South Africans living abroad have until Sunday to cast their votes – SABC News


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South Africans living in the UK, Portugal, the Netherlands, Poland, Australia and others are looking forward to casting their ballots on Saturday.

South Africa is one of the few countries on the African continent that allow its citizens abroad to participate in elections.

This year, the Electoral Commission saw a record number of registered voters overseas who’ve applied to cast special votes.

Voting hours extended 

The Electoral Commission (IEC) says operating hours at its London voting stations will be extended from 07:00 to 21:00.

Registered voters in nine countries cast their ballots on Friday and South African nationals in other countries will today cast their votes.

London, which has the largest number of eligible voters with over 24 000 registered, will receive an additional voting day, which has been extended until Sunday.

IEC Deputy Chief Electoral Officer, Masego Shiburi, explains, “The voting will open at 07:00 and the stations will remain open until 21:00 in the evening. The only variation will be in the London mission, which is the largest voting station, both in the country and overseas. In that station there’s an additional day – there are also extended hours. So, the voting will open at 07:00 in the morning and the station will remain open until 21:00 hours, both today Saturday and tomorrow (Sunday). Similarly, Washington DC and New York will have extended operating hours.”

PODCAST | More South Africans abroad cast ballots today as voting weekend gets off to a good start: 

Tanzania

Meanwhile, in Tanzania, South Africans are casting their votes at the South African mission in Dar es Salaam. SABC news correspondent Isaac Lukando says voting began at 7am and is expected to continue until 7pm.

New York City

Voting has also opened in New York City in the US and voters can visit the South African consulate to cast their ballot.

VIDEO | South Africans in New York City vote at consulate:

Hong Kong

South Africans who are living in Asia are voting in Hong Kong. They told SABC News that it is important for them to participate in this election.

Those voting abroad will only be able to vote on a national ballot.

SABC News correspondent Laura Westbrook, reporting from Hong Kong, says some of the key issues from the people she spoke to were basic services. They say that even though they are South Africans living abroad, they are still very much connected to home – for their family members back home.

 





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