Real Talk

Cosmopolitan (South Africa) - - CONTENTS -

Elec­tion fever is rag­ing. Land ex­pro­pri­a­tion, zero-per­cent VAT on san­i­tary prod­ucts, ac­cess to af­ford­able ed­u­ca­tion, safe and le­gal abor­tion, and the pro­tec­tion of sex­ual-as­sault sur­vivors are just some of the press­ing is­sues in need of sound lead­er­ship and strat­egy. This year’s na­tional elec­tion is a big mo­ment for South Africans to pivot the state of af­fairs.

As­tudy pub­lished in 2016 by the In­sti­tute for Se­cu­rity Stud­ies re­vealed that voter reg­is­tra­tion among young peo­ple was the low­est of all age de­mo­graph­ics in South Africa. While you may feel dis­il­lu­sioned by the high lev­els of cor­rup­tion that plague our gov­ern­ment, you have the power to fight Mil­len­nial ap­a­thy. Re­mem­ber, no ac­tion means no rep­re­sen­ta­tion. Will your vote help change all that? Hell, yes!

Ac­cord­ing to the In­de­pen­dent Elec­toral Com­mis­sion of South Africa, 490 520 vot­ers reg­is­tered for the first time in March 2018. In ad­di­tion, ‘more than 400 000 (or 82%) were un­der the age of 30 and ap­prox­i­mately 54% were women’. You have the power to de­mand more from your lead­ers, such as more par­ity on the gen­der pay gap and more ac­count­abil­ity for re­pro­duc­tive rights.

This is what you need to know about reg­is­tra­tion week­end:

• Fi­nal vot­ing reg­is­tra­tion is set to take place from 26 to 27 Jan­uary 2019

• SA’s 22 932 vot­ing sta­tions will be open from 8am to 5pm. Find your lo­cal sta­tion at Maps.elec­tions.org.za

• Take your ID book, smart-card ID or tem­po­rary ID cer­tifi­cate when you regis­ter in your vot­ing dis­trict

• Only those who are 18 years old or older can vote

Not sure if you’re reg­is­tered al­ready? Here’s how to check:

• Send an SMS with your ID num­ber to 32810 (R1 per SMS)

• Down­load the IEC mo­bile app and en­ter your ID num­ber

• Visit Elec­tions.org.za to find out more about the sta­tus of your reg­is­tra­tion

• Call the IEC hot­line (0800 118 000) to speak to a con­sul­tant The na­tional elec­tions are set to take place in May 2019. Get your squad to­gether and have a pre-vote brunch party to chat pol­icy and the is­sues that mat­ter to you. Use this fi­nal reg­is­tra­tion week­end to make your voice heard. Your voice mat­ters – use it.

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