WATCH: Umzinto protesters block access to voting stations

By SIHLE MAVUSO Time of article published May 8, 2019

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DURBAN - While most polling stations opened on time and polling was still going smoothly on Wednesday residents of Stickfarm in Umzinto on the KZN South Coast blocked voting stations demanding that their longstanding housing backlog issues be resolved.

According to a resident, who asked not to be named because he works for the provincial government, the residents wanted their concerns to be addressed. 

"The residents are saying there won't be voting until their issues are resolved. Even the POP (Public Order Police) that was called to quell the protest failed and IEC cars were not allowed to come close to the voting station," the source said. 

KZN Police spokesperson, Colonel Thulani Zwane, confirmed that there was some disturbance.

"We are aware that there is something happening there and we are still trying to establish what is happening," Zwane said. 

Voting at Gamalakhe Library, ANC KZN provincial executive committee member, Mzwandile Mkhwanazi, said he was happy with the voting process in his area. 

He further dismissed concerns raised by the EFF that there will be electoral fraud. He said those making the claims were hallucinating.

Residents of Mistake Farm in Umzinto blocked the road to prevent people from voting. Video: Bongani Mbatha

"Rigging the elections is easier said than done. The systems are effective and there is no room for rigging results... the elections will be free and fair," Mkhwanazi said. 

Protesters in Umzinto blocked the road to prevent people from voting. Video: Bongani Mbatha

In most voting stations visited on the South Coast, the most visible parties were the ANC and the EFF while the DA was more visible in voting stations in the suburbs. This was while most voters in long queues were middle aged woman and a few old men. 

Residents of Mistake Farm in Umzinto are unhappy about poor service delivery in the area. Video: Bongani Mbatha

Many ANC supporters clad in the party's regalia were in a buoyant mood and confident that they will retain their grip on the country with an overwhelming majority. 

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