Car crashes, protests cause some voting delays - IEC

2016-08-01 21:15
Local elections 2016 get underway. (News24)

Pretoria - Three car crashes delayed the start of special voting in Limpopo, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal on Monday, the IEC has said.

Other delays were caused by incorrect ballot papers being delivered to four voting stations, Independent Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) chief executive officer Mosotho Moepya told reporters in Pretoria.

The outer covers were correct, but the ballot papers were meant for a different ward. Protests halted operations in a few other parts of the country.

"A few voting stations reported opening late or were still not open at 11:00 due to community protest action which was preventing election staff from gaining access to these areas, including trenches being dug to prevent vehicular access," he said.

Of the three car accidents, one was serious. The presiding officer of a voting station in Tubatse-Fetakgomo municipality in Limpopo was seriously injured and taken to hospital.

The other two accidents, involving a presiding officer in Mpumalanga and an area manager in Edumbe, KwaZulu-Natal, were not serious and the officials reported for duty.

Other than these isolated incidents, special voting got off to a smooth start around the country. The vast majority of voting stations were open and ready on time, and teams went out on home visits.

A record 719 222 applications for special votes were approved for the elections, including 315 597 home visits and 403 625 votes to be cast at voting stations.

Moepya said voting stations were not opened in Vuwani, Limpopo, after the IEC decided to postpone special voting until Tuesday, due to the small number of applications received. Only 32 people had applied for special votes.

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