South Africa: SA to Go to the Polls On May 8, Says Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa giving his second State of the Nation address.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that he intends to proclaim May 8 as the date of the 2019 general elections.

"In a few months' time, South Africans will go to the polls for the sixth time in our democracy to vote for national and provincial governments," Ramaphosa said during his 2019 State of the Nation Address.

"This is an opportunity for our people to exercise their hard-won right to determine the direction of this country.

"I have engaged with the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and also with the premiers of all provinces, and intend to proclaim the 8th of May 2019 as the date of the election."

Ramaphosa said he wished to remind all eligible South Africans who had not yet registered as voters that they still had until the official proclamation of the election date to register.

In January, the Municipal Demarcation Board (MDB) said municipal boundaries were in place and would remain that way for the 2019 national and provincial elections.

80% of new voters under 30

The MDB is an independent constitutional institution that determines and reviews municipal boundaries. If demarcations are not set, the IEC cannot complete its voter registration roll.

The IEC, meanwhile, completed its final registration weekend on January 26 and 27.

More than 80% of new voters who registered during the final registration weekend were younger than 30 years old, the IEC said.

The commission, however, was concerned that about nine million eligible voters were still not registered, of which some six million are under 30.

Based on population estimates from Statistics South Africa, the IEC said the current voters' roll reflected a total registration of 74.5% of the eligible population.

Source: News24

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