Picture: Sibonelo Ngcobo/AfricanNewsAgency (ANA)

Johannesburg - As vote counting continues in South Africa’s economic hub, the country is much closer to the finalisation of the 2019 general elections.

Vote counting in all 8 provinces have been declared. In Gauteng 98.3% of votes have been counted. 

It remains unclear when it will be finalised. Historically, the IEC holds an official results announcement ceremony on a Saturday. It was widely reported that the ceremony would take place on Saturday. 

On Friday night, IEC commissioners said that the Statistician General had identified 1020 voting stations that will form part of a sample which will be used to investigate allegations of voter fraud. 

The announcement comes a day after the commission confirmed it would carry out an audit into the votes and results to ascertain if there were any instances of double voting. 

This year's general elections were marred by allegations of voters being able to cast their vote multiple times after removing the indelible ink. At least 22 people have since been arrested in connection with this. 

All political parties will be given access to the list of stations that will be sampled.

"This list will be made available to political parties. The Electoral Commission would like to express its gratitude to the Statistician-General for the assistance which it has agreed rapidly and without hesitation to provide," the commission said. 

It was also confirmed at the briefing that 22 people had been arrested in connection with double voting, with deputy national police commissioner General Sehlahle Masemola reiterating that none of those arrested had successfully managed to vote again but were caught in the attempting to vote again. The investigation is still ongoing.

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