IEC Results Operations Centre in Pretoria is a hive of activity ballots were being counted at voting stations around South Africa. Picture: African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - The Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) on Thursday confirmed it would conduct an audit into the votes and results to ascertain if there were any instances of double voting. 

This comes as numerous reports emerged on Wednesday night of voters being able to vote more than once after they were successfully able to remove the indelible ink. 

The KZN IEC earlier confirmed that 20 people were arrested in connection with this, 17 in Dannhauser and two in Port Shepstone and one in Hluhluwe for allegedly trying but failing to vote for a second time

The IEC Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo at a media briefing confirmed that the commission would conduct an audit of results and votes cast in a sample of voting stations to ascertain if double voting occurred.

"The audit will cover a statistically representative sample of voting stations as well as all voting stations where complaints or allegations of double voting have been received. 

"The final number and selection of the sample will be determined in conjunction with expert statisticians." 

Mamabolo said the audit will involve the capturing of information showing the ID numbers of voters who cast votes at each voting station from the “zip-zip” scanners and completed VEC 4 forms.

This data will then be cross-referenced and compared to identify any instances of multiple voting to help establish scientifically whether such instances were isolated or systemic and what the material impact is, if any, to the results.

Mamabolo also confirmed that an investigation had been ordered into the "effectiveness of the indelible ink marker pens supplied for the elections". 

"The investigation will be done in conjunction with the CSIR and with the full cooperation and support of the supplier.

"Approximately 200 000 pens were procured through the normal open tender process according to specifications set by the Electoral Commission. In an attempt to increase the effectiveness of the pens, the Electoral Commission had raised the 
percentage of silver nitrate from 15 percent used in previous elections to 20%."

Mamabolo confirmed that over 40% of the counting had been concluded and that before the end of the day 90% was expected to be completed.