Voters respond in numbers

2014-02-10 00:00

APART from two protests that threatened voter registration in two parts of KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday, the province had a smooth voter registration over the weekend.

KZN provincial electoral officer Mawethu Mosery said yesterday had been good day and no major issues were experienced.

“The few we had yesterday [Saturday] were not there today. We had voters at the voting stations throughout the day,” Mosery said just two hours before voting stations closed at 5 pm.

Mosery said the two protests in Loskop and KwaDukuza on Saturday when protesters attempted to block access to the voting stations, lasted hardly an hour after the police intervened.

“They [protesters] wanted to speak to the local politicians, that was facilitated,” Mosery said.

Politically parties were pleased with the last voter registration weekend.

“We are satisfied that the voter registration was characterised by a fair level of participation, especially young people,” ANC provincial secretary Sihle Zikalala said.

DA provincial leader Sizwe Mchunu said: “We are positive and hopeful that many people responded. We are encouraged people supported our call to register.”

IFP spokesperson Joshua Mazibuko said: “We have not heard anything negative. Generally, people are coming in their numbers to register.

KZN presently has 4,7 million registered voters and the IEC had planned to exceed the five million mark.

This past weekend saw parties deploying their big wigs to conduct door-to-door campaigns across the province.

Yesterday, former police commissioner Bheki Cele and ANC volunteers went around student residences to encourage students to register on Durban’s South Beach.

In an interview, Cele said he did not know why many have left it until the last moment to register. His visit showed many had not registered but had no qualms about registering when appealed to.

“If the authority of decision was with me I would have come up with another day,” Cele said referring to a need for another registration weekend.

He said the electorate was receptive to the ANC, but wanted the ruling party to do more.

“They raise issues, but nobody says ‘I am not going to vote ANC’. They do put conditions, ‘please do this and please do that’.

“We agree that their lives must be improved,” he said.

“The voters will decide. It’s not for me to make a call,” he said when asked about the likely percentage the ruling party would obtain.

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