As the 2019 national elections draw closer, more than 29 000 registered South African citizens living abroad will have the chance to cast their votes over the weekend (27th April).

According to Times Live, voting will take place at South Africa’s high commissions, embassies and consulates across the globe, and will be conducted by South African diplomats who have been trained as election staff by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).

“The 29 334 voters who have received approval to vote overseas are required to visit the mission indicated on their application and take with them their South African ID documents (green ID book or smart card or valid temporary ID certificate) and their valid passport. This year the voting process has been simplified and they will no longer be required to complete a special vote application form before voting,” explained IEC  spokesperson, Kate Bapela.

The IEC added that the overseas voting will continue for 24 hours as voting stations will open and close around the world following the movement of the Sun, beginning in Auckland and ending in Los Angeles.

The IEC states that those voting overseas will only be allowed to vote in the national elections, but not in the provincial ones. With London having the highest number of expected voters at 9 084, followed by Dubai with 1 542.

“Once they have voted, their ballot is sealed in a double envelope and all ballots are placed in sealed diplomatic bags which will be transported back to the national office of the IEC over the coming week. At the close of voting on election day South Africa (21:00 on 8th May) the returned overseas ballots will be opened by election official, counted and added to the national ballot count for each party in the national elections,” concluded Bapela.

[Source – Times Live]