Should we voters be concerned?

The final day of voter registration threw up more than a few anomalies and maybe we should be concerned. Some voters who had registered at the previous registration weekend a month or so back found that their addresses were incorrect with many St Francis Bay residents finding their details had been recorded under St Francis Links. Others found they were not even on the voters roll in spite of registering so the question must be asked. Should we be concerned?

Voters may not realise the problem of being listed under the Links for they may feel the having to go to the Links to vote nothing more than an inconvenience. But it is a lot more serious than that for both the Links and Sea Vista no longer form part of the St Francis voting district as they have now been moved to the Oyster Bay district. Why this was necessary must also be questioned for surely both fall within the boundaries of St Francis. Had Cape St Francis been moved to Oyster Bay it would have been equally curious but at least Cape St Francis is a little remote to St Francis Bay, the Links and Sea Vista.

Those old enough to have lived under the past regime may recall how adept the Nationalist government were at changing voting boundaries whenever the threat of the United Party and later the Progressive Party having a majority in a marginal seat seemed possible. Well it seems the present ruling party may have learnt well from their antagonists hence the change of the boundaries.

Now the errors could be put down some disinterested data capturer not bothering to read the registration forms properly or not understanding the geographical makeup of the region and on seeing the words St Francis simply added to the Links. But then, maybe not?

The ruling party has given us little reason to trust them particular as it seems they are willing to even defy the constitution so it is possible there is something more sinister going on. Is it possible that their cadres are in fact those capturing the data and quietly ‘fixing’ the books in the hope that no one would notice, particularly those who had registered weeks earlier and unlikely to check? And what of those who registered this past weekend, would they ever check as they had done their duty and registered and the voters roll is due to close any day now.

Come the 4th or 5th August when the votes have been counted it will be too late to complain and so it is imperative that every South African resident over the age of 18 in the greater St Francis area make sure they are properly registered with the correct address. And it is important that they do so immediately for once the election date is promulgated in the Government Gazette, the voters roll is immediately closed and thus too late to do anything about it.

Here is some information on how to check your registration details.

  • Go directly to the IEC Offices in Humansdorp – Arcade Centre, Main St – Tel: 042 295 2079
  • SMS your ID Number to 32810 (R1.00 per SMS), or

Something to ponder

In the words of  Solly Moeng is brand reputation management adviser and CEO of strategic corporate communications consultancy DonValley in his article in Fin24 of 6th April, . Is the IEC still worthy of total trust?

“Now, supposing it is true that the vote counting system used in Polokwane in 2007 was indeed manipulated – even though this has never been proven – what, given the current climate of political desperation, would stop those in power from doing anything, including rigging elections, to remain in power?

Isn’t the shocking disregard of a crystal-clear, unambiguous judgment by the highest court in the land a good enough indication that our democracy has entered seriously troubled, uncharted waters where the leadership will stop at nothing to stay on top?

What must happen to assure us – ordinary South Africans – that should the elections go ahead as expected, the Independent Electoral Commission, which we have all trusted blindly since the dawn of our democracy, will remain free from capture by the dark forces of our times?”