobs, they prevented the person from being able to register the IDs or even check the registration of these individuals.
“The matter that remains is of the person that has the IDs. That is beyond the scope of the commission and would be a matter of the SAPS,” Mosery said.
The parties claimed the matter had been reported to the police and in the video they are heard calling for police standing nearby to intervene.
Mosery, who is currently working out of the province, directed The Mercury to obtain further comment from the provincial managers, who were not available at the time.