South African citizens will now be able to register for special votes online and via a SMS from their phones from this Friday until July 8.
This is the first time that voters will be able to apply through this method ahead of special votes on August 1 and 2.
The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) will also still use the old method of registering would be voters, such as submitting a MEC35 form at your local IEC office. Forms can only be hand-delivered, but someone else can deliver your completed form on your behalf via the Official IEC Election application.
Once you have registered, you will receive an SMS notifying you of the outcome once your application has been processed, but you can also check the status of your special vote application online at www.elections.org.za
According to the IEC , you can apply for a special vote if you can’t travel to your voting station because you are physically infirm, disabled or pregnant, or can’t vote at your voting station on election day, but can do so on the predetermined special voting days.
You can apply for special votes if:
• are a registered voter
• have a green, barcoded ID book, smartcard ID, or a valid Temporary Identity Certificate.
To make sure that you’re registered and to find out where you’re registered, you can:
• Check your voter registration status online at www.elections.org.za
• SMS your ID number to 32810
• Dial *120*432# on your cellphone
• If you can travel, but can’t vote at the voting station where you are registered on election day, you must vote at the voting station where you are registered either on Monday 1 August 2016 or Tuesday 2 August 2016. Voting stations will be open from 8am to 5pm for special voting (NOT from 7am to 7pm as is the case on election day).
• If you can’t travel to the voting station where you are registered because you are physically infirm, disabled or pregnant, voting officials will visit you on Monday 1 August 2016 or Tuesday 2 August 2016 at the place where you live (must be within the voting district where you’re registered) and allow you to vote.
What happens when I cast a special vote?
If your application for a special vote is successful, you will vote as follows:
• Your thumbnail is marked with indelible ink
• Your ID book is stamped
• You receive the relevant ballot papers
• You mark the ballots in secret, place and seal the ballots in an unmarked envelop
• The unmarked envelope is placed in another envelope that is marked with your name, ID number and voting district (VD) number. The use of two envelopes is to ensure the secrecy of your ballot (the outer envelope is discarded before counting
• IEC officials take the envelope and place it in a secure ballot box for special votes
• Your name is marked off the voters’ roll with “SV” to indicate that you have cast a special vote.
Watch videos below for more on election related stories: