There has been an increase in the number of registered voters in KwaZulu-Natal. This comes as this past weekend, 18 to 19 September, concluded the last official physical voter registration before preparation for the 2021 Local Government Election (LGE) gets underway. The IEC will over the course of the week release statistics and the status of the voters roll.
According to the Provincial Office, KwaZulu-Natal has an increase in registration from 5 411 237 in 2016 to 5 524 666 in 2019. This resulted in the Municipal Demarcation Board having to realign the inner boundaries, resulting in an increase of wards from 870 to 901 and subsequently increasing the number of councillors within the province.
A total of 218 out of the 4938 voting districts were affected by the redetermination of ward boundaries also increasing the number of voting stations in the province. Voting stations have increased from 4 885 voting stations during the 2019 national and provincial election to 4 940 for the 2021 elections.
On 20 September, the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma gazetted the date of the municipal elections scheduled for 1 November 2021. This will be the sixth municipal election held in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994.
Gazetting of the election date means that the IEC will seal the voters’ roll. “The gazetting of the date is taking us a step closer to voting day. We urge all South Africans who will be embarking on campaigning and canvassing for votes to do so responsibly while respecting the Covid regulations and protocols,” said Dlamini-Zuma.
Once the election results are confirmed, councils for all 48 districts, 8 metropolitan and 205 local municipalities in each of the country’s nine provinces will be elected.
The Constitutional Court order has also resulted in a revision of the election timetable which has been drastically reduced the timeframe from the usual 86 days to 42 days from the date the election is proclaimed to the election day.
The truncated draft timetable is reflected below:
Election Proclamation 20 September
Closure of Candidate Nomination 21 September
Voter Roll Inspection 21 to 23 September
Voters Roll Certification and Publication 26 September