gauteng by-elections

Gauteng by-elections: Naledi locals block voting [video]

Posted by Andile Sicetsha

Gauteng has seen the first indication of a nationwide revolt against the by-elections that are taking place on Wednesday.

Naledi residents halt voting in Gauteng by-elections

On the cards are 107 council seats that will be hotly contested in all nine provinces. The electoral process has, however, been hampered by protest action.

According to reports from eNCA, more than 90 wards in 54 municipalities have stated their intention to boycott the by-elections for reasons related to poor service delivery.

In Naledi, Soweto, already, disgruntled residents have halted all voting in the area.

A heavy presence of law enforcement was seen in the Sowetan township, on Wednesday morning, as large crowds gathered to chase election officials away from designated voting stations.

Poor service delivery trumps as reason behind protests

The police have, thus far, not intervened with the protests. Rather, residents were offered a platform to explain to authorities the motivation behind the picketing.

A woman clad in ANC regalia spoke passionately to a metro police official about the plight faced by community members under the administration of the local government.

Living without access to basic needs like water and electricity was high on the list of reasons behind the protests in Naledi.

14 seats up for grabs in Gauteng by-elections

The community has maintained that they, much like other wards in other parts of the country, will not partake in the electoral process.

They have asked officials to make use of voting stations in other communities. But, until action is taken by the ruling government in addressing the civic needs of the people, the by-elections will not be recognised by the township.

In Gauteng, 14 seats are up from grabs, with the ANC caught in a ballot war with the official opposition, the DA, as well as the dark horse of the contest, the EFF.

More on this to come when more updates are received.

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