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Elections 2021: Have a question about voting? We’ve got you covered …


Oct 29, 2021

South Africans head to the polls on Monday 1 November 2021 in what is likely to be the most hotly contested Local Government Elections in a long time

For many, the experience of casting a ballot can be confusing. Are you registered, and does it matter where you registered? Do you qualify for a special vote? Can you vote if you’re out of the country? So many questions.


We’ve tried to answer at least some of the questions you may have about Election Day; what to do and what not to do. We hope you find this helpful.

Can I vote if I turn 18 on election day?

Yes, all South African citizens over the age of 18 with a valid ID, who have registered, will be allowed to vote.

Can I vote if I turn 18 soon AFTER election day?

No. You must be 18 years old on or before election day. NO exceptions.

Can I vote if I will be out of town or in another province on election day?

For Municipal Elections and By-Elections you must vote at the voting station you are registered at. For National Elections, voting outside of your voting district IS allowed.

Can I vote if I can’t get to my voting station on Election Day?

You may apply for a special vote if you can’t travel to your voting station because you are physically infirm, disabled, or pregnant. You can also apply for a special vote if you can’t vote at your voting station on election day. This applies mostly to essential workers like police, emergency services, election volunteers, and other elections officials.

Can I vote if I registered but am now in prison?

Yes, as long as you have your valid, green, bar-coded ID and you are registered to vote.

Can I vote if I registered but have lost my ID with the sticker in it?

Yes, you may get a Temporary Identity Certificate (TIC) that will be valid on election day. You can apply for your TIC at the Department of Home Affairs. BUT you must be on the voters’ roll to vote.

Can I vote if I will be out of the country on Election Day?

Yes, if you are registered to vote, and are a South African citizen with a valid ID, you may apply for a special vote.

Can I vote if I’m a South African citizen but no longer live in SA?

If you’re a South African citizen and you registered as a voter in SA, you can apply for a special vote for national and provincial elections.

Can I vote if I’m bedridden?

Yes, you may apply for a special vote.

Can I vote if I’ve lost my registration sticker?

You will be allowed to vote as long as your name is on the voters’ roll. 

Can I vote if my new ID book has not arrived yet?

Yes, you can vote if you have a Temporary Identity Certificate (TIC) that is valid on Election Day. 

Can I vote on behalf of someone who is unable to get to their voting station?

No, every voter must vote in person at the voting station.

Can I vote with my temporary registration certificate (TRC)?

No, you can only vote with your South African, green, bar-coded ID or a valid Temporary Identity Certificate (TIC).

Can permanent residents vote in the elections?

No, only South African citizens with a green, bar-coded ID book can vote in elections.

I am blind. Can someone help me at the voting station?

You can take anyone who is at least 18 years old and not a party agent with you to the voting station to help you cast your vote. You can also ask the presiding officer at the voting station to help you and/or provide you with a voting aid known as a universal ballot template (UBT).

I have registered, but I don’t want to vote. Will anything happen to me if I don’t vote?

No, voting is not compulsory in SA, however voting is an important civic duty and we encourage all South Africans to participate.

I’m in the SANDF/SAPS and on duty on Election Day. When will I vote?

If you’re a member of the SANDF or SAPS and are on duty on Election Day for National and Provincial elections, you can apply for a special vote. 

Will election day be a public holiday?

Yes, the president has proclaimed that Monday 1 November 2021 will be a public holiday.

Source: elections.org.za

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