South Africans abroad head to the polls on Friday

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South Africans in nine of the 111 foreign missions across the world are set to cast their votes on Friday (May 17).

According to the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC), voting will take place in Algiers, Amman, Cairo, Damascus, Kuwait City, Jeddah, Ramallah, Riyadh, and Tehran respectively.

Voting stations are expected to operate from 7 am – 7 pm.

“All missions have already received the election materials, which include ballot papers, voting booths, ballot boxes, envelopes, and a voter list,” Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo said earlier in the week, adding the Commission expects a turnout of 76 580 voters worldwide.

Meanwhile, South African citizens in the remaining 102 countries will cast their ballots on Saturday.

London has the largest cohort of voters with an expected turnout of 24 194 voters.  Mamabolo said as a result, voting stations in that City will operate on Saturday and Sunday.

What happens after South Africans abroad have voted?

For security and confidentiality reasons, ballot papers will first be placed in an unmarked envelope. This envelope will be placed into a second envelope marked with the voting station and voter’s details. The second envelope will then be placed into a secured ballot box.

Once secured, the ballot will be transported back to the IEC’s national office in Centurion, Pretoria, for counting.

The counting of international votes will take place a day after the elections.