LOOK: South Africans abroad show love for Mzansi as they cast their votes

A South African at a voting station abroad wearing the colours of the South African flag and traditional Zulu pants, umblaselo. Picture: Social media

A South African at a voting station abroad wearing the colours of the South African flag and traditional Zulu pants, umblaselo. Picture: Social media

Published May 20, 2024


South Africans living abroad cast their vote at various High Commissions across the world.

Special voting abroad took place on May 18 and 19 at 111 South African missions across the world, to facilitate the voting of around 78 000 citizens.

There are nine days to go before South Africans cast their vote on Election Day, May 29, in the country.

According to the Electoral Commission of South Africa’s (IEC) page on X, 102 missions were open from 7am to 7pm to allow South Africans to make their choice.

The missions are in South Korea, China, India, Ireland and Germany, among others. In London, New York and Washington, the missions had extended the voting hours.

The IEC also revealed that London had the largest international voting population outside the country. South Africans living in London had two days of voting, on May 18 and 19, from 7am to 9pm, to ensure all 24 535 voters had a chance to vote.

Now that the special votes have been collected, with the unused ballot papers from all the 111 missions transported via a secure channel back to the country. #

The verification and counting of the votes will take place in the presence of representatives of contestants and observers.

South Africans living abroad turned out in their numbers and shared their voting experiences on social media platforms, including X and TikTok.

One voter on TikTok, who was voting at Trafalgar Square in Westminister London, @kai_blz, said: “First time voting!!! Feels really good :) 🥹🇿🇦🗳️.”

@kai_blz First time voting!!! feels really good :) 🥹🇿🇦🗳️ #southafricanelections2024 #southafricansabroad ♬ original sound - SA MUSIC EXCLUSIVES

On X, @KayMariinga, said: “Casted my vote in South Korea 🤝🏾🇿🇦🇿🇦🇿🇦#SAVotingAbroad.”

@scootersteveSA said: “@IECSouthAfrica voting is smooth and seemless in Berlin #SAelections24 #SAvotingabroad.”

@NanikiHenshaw said: “@IECSouthAfrica @ClaysonMonyela finished voting at SA Embassy in Ireland and the queue is still going on. I'm proud of South Africans 🇿🇦.”

It was also a colourful day as some voters chose to show patriotism by wearing items that had the colours of the South African flag and their Springbok jerseys.

The Independent Electoral Commission has expressed gratitude to South Africans who cast their special votes.

“Appreciations are also due to voters who in some instances had to endure intemperate weather, wait in queues for extended periods, and travel significant distances.

“In many stations, a steady flow of voters was reported throughout the day with some missions only closing some two hours beyond their scheduled operating hours,” said the IEC.

It said special votes were designed to ensure that special measures were put in place to make certain that citizens who would otherwise not be able to vote have opportunities to do so.

“The arrangements would not be possible without the support of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation and the dedication of the staff of the the department and heads of missions around the world,” said the IEC.