ELECTIONS: Special voting underway around the country

The first votes in the 2021 Municipal
Elections were cast from 08h00 today as voters who had applied for special votes
began casting their ballots at voting stations and home visits around the country.
Reports from provinces indicate that special voting got off to a steady start with the
vast majority of voting stations reporting being open and ready on time and home visit teams deployed as planned.
Provincial reports reflect that voting is underway with a few exceptions where there were delays due to bad weather conditions. Overnight storms blew away tents in Gauteng, the Eastern Cape and North West but these were either re-installed or replaced in time for the opening of voting stations.
There were also few incidents where landlords, at the 11th hour, reneged on lease
agreements for voting stations. Alternative arrangements were made in time and
voting was not affected.

A record 1 110 194 applications for special votes were approved for the elections –
including 507 354 (49%) home visits and 602 780 (51%) votes to be cast at voting
stations. Special voting takes places today and tomorrow between 08h00 and 17h00
at both voting stations and home visits.
There are 1174 voting stations where no applications of special votes were received.
This voting stations will therefore not be opening on both days of special votes.
We have a report of an incident where the Commission was unable to open eight
voting stations. This was in Camperdown, KwaZulu-Natal where community members
unhappy with matters related to traditional leadership.
Given the record scale of the 2021 Municipal Elections, the Electoral Commission is
highly satisfied with the start of special voting. Besides offering voters who cannot vote at the voting station on 1 November an opportunity to participate, special voting also provide the Electoral Commission with an opportunity to identify and resolve any
challenges ahead of Election Day.
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