South African Opposition parties raise ‘double voting’ concerns

May 9, 2019
| Report Focus News

Opposition parties in South Africa have raised concerns about possible voter fraud in Wednesday’s general election, local media reports say.

Local daily TimesLive says the centrist Democratic Alliance (DA) raised 600 concerns with the electoral agency, claiming double voting was the most pressing issue.

The newspaper says the Economic Freedom Fighters also submitted a letter to the electoral commission, raising their concerns.

However, the governing African National Congress (ANC) dismissed the claims as “hullabaloo”, saying voter fraud could be easily detected if it took place.

Mike Moriarty of the DA said the ink used to mark voters’ thumbs was removable and this could allow people to vote twice.

“We have raised concerns about possible fraud,” he said, adding that many machines to scan voters’ IDs at polling stations were not working.

The small Congress of the People (Cope) party raised similar concerns.

One of its MPs, Deidre Carter, said she could have voted at five polling stations if she wanted to.

The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) said it was investigating two cases of people being able to cast more their one vote at different polling stations.

The IEC said it viewed the alegations in a serious light, and had launched an investigation.

“Fortunately, the election process contains a number of checks and safeguards which together serve to protect the integrity of the process,” it added.