IEC set to bring about change at South Africa’s voting stations

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There are changes heading towards South Africa’s voting stations, as the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) prepares to issue a tender for new voter registration technology.

This new technology will apparently support the process of voter registration to manage the voters’ roll on voting day.

In a recent statement, the IEC explains 60 000 portable devices were purchased and will replace ageing existing devices, which are known as zip-zip machines.

This follows the controversy surrounding the national elections in May after the indelible ink pens proved ineffective, with some voters easily rubbing off the ink. This resulted in some voters casting their vote more than once.

Now looking to the future, the IEC claims the new approach will deviate from the current voter registration system. The current system, which involves the scanning of an identity document and recording the data is classified as outdated.

Looking at harnessing advances in technology and applying them to resolve previous issues, the IEC says that in terms of the tender, a staggered delivery of the devices is envisaged commencing two months from the date the award is made; and concluding no later than March 2021.

As the IEC prepares to implement the new system, the commission claims a number of voters are in custody for double voting. Furthermore, the IEC claims it has also demanded an investigation into the effectiveness of the indelible ink marker pens supplied for the elections.

With the IEC taking steps to minimise the chances of double voting while embracing new technology, what are your thoughts on the matter? Do you feel a new system will assist the IEC or not? Share your thoughts and opinions with us in the comment section below.

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