By: Nthambeleni Gabara
Pretoria: The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) have printed and distributed 62.8 million ballot papers for May 7 General Elections, IEC Chairperson Pansy Tlakula announced on Monday.
According to Tlakula, 31.4 million are national ballot papers, while 31.5 are provincial ballot papers, adding that the ballot printing required in excess of 500 tons of paper.
“The national ballot paper is the longest yet for an election in South Africa containing 29 contesting parties, this is three more than contested the 2009 General Elections,” she said.
Other materials that have been distributed includes over 220 000 ballot boxes; 412 000 staff ID stickers; 83 000 banners; over 100 000 voting station demarcation tape and almost 60 stationary packs.
“In such packs, we included over 580 000 pens, 116 000 rulers; 2.9 tons of twine, 2.9 kilometre of tape, 4 65 million sheets of note paper; 2.9 tons of rubber bands; over 58 000 permanent markers; 11.7 tons of re-usable rubber putty and almost 3 million paper clips,” she said.
The IEC chairperson was briefing reporters at the Independent Electoral Commission’s (IEC) first press conference for the 2014 General Elections at the Results Operations Centre in Pretoria.
Tlakula said security materials such as 120 000 security stamps to mark ballot papers and over 27 000 tamper-evident tapes for sealing sensitive documents and boxes as well as 118 000 indelible ink pens to mark voters fingers were handled separately from the mainstream of electoral material deliveries.
“We want to remind voters that their ballot papers must be stamped with a security stamp by election officials when they are issued to the voter. All unstamped ballot papers will not be counted,” she said.
The certified voters’ roll for Wednesday elections contains 25.39 million names.
The master voters’ roll which was printed for use in the voting stations on voting involved over 24 000 unique and separate segments of the voters’ roll totalling 1.8 million pages, requiring 8.6 tons of papers.
Tlakula also wished her 218 000 officials the very best for the next few days, further expressing her confidence that they will again live up to the highest reputation of excellence that South Africa and the world have come to expect from them.
SOURCE: SOUTH AFRICAN OFFICIAL NEWS