DA push for extra overseas voting stations

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The party aims to register 200,000 expat voters.

South Africans residing abroad will now have the opportunity to register online for the first time, marking a significant shift from the previous process that required physical visits to South African diplomatic missions, often located far from their places of residence. In 2019, this traditional approach resulted in just 31,000 registrations. Online registration is set to begin on October 24, 2023 for the country’s crucial 2024 national and provincial elections. In an interview with BizNews, the DA Abroad, Ludré Stevens described the new rules as ‘game-changing.’ The party is now on a mission to register 200,000 South Africans living abroad for the 2024 elections. Additionally, the DA  is actively pressuring the Department of International Relations and Cooperation to designate 13 additional voting stations in areas with a substantial South African expatriate population, including Perth, Sydney, Brisbane, Wellington, Austin, Edinburgh, and Belfast. Stevens emphasised the importance of South Africans abroad making use of these new registration rules, as this could be the first domino in prompting further changes. The party’s primary objective, he said, is to secure the election of two Members of Parliament through overseas votes, a critical potential outcome if coalitions become prevalent after the 2024 elections.  – Linda van Tilburg

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