President Jacob Zuma visited the Electoral Commission of South Africa’s (IEC) national results operations centre in Tshwane on Tuesday, and was impressed with the state of readiness for the upcoming local government elections.
“From the briefing I’ve had, to me it is clear that very little could go wrong. I can say, everything will go fine because the process is so transparent and everyone has the opportunity to look at it,” Zuma told a scrum of local and international media during his short visit.
“I’m very happy…and I think the manner in which we conduct our elections is indeed satisfying. I think our democracy is maturing together with the systems under the direction of the IEC. I’m very happy and I can now say, without any fear of contradiction, we are ready for the elections. In fact, the fact that they have started with special votes indicates our readiness.”
The president, accompanied by a large entourage of bodyguards, was taken on a tour of the huge IEC national results operations centre by IEC staff including chairperson Vuma Glen Mashinini.
Zuma said all that was left by Tuesday afternoon was for registered voters to “vote properly”.
“I am looking forward to having less spoilt papers because we have been voting all the time. These elections are quite elaborate. These are municipal elections (happening) in every corner of the country and I’m confident we are going going to do very well,” said Zuma.
Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema had a similar tour of the facility on Tuesday morning.
The second day of the two-day special voting was going on smoothly, despite a few disturbances linked to community protests and bad weather. General South Africans will cast their votes across the country on Wednesday.
– African News Agency (ANA)