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IEC's systems up and running for the big day

By unknown | Apr 16, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Ido Lekota

Ido Lekota

It's all systems go, with the more than 23million South Africans on the voters roll left with only six days before they cast their votes in the general elections.

As part of the preparations for next Wednesday, the Independent Electoral Commission yesterday opened the Results Operations Centre at the Pretoria Showgrounds. This is where the IEC will operate until the election results are announced on April 23.

The centre also serves as an operation base for journalists, political analysts, foreign election observers, as well as representatives of the 26 parties contesting the national election.

Speaking at the opening ceremony yesterday, IEC chief electoral officer Pansy Tlakula said the centre was another way in which the commission sought to enhance transparency.

IEC chairperson Brigalia Bam said one of the unique characteristics of the commission in this country was the establishment of the political party liaison committee - comprising representatives of the various political parties - who engage with the IEC to improve the running of free and fair elections.

The IEC's records show that 26 of these 41 parties have registered for the national election - with the rest contesting only at provincial level.

Bam said she was also optimistic that there would be a greater turnout of voters than in the last elections.

"The increase in the number of young voters will no doubt boost the turnout. Already we are experiencing interest among voters, which is a good sign for democracy."

IEC records show that more than 50percent of those registered to vote are between the ages of 18 and 39. The records also show that 23181997 voters have registered.


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