Gauteng residents queue to vote

By Drum Digital
07 May 2014

Gauteng residents queued at polling stations across the province to cast their votes on Wednesday.

Residents in Alexandra, north of Johannesburg queued at polling stations across the township to cast their votes on Wednesday.

The queues started to become longer after 8am, an hour after voting started. They brought portable chairs, food, water and chatted to each other as they waited in the queue.

Fatcakes, porridge and coffee was the preferred breakfast at a voting station along Florence Mophosho Street.

First time voter, Dumisani Mbokani, 21, leaned against a wall with earphones tucked in his ears.

"I am still not sure which party I am going to vote for. I will see and decide once I have the ballot paper in my hands," he said.

At a church on Eleventh Avenue, staff separated pensioners from other voters.

The process was meant to make sure the queues moved swiftly, one staff member told voters.

Meanwhile at several polling stations visited by DRUM from as early as 04:00, voters, mainly senior citizens were the first in line.

At Mojala-Thuto Primary School, in Evaton, there were over 50 excited voters lining up.

Ntsoaki

There was a brief moment of anger when Emfuleni Local Municipality traffic officials moved voters from their original line along the busy Selbourne Road to a different and safer entrance of the school.

Thabiso Machobane (54) from Evaton who has voted in all elections since 1994, says voting has always been important for him.

“If you don’t vote, you can’t complain,” he says.

Another voter, Joe Mokgale (50) says voting is the only way for him to raise his voice about his concerns.

“There are lot of problems in this country but we can’t give up, we must vote,” he says.

By 05:00, over 200 residents were queuing inside the premises of Qwelang Primary School in Sebokeng Zone waiting patiently for IEC officials to open the doors at 07:00.

A few blocks away, outside the Thuthukani Primary School, party representatives from the ANC and the new kids on the block, the EFF could be seen talking to voters and checking their names on the voter’s roll at their tables outside the polling station.

Puleng Motinyane (38) and her elder sister Mantwa (47) were excited to vote.

“We woke up early so we could vote early,” says Puleng.

By Thato Mokubung and SAPA

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