We have had a number of enquiries from South Africans based abroad asking how they vote in the upcoming elections. Please see the below which is an extract from the website https://www.elections.org.za/content/For-Voters/How-to-register-and-vote-abroad/ for more information.
Step 1: Register or confirm registration
To be eligible to vote in South African elections, you must be a registered voter. If you are already registered as a voter in South Africa (check your registration status online), you don’t have to re-register abroad. If your registration status indicates that you may need to re-register due to boundary changes, please ignore this as it only applies to voters within South Africa.
If you aren’t registered, you will need to visit your nearest South African embassy, high commission, or consulate-general (it is not possible to register or vote at honorary consulates, liaison offices or any other types of foreign missions) before they close on 7 February 2014 to register. No registration applications can be accepted after 7 February.
- Go to www.dfa.gov.za/foreign/sa_abroad/index.htm, locate your nearest South African embassy, high commission, or consulate and contact them to confirm their operating hours and that they are able to process registrations.
- Take both your green, bar-coded South African ID book, smartcard ID or valid Temporary Identity Certificate (TIC) AND your valid South African passport or valid temporary passport. Strictly no other forms of identification can be accepted.
- The Special Registration Officer will verify that you’re eligible to apply, and you will complete and submit a registration form. You will then be given a receipt as proof of your registration application. This is not proof of registration, but only that you have applied.
- Confirm your registration status online at www.elections.org.za/content/For-voters/My-voter-registration-details at least 14 days after applying. If, after 14 days, the system still lists you as unregistered, please email us at email@example.com with your ID number and details of when and where you submitted your registration application.
Step 2: Notify us of your intention to vote abroad
You have 15 days from the date on which the President proclaims the election date to notify us of your intention to vote abroad, and select the foreign mission at which you intend to vote. To be notified of important dates like this, please follow us on Twitter (www.twitter.com/iecsouthafrica) or Facebook (www.facebook.com/iecsouthafrica).
You can submit a VEC10 even if your registration application hasn’t been processed yet, but you must be a registered voter by the time the voters’ roll is certified (a few days after the President proclaims the election date) in order for your notification to be successfully processed.
- Once the election date has been proclaimed by the President, go to the link “Notify us of your intention to vote abroad (VEC10)” under the For voters > Voting outside South Africa (VEC10) menu item on this website. This link is only available from the proclamation date for a period of 15 days.
- Complete and submit the form online.
- Once we have confirmed that you are eligible to vote, we will send you an email or text message to let you know if and when you can vote at the foreign mission you selected.
The VEC10 form can only be completed and submitted online.
Step 3: Vote
If you submitted your VEC10 form online and received an email or text message from us indicating that you qualify to vote abroad, you will be able to vote at the foreign mission you selected.
- Take your green, bar-coded South African ID book; smartcard ID; or valid Temporary Identity Certificate (TIC) AND your valid South African passport or temporary passport to the foreign mission indicated on the confirmation we sent you via email or text. You can only cast your vote on the specific date (usually 7 days before election day in South Africa) and during the times indicated on your confirmation. Important: Under no circumstances can votes be cast on any other date.
- Your thumbnail is marked with indelible ink.
- Your ID book is stamped.
- You receive the national ballot paper.
- You mark the ballot in secret, place and seal the ballot in the unmarked envelope given to you.
- 6. The unmarked envelope is placed in another envelope that is marked with your name and ID number. The use of two envelopes is to ensure the secrecy of your ballot (the outer envelope is discarded before counting).
- The envelope is placed in a secure ballot box for special votes.
Can I vote before I leave South Africa?
If you live in South Africa and are a registered voter, but will be abroad on the day that voting takes place in South Africa, you may apply for a special vote. A special vote allows you to vote at your voting station in South Africa on the date/s stipulated in the election timetable (published once the President has proclaimed the election date) for special voting in SA (likely to be a day or two before election day).
To apply for a special vote, you can make an appointment at your municipal electoral office. Special votes applications are only accepted during the period specified in the election timetable (published once the President has proclaimed the election date).
Under no circumstances can special votes be cast on any date other than the date/s specified in the election timetable. To be notified of important dates like this, please follow us on Twitter (www.twitter.com/iecsouthafrica) or Facebook (www.facebook.com/iecsouthafrica). For more details, please see special votes.