Earlier this week the Parliamentary Monitoring Group revealed that there was a massive 47 percent drop in voter registration in 18 to 19-year-old age group ahead of the National Elections next month.
In 2014 the voter registration for this age group was 646 313, while the 2019 number is 341 236.
According to IOL News, the Western Cape Provincial Electoral Commission said that the drop is due to the fact that people have to physically register to vote and cannot do so via electronic media, which is something that this age group is used to.
“Presently the Electoral Act requires that a person must register in person. It is it possible to do anything else legally. The act must be changed to make provision for other forms of registration to make it easier for young voters,” said Western Cape Provincial Electoral Commission head, Courtney Sampson.
The Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) senior manager, Granville Abrahams, added that the IEC had planned to replace the registration process with hardware and software applications before the elections, but procurement challenges made it impossible.
“The IEC’s focus is on using technology to replace the need for physical map and barcodes, thus allowing the voters roll to be updated remotely and immediately,’ concluded Abrahams.
How this drop will affect the upcoming elections, remains to be seen.