IEC hopes online registration will attract younger voters
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Cape Town - The Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) in the province is hoping that its new online self-registration portal will attract voters aged between 18 to 19 to sign up to vote at the local government elections in October.
Provincial electoral officer Michael Hendrickse said the province has about 3 million registered voters on its voters roll and of these there are only 3 400 from the 18-19 age group.
Hendrickse was speaking during a virtual presentation to participants about the IEC’s online voter registration facility which allows new voters to register and existing voters to update or amend their registration via a computer, smart mobile device or tablet.
“We’ve been working towards online, and maybe that will help because young people are generally more tech-savvy and they generally will be more willing to just go online and register.”
The online voter registration facility is part of the IEC’s commitment to provide greater accessibility and convenience to voters. It follows the implementation of a range of other digital service channels over the past five years including online candidate nominations, online special vote applications and online party funding declarations.
Commission spokesperson Kate Bapela said: “The new online voter registration facility has been in development for a number of years. The first phase was the introduction of an online service known as ’Click, Check, Confirm’ ahead of the 2019 national and provincial elections through which existing voters were able to check and amend their registration.
“More than 35 000 voters have made use of this system since its introduction. The second phase that we have now launched will utilise a number of security checks to ensure the integrity of the voters roll.
“These include the use of a one-time-pin verification and the submission of a scan or photograph of the voter’s ID document.”