After all the bitching about the expat vote, the bitching about the process, and the conspiracy theories, I thought I’d tell you a little about my experience today here in London. As soon as the Constitutional Court decision came through, I sent off my & hubby’s application to vote abroad. I got an e-mail confirming receipt, and when I checked our status on the IEC website it was all in order – we were registered in Port Elizabeth and approved to vote in London. This afternoon I got to South Africa House on Trafalgar Square clutching my VEC 1 form, passport and ID book. Unlike this morning’s 2-hour queues, we only had a 30 minute wait but the 5-deep queue still snaked all the way along the front of the building. HIV Positive & the DA were walking around handing out literature and talking to people and there were loads of free SA newspapers being given out – it was a relaxed and happy atmosphere, rather like the 1994 election I thought – just with more red busses and pigeons!
Once inside, everything was very efficient and everyone was very friendly – plus we got a peek at the very lovely interior of the Sir Herbert Baker building and its Pierneef paintings. Bonus. We got an envelope on which we had to write our names & voting district, then we got the ballot paper and a second blank envelope (read about this system here). We were checked against the voters’ roll and had hour thumbs marked, and then we voted. I was tempted to seal my ballot paper with a kiss – it was that kind of shivers-down-the-spine moment.
This is one South African who is not about to give up lightly the right that so many of my countrymen fought and died for, no matter where I happen to be.
- 2008 – the year for voter education
- REGISTER and then VOTE. It’s your right.
- Voting blind – Monopoly International
- Vote SA Rocks – ‘Cause SA Rocks, Ekse!!
- 17 000 000 votes cast for Idols 2007
Popularity: 9% [?]