Next year, South Africans will be able to choose their leaders again at polling stations across the country. If you are a registered voter, you can use your right to vote for the political party and leaders you want to see in government. So, make sure you are ready for the elections by registering as a voter.
The 2009 general elections will take place between mid April and July next year. In the past, a number of people could not vote because their names were not registered on the National Common Voters' Roll.
To be able to vote, you have to be registered in the voting district where you live.
To register as a voter, you must be a South African citizen and you have to be 16 years or older. You must also have a green bar-coded identity document (ID).
Once you have registered and your details have been checked in the Population Register, your name will be placed on the voters' roll.
How to register
If your name is not on the voters' roll yet, you can register any time during business hours at your local office of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).
You can also go to a voting station in the voting district where you live during the general voter registration period. Remember to take your ID with you.
When registering you will have to complete an application form. The registration officer will put a sticker in your ID book with your registration number on it. This is proof that you have applied for registration. It is only then that your application will be processed.
Send an sms
You can now also register by sending an sms message from your cell phone. Just enter your ID number and send it to 32810. You will get an sms reply informing you whether you are registered or not.
Remember, registration is free - you don't have to pay anything before you can vote. So, use your democratic right and register now.
- Muzi Mkhwanazi