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How to vote abroad in the South African 2019 National Elections

By April 26, 2019October 12th, 2023FinGlobal

How to vote abroad in the South African 2019 National Elections

April 26, 2019

The South African 2019 National Elections are almost here – and if you’re living abroad you have the chance to vote in the South African elections. The 2019 elections are being heralded as one of the most important elections in South Africa since 1994, so it’s important you have the chance to influence its outcome! The good news is that ALL South Africans living abroad can vote. If you are voting abroad, your vote is a “Special Vote”. To find out more about how to cast your “Special Vote”, read on.


Exercise your constitutional right

According to Section 19 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (Act 108 of 1996), all South Africans living abroad have the right to vote in the national elections.


Where to vote

As a South African living abroad, you can only vote at South African embassies, consulates and high commissions.


Make sure you are registered

All South African residents MUST register at their nearest South African embassy, high commission or consulate-general in order to vote. It is NOT possible to register or vote at honorary consulates. You can register at your nearest embassy, high commission or consulate general during normal working hours. In order to register, you must take both your green, bar-coded SA ID book or your Smartcard ID AND your South African passport. Both these documents must be originals and valid and no other ID documents will be accepted.


What if your maiden name still appears?

You don’t need to worry if your maiden name still appears on either your passport or your South African ID book or smart ID. All that is needed is your ID number, which is then checked against the National Population Register (NPR).


What if you are already registered in South Africa?

If you are already registered to vote in South Africa, you don’t need to register again to vote, but you will have had to complete the VEC 10 form by midnight on the 13th of March 2019 so that the IEC is aware that you tend to vote abroad. If you have submitted your VEC 10 form online, you can find out more about the status of it here


How to cast your “Special Vote”

As a South African voting abroad, your vote is regarded as a “Special Vote”. In order to vote abroad you must present your voting confirmation received from the IEC together with your current valid South African ID book and passport when you attend your nearest consulate or Embassy in order to cast your “Special Vote”.


Don’t miss the date!

As an overseas voter your date to vote in the 2019 Elections will be Saturday 27 April. This date has been shifted to the weekend to allow any working expats greater flexibility with their schedules. The polls will be open for a 14-hour period from 7.00 – 21.00 and you can cast your vote between these hours.



If you are a South African living abroad and would like to know more about how you can maximise your finances through financial emigration, accessing your South African retirement annuity and our tailor-made tax solutions for South Africans around the world, contact FinGlobal today.

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