ELECTIONS 2019 - Western Cape Provincial Electoral Officer Courtney Sampson addressed the media during the first media briefing at the IEC Results Centre in Cape Town yesterday morning. He said all voting stations were operational, with minor glitches experienced early morning with the zip-zip machines at a couple of voting stations that were not switched to the correct mode.
"The zip-zip machines are used for voter registration and for voter identification. Our IEC officials quickly assisted the presiding officers at the relevant stations to correct the zip-zip machine's mode. We apologise to the voters who had to unnecessarily endure the rain as a result," he said.
Sampson paid tribute to the electoral conduct observer commission monitors who visited voting stations across the Western Cape yesterday to ensure that voting takes place in a free and fair manner. He said the involvement of More than Peace, an observer group that visited voting stations, increased transparency.
Sampson said the low-lying areas were being closely monitored to ensure that the rain would not negatively affect the voting process. "We also receive regular feedback from the joint operations centre that is run by law enforcement agencies on any problems that may be experienced."
Problems were experienced in two areas early yesterday morning, when a riot occurred in Plettenberg Bay and structures were destroyed in a fire in Khayelitsha, Cape Town. "Fortunately the Department of Home Affairs will be available to assist voters until 21:00 to obtain temporary identity documents." Sampson said certain people, however, would not be able to vote yesterday, such as people who were admitted into the hospital the previous night, and people who were in police cells yesterday. "The IEC has not made provisions for these people to vote at this stage," said Sampson.
He said voting in the Western Cape was off to a good start. He thanked the political parties for their interest in the result centre and for giving feedback to the IEC on minor problems being experienced at voting stations. "Your feedback allows the IEC to smoothen out the system. We appreciate your careful monitoring, it is highly valued."
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