How to vote

Once you have made a mark and your ballot paper and have made sure there is a stamp on the back, drop it in the ballot box.

South Africa’s municipal elections will be held on Monday November 1 to elect councils for all district, metropolitan and local municipalities in each of the country’s nine provinces. This will be the sixth municipal elections held in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994.

Municipal elections are held every five years.

To make your vote count, make sure you have the address for the correct voting station for the voting district in which you are registered. If you are not sure where your voting station is, visit www. and click on “I want to”.

Most voting stations are located in community buildings like local schools, churches or community centres.

An election official will meet you at the entrance of the voting station.

He or she will check that you have a valid identification document, such as a green barcoded ID book, a smart-card ID, or a temporary ID certificate. They will scan this document and present you with a slip that confirms that you are a registered voter.

The official will also tell you when it is your turn to enter the station and will advise where to go once inside the voting station.

Inside you will proceed to the voters-roll table where election officials will take your ID document and check for your name and identity number on the segment of the national common voters roll for that voting district.

Your name will then be crossed off so you can only vote once.

An election official will then ink your left thumbnail. This is a special ink that will not wash off your nail for several days. This ink mark will show everyone that you have participated in the election.

An election official will then hand you your ballot papers – which they will tear off a pad. Each ballot paper has a unique number and you must make sure that there is a stamp at the back of your ballot papers to verify that they were issued to you on that election day.

For national and provincial elections voters generally receive two ballot papers (one for the national and one for the provincial election). For municipal elections, voters in metros and local councils receive two ballot papers (one for a ward councillor and one for a political party as part of the proportional representation (PR) section of the election. Voters in areas that form part of a district council receive a third ballot paper for the district council election.

Your green ID book, if that was your identification document, will then be stamped by an election official to show that you participated in the election.

You will then be directed to an empty voting booth. Here you will place your X in the box next to the political party and/or candidate of your choice.

To avoid a spoilt ballot, ensure that you make only one mark on each ballot paper and that your mark is clear.

If you make a mistake, call an election official and they will provide you with a new ballot paper. When you are finished, fold your ballot papers in half and leave the voting booth.

Just a reminder – you are not allowed to photograph your marked ballot paper, so no selfies.

An election official stationed at the ballot box will check that there is a stamp at the back of each of your ballots. Having made your mark, drop your completed ballot paper through the slot in the top of the ballot box.

After casting your vote, you will then be directed to the exit.