The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) says everything is running smoothly at the Results Centre in Pretoria. The centre is operational again and it is all systems go for the Local Government Elections.
The centre was evacuated on Saturday evening. Just after 6 o’clock on Saturday night, the IEC’s Results Operation Centre (ROC) in Pretoria had to be evacuated due to a power outage.
The ROC is the electoral commission’s nerve centre during national elections. It is where the capturing, auditing, collating and announcing of elections results happen. The main aim of the centre is to promote the transparency of the electoral process.
Emergency Services says an electrical fault led to the evacuation. IEC officials have disputed reports that there was a fire at the Results Operations Centre.
The IEC explains that: “By the time we left it was already quite late in the evening and there was no sign of any damage whatsoever to give an impression that there was a fire. So again this morning we are fully operational and we are back at work.”
The SABC’s foreign editor Sophie Mokoena was at the ROC preparing for a live show when the incident occurred.
“We are standing here outside the IEC national results centre and we were inside preparing for our show that starts at 8 tonight Elections 360 degrees when suddenly we didn’t have power. When we made inquiries we were told there were problems with the generator. We did call Eskom to check whether the problem is not based on load shedding and Eskom was quite clear that there was no load shedding.”
Tshwane Emergency Services says there was a faulty electrical circuit. “I can confirm that there was no fire at the IEC results centre. The only report that we received from our members is that an electric circuit on a DB BOX became faulty resulting in the power being cut off. And the centre had to be evacuated to give the technicians more time to fix the electrical problem,” says Tshwane Emergency Services spokesperson, Charles Mabaso.
IEC’s Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo on measures in place at the ROC in Pretoria: