final election results
IEC says final results will be out on Sunday. Archive photo: Masixole Feni

Home » Why can you only vote where you are registered?

Why can you only vote where you are registered?

According to the IEC people can only cast their votes at the voting station they are registered unless they applied for a Section 24A.

27-05-24 14:36
final election results
IEC says final results will be out on Sunday. Archive photo: Masixole Feni

The Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) has reiterated that people can only cast their vote at the districts where they are registered as per Section 24A.

This comes as the country will hold National and Provincial Elections on Wednesday, 29 May.


As per the IEC, a voter may vote outside of the voting district where registered on voting day, 29 May 2024. However, the voter had to notify the Electoral Commission before voting day during the period specified in the Election Timetable.

“By law, all South African residents must register to vote where they reside, and vote where they are registered. However, in terms of the new Electoral Amendment Act, Section 24A, a voter may vote outside of their voting district in-country, but ONLY if they notified the Electoral Commission (IEC) in advance during the timeframe specified in the Election Timetable, that is, by Friday, 17 May, 23:59, indicating at which voting district they intend to vote,” the IEC said.

Furthermore, reiterated that if you did not submit a Section 24A notification to the Electoral Commission by the deadline mentioned above, then you will not be able to vote outside of your voting district at another voting station on Wednesday, 29 May.

“You will unfortunately only be able to vote at the voting district and station at which you are registered,” the Commission said.


There will be three ballot papers a voter will get on voting day:

  • National Compensatory ballot -This ballot is the same across the entire country. It features political parties only, contesting for seats in the National Assembly.
  • National Regional ballot – This one is specific to your voting region and includes candidates running for the National Assembly who represent your area.
  • Provincial Legislature ballot – This ballot is also unique to one’s province and includes parties and independent candidates competing for seats in the provincial legislature.

In addition, the Commission said its decision the design of the ballot papers will be underpinned by the following identifiers:

  • Full registered name of the party
  • Registered abbreviated name of the party
  • The registered emblem or symbol of the party
  • The photograph of the registered party leader

Lastly, in respect of independent candidate, the IEC said ballot papers will have;

  • The name of the independent;
  • The photograph bearing the face of the independent and
  • The word “independent”
Section 24A
If you did not apply for a Section 24A vote, you will not be able to vote outside your district. Image: SA Gov News