Picture: BLOOMBERG/WALDO SWIEGERS
Picture: BLOOMBERG/WALDO SWIEGERS

The announcement of the final election result could be delayed as the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) looks into allegations of double voting and conducts new audits of several voting stations.

The final results were due to be announced on Saturday.

The DA’s James Selfe said his party had called for 15 voting stations to go through this process, and that the EFF had also raised the same issue.

The new audits can only be done once the initial counting and results are handed over to the IEC and placed on the national system. Commissioner Janet Love said the IEC has thus far only received two reports of allegations of double voting, and has asked parties to come forward with detailed information.

“We would like [the allegations] to be as specific as possible. To say that something is possible, or look at it on social media does not give us enough to chew on,” she said.

As vote counting hits the halfway mark on May 9 2019, SA's politicians comment on the election process thus far.

Love said the commission wanted the allegations to be properly investigated. “This is not something an individual does by accident. We definitely want to deal with people. It is a huge slap in the face of SA citizens.”

Reports started surfacing on Wednesday that the ink used to mark those who had voted was easy to wash off; that ID scanners at some voting stations had malfunctioned; and that some people were going from station to station, casting more than one ballot and bragging about it on social media.

The IEC is expected to brief the media on Thursday afternoon when the matter is likely to be dealt with. IEC CEO Sy Mamabolo said the audit process to be undertaken is to “check the extent of the phenomenon”, and that a scientific process needs to be used to determine this.

“Our perspective on the audit is that it is an assurance-giving matter ... [It will] ensure there is integrity in the process,” Mamabolo said, adding that it is yet to be seen if the issue has had a material impact on the results.

The IEC was speaking to state agencies to ensure it had the capacity to conduct the audit expeditiously. An auditing firm has not yet been identified to conduct the new audit.

Mamabolo could not say if the announcement of the final result would be delayed but said the commission wanted to declare results with a measure of confidence.

The IEC has seven days to announce the results after voting stations close.

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