Namibia: Special Voting Proceeds Smoothly

Polling officer Wilber Wilbert waiting for voters at the Swakopmund Multi-Purpose Centre in Mondesa.
14 November 2019

Namibians living abroad voted at high commissions, embassies and consulates around the world as part of the special voting exercise ahead of the general election on 27 November.

Seagoing personnel, NDF, correctional services and police officers also voted across the country in a process that went relatively well despite a few hiccups.

At the coast, some seagoing workers could not vote despite making it early to the four polling stations at Walvis Bay. Fishing companies that failed to submit the lists of names of seagoing employees on time to the polling stations caused the challenge.

The Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) nevertheless gave fishing companies an opportunity to submit any missing names before closure of polls yesterday.

Some of the workers who voted at Walvis Bay complained about the 'slow pace' of the process, saying it was taking a single voter up to ten minutes to complete the process.

Presiding officer at the Walvis Bay Multipurpose Centre polling station Tracey Kaereho said that despite the slow turnout, the process started on time and was smooth.

In the Oshana region, a presiding officer at one of the polling stations in Ongwediva constituency said the special voting election went smoothly. "Our team of ECN officials started testing the electronic voting machines at around 06:00, before opening the polling stations to the voters at 07:00," said Jovin Bauleth.

At Rundu in Kavango East region, ECN official Sunya Neumbo was also happy with the process when one of our reporters visited the polling station at the town hall.

"Everything is under control, all is going well, our registered voters are not giving us problems, everything is in order," she said.

Special voting in Oshikoto region started on a high note during the morning hours and slowed down for the rest of the day according to returning officials interviewed by New Era.

Some polling stations at Olukonda and Eengodhi had not received any single voter as of late afternoon. Polling officials were, however, hopeful that eligible voters would stream in after hours and before the cut-off time at 21h00.

According to ECN regional coordinator Helena Kapenda no untoward incident was reported to the electoral body during special voting yesterday.

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