Chief Electoral Office, Sy Mamabolo, have cleared the air that the government's vaccination campaign and programs is not linked to the voters registration and the voting exercises. He made it known that anyone who is eligible to vote can register to vote, whether that person is vaccinated or not. The officer was quoted as saying, “Vaccination is not linked to your right to vote. We are implementing non-pharmaceutical interventions at the voting stations, it is not mandatory for you to be vaccinated to register to vote,”. This is to clear the air about the rumour making round in the country and on social media that only people who have been vaccinated and have presented their vaccines' passport will be allowed to register and vote. It was mandatory that the Electoral body give the full details of the requirements.
Debunking the unfounded rumours, the Chief Electoral Office, SY Mamabolo made it known that there is no link between the voting exercise, voters registration and government programs on mass vaccination. While reinstating that vaccination is indeed important, the Electoral chief made it known that election registration and vaccination are two different things. Therefore, those who have not registered for voting for fear that they would not be allowed to vote because they are not vaccinated have been asked to go and get registered so that they can exercise their social obligations of voting. Those who are saying that no vaccination, no voting are mere mischief-makers who are out to tarnish the good image of the South African government who have hitherto that vaccination is a personal choice and not a forced action. Recall that president Cyril Ramaphosa have said in February that no one will be forced to take or accept the coronavirus vaccine. However, many South Africans believe that the recent statement made by the president about vaccine passport is a deviation from his earlier statements.
As the republic of South Africa prepares to go to the polls in November, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has stated categorically that all South Africans eligible to vote should register to cast their votes, whether they were vaccinated or unvaccinated. This recent statement is indeed a big relief to the burden of the people. Already, many political parties have begun vigorous campaigns aimed at convincing voters to cast votes for them. This year's local government elections will produce great suspense.
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