Hiccups: Ink vanishes after simple wash

2011-05-19 00:00

THERE were “ink hiccups” at various polling stations during the elections yesterday around the country.

A woman from Wembley, who voted at Claredon Primary School, expressed her shock when she went home washed her hands and the ink mark vanished.

“I was so surprised when the ink was washed off. The official didn’t mark my nail but my skin, I don’t think they [officials] had enough experience,” she added.

Another voter at Heather Primary School said, “When I got home I used a tiny bit of Jik and it came off completely. I was astonished because I read that it’s supposed to last for three days at least.”

According to Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), the small ink on the left thumb is meant to stay for days as proof that you voted.

“I could have gone back to the polls and voted again,” the woman said.

The IEC’s Mawethu Mosery said it is a common mistake.

“There’s a koki in the voting pack and some inkers are using it instead of the marking ink to mark people’s thumbs,” Mosery explained.

He reassured voters that there are other measures in place to prevent people voting twice, such as having their IDs stamped and their names crossed off the roll.

It later turned out that the “ink hiccup” was a national problem and lots of people complained about it.

The inks on the thumb of Congress of the People (COPE) general secretary Deidre Carter also wiped off.

However, Carter went back and got the voting staff to check their pens and find the right markers.

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