THOUSANDS of Mozambicans living in South Africa voted yesterday in what they called a vote for change.
About 40000 Mozambicans made their mark in the fourth elections after the end of the civil war in 1992.
Though polling stations were not crowded, short queues were seen in around Johannesburg.
Constantino Santos Lina de Conceicas, 53, voted at the Mozambican consulate in Rosebank.
"I voted for change in Mozambican politics because that is what I believe we need now," De Conceicas said.
"The ruling party has failed to give us change that creates job opportunities and help the poor," he said.
De Conceicas, of Soweto, has been living in South Africa since 1988 with his family and he makes and sells artefacts in Boksburg.
In the Johannesburg CBD, the queue could be seen at about 10.30am.
Sarah Fumo, 47, voted for the first time.
"I voted for change because we still don't have job opportunities and descent houses in Maputo," said Fumo, who has been in Johannesburg since 1989.
But Fumbeia Macumbine Antonio, 30, believes the ruling party should stay in power.
"I believe Frelimo is the only party that can change the lives of the Mozambican people.
"I have to work hard for every rand I earn in South Africa while people enjoy free basic services such as health and education back home."
Antonio also voted in the last Mozambican elections in 2004.
Voters were issued with two ballot papers, one for the presidential election and one for the political party of choice.
The two most contesting presidential candidate are President Armando Emilio Guebuza of the Frelimo and Renamo's Afonso Dhlakama.
Guebuza is tipped to continue his reign.
"Frelimo will rule till Jesus comes back.
"Frelimo is the only party that is good for the Mozambicans," said Luis Adelino da Silva, consul general of the Republic of Mozambique in Rosebank.
Da Silva said voting would closed at 8pm.
Polling stations were available in every province in the country with Gauteng having seven.