Change – that’s what the residents who turned out to vote in Slovoville, Winterveld in Tshwane want.
“We can’t keep on doing the same thing and expect different results. We need to exercise our right to vote so that we can see the change we so desperately need here,” Victor Sihlangu said.
Sihlangu cast his vote at the Abel Motshoane Secondary School voting station where there was a hive of activity outside the station, but officials inside said the numbers were lower than they were expecting.
An Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) official at the ward 19 station said that, by 5pm, they had only recorded 700 voters. ANC officials outside the station said the low voter turnout at the station was concerning. In 2016 the ANC won the ward with more than 2 900 votes.
READ: All we got from the DA coalition government in Tshwane is ‘neglect’
“Crime and unemployment are rife. We’ve been voting and nothing is changing. I thought it was important today to come vote because I want to see change. The streetlights here haven’t been working since 2016. The people who are lucky to have jobs risk their lives when they wake up early in the morning for work,” 26-year-old Sibusiso said.
RT @Mbiizozo: 36-year-old Victor Sihlangu says he is here to vote for a change and “give others a chance”.#LGE2021 #CityPress pic.twitter.com/GzFsrEQ179— City Press (@City_Press) November 1, 2021
Crossing the M21 to Lebanon, Mabopane, there was also a low turnout at the Ikeleng Primary School. IEC officials at the station said they were expecting around 800 voters but by 5pm they had only recorded just over 240 voters.
DA officials outside the station said that the low turnout was worrying. “People are over it all, they are tired of the lack of service delivery and the political killings happening around here,” one official said.
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ANC officials were more optimistic, saying that people were still coming to vote. “People have lives. It is a hot day and they didn’t want to be waiting in long queues. The numbers will pick up,” they said.
Mogomotsi Phalatse, a resident of Lebanon, said he felt it was important to vote because not voting is ignorant. “If you want to make a change, this is how you do it,” Phalatse said.