Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba. Picture: MARTIN RHODES
Malusi Gigaba. Picture: MARTIN RHODES

MORE than 270,000 South Africans have smart cards and ID books waiting for them at home affairs, Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba said on Friday.

He called on these people to collect them, so they could register to vote this weekend for the local government elections. The department’s offices would be open over the weekend.

This number was in addition to the country’s 9-million eligible voters who were not registered to vote. The Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) on Thursday said that of that number, they hoped to get 1-million to register over the weekend.

Mr Gigaba and Tshwane mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa handed out pamphlets and called on people to register, during a visit to Pretoria Station.

"The youth are very important because they are the future of the country. Their future is in their hands and they have to build it themselves and not inherit one which they don’t know what it took to achieve," Mr Gigaba said.

Mr Ramokgopa said it was important to vote as many had sacrificed their lives to achieve this right.

"It is our collective civic duty to ensure we strengthen the foundation of democracy," he said.

Some people at the station said they were registered while others were not.

"Voting allows us the opportunity to shape our future. We all need to go out in our numbers to make a cross and have a say in what happens in our country," said Matlou Mokone.

Thabang Mahlangu was not registered and said he would not vote as those elected to lead did not listen to the masses.

"Politicians don’t work for us but only care about themselves. By voting, we are just giving them more power to enrich themselves," he said.

News24