LGE 2021 | Voting underway across South Africa

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Voting stations across South Africa opened at 7 am on Monday morning for the 2021 local government elections.

Over 23 000 polling stations are expected to operate until 9 pm.

LGE 2021 I South Africa goes for municipal polls, IEC assures readiness


Woodville Primary School, at Woodlands, in Mitchells Plain in Cape Town has been a hive of activity since early on Monday morning, as IEC officials and party agents prepared for today’s Local Government Elections.

Some political party agents started setting up their party’s stands outside Woodville Primary School from 5am already.

Supporters of the Democratic Alliance, Good and the Patriotic Alliance can be seen outside the school’s gates.

The cold and rainy weather doesn’t seem to have dampened their spirits.

Voting at the school started at 7 am with no disruptions.


Western Cape

The Western Cape Provincial Chief Electoral Officer, Michael Hendrickse, says all their systems are ready to welcome voters on Monday morning.

He says thus far, they have not received any reports of hiccups despite the rain in large parts of the province.

He has called on voters to go out and exercise their right to vote. He was speaking at the Provincial Results Operations Centre in Cape Town.

“This is the opportunity. It doesn’t come often, but now it’s your opportunity to have a say in who’s going to represent your area, your ward. Now is the time as they say. So, we call on all voters to please come out to the voting stations. Our voting stations will be open. Voters must bring ID whether it’s the green barcoded or the smart one or the temporary ID certificate. Home Affairs is open for all who need that certificate. We call on all our voters to come out. Stations open at seven o’clock till nine o’clock,” says Hendrickse.



Voters at Motupa in Tzaneen in Limpopo say they want the incoming local government to improve road conditions in the village. They say roads are so impassible that they sometimes carry coffins to the burial sites because hearses do not have access. Motupa has been identified as one of the election unrest hotspots by the Limpopo security cluster. These voters at the local voting station say they want improved services.

Limpopo’s Community Safety MEC Mavhungu-Lerule Ramakhanya says more than five thousand police officers, traffic officers and SANDF members will be deployed across the province on Monday.


Quiet start in Ekurhuleni

It’s a quiet start in the City of Ekhurleni on Monday, as voters begin to trickle into polling stations across the City. Ekhuruleni has the second-highest number of registered voters in Gauteng with more than 1.5 million people on the voters roll this year.

Just a few people can be seen waiting in lines to enter the polling stations as their doors open up at 07:00.

Strict COVID-19 protocols do seem to be in place, as the few people who are already waiting in line can be seen wearing face masks and are observing social distancing.

Police are also out in their numbers and are keeping a close eye on the polling stations to ensure law and order.

Meanwhile, more than 17 500 eligible voters have registered to cast their ballots in Houtbay in Cape Town. This comes as more than 26 million voters are expected to participate in the 5th democratic municipal elections in South Africa.

The elections are conducted for the first time under lockdown regulations and during a pandemic. About 300 voting stations have been identified as so-called hotspots in the country.

Hout Bay, a fishing community in ward 74 is located next to two iconic landmarks, the Sentinel on the Southern tip of the African continent and another iconic mountain – Chapman’s Peak which is facing the Sentinel. More than 33 400 people live in the area. It includes communities in Hangberg, Imizamo Yethu and Landudno.

Hangberg is a predominantly coloured community while Imizamo Yethu is a predominantly IsiXhosa speaking community. The two areas have been at the centre of protest action in recent years in Houtbay over lack of service delivery, fishing rights and lack of access to land to accommodate the communities.

KwaZulu-Natal: officers will be deployed in the KwaNyavu 

Police Minister Bheki Cele says more officers will be deployed in the KwaNyavu area in Mkhambathini in KwaZulu-Natal, where voting stations could not open to carry out Special Votes over the weekend. Cele says now the province has 128 high-risk voting stations which will be closely monitored by police. He says police will be out in full force to ensure the affected voting stations are able to open on time  on Monday.


LGE 2021 I South Africa goes for municipal polls, IEC assures readiness

Northern Cape IEC urges residents to vote

The IEC in the Northern Cape is encouraging residents to come in their numbers to cast their ballots. IEC Head in the province Bonolo Modise says all 728 voting stations in the Northern Cape will be opened from 7 am until 9 pm on Monday.

He says over 620 000 registered voters across the province are expected to cast their votes and has assured the public that all COVID-19 protocols measures will be adhered to.

“We’re hoping that as many voters as possible, those that have registered will show up to exercise their right to vote for those people that would form the new council in the areas where they stay. We’ve put into place the proper COVID-19 measures to ensure the safety of all the voters who will be coming to our stations. We’d like to encourage as many people as possible to come and vote. Those were applied for special votes and we’re not able to vote either on Saturday or on Sunday are more than welcome to come to stations and vote,” says Modise.

LGE 2021 | Discussion on SA’s declining voter turnout pattern: Prof Joleen Steyn Kotze

Enoch Mgijima Municipality, in the Eastern Cape

Residents of the Komani-based Enoch Mgijima Municipality, in the Eastern Cape, are hoping that Monda elections will bring about much-needed basic services.

The municipality has faced a number of challenges including water shortages due to drought, lack of rubbish collection and poor maintenance of roads. It further forms part of the 14 financially-distressed municipalities in the province. It has also been receiving poor audit outcomes due to the mismanagement of its finances.

Resident Loyiso Mputhi says their living conditions continue to deteriorate.

“We have a challenge of water and it’s been a while nobody is listening to the community about what they want as a result we have youth that have resorted to drugs and drinking too much. I hope the candidate that we are going to vote for will do better for the community and he or she must listen to the community,” says Mputhi.

LGE 2021 | Discussion on voter turnout with Dr Collette Schulz-Herzenberg