According to the electoral commission, 55% of the registered voters are women – 10% more than that of men

More women than men are likely to hit the polls at this year’s elections on Wednesday, May 8, according to the Independent Electoral Commission’s (IEC) registration statistics.

According to the IEC, of the close to 27 million registered voters, 55% of these are women. Lisa Vetten, a Mellon doctoral fellow from the Wits City Institute, said the gender demographics of the country could have contributed to the higher women registered voter statistics. “Part of this difference is accounted for by the fact that there are more women in the population than men,” she said.

For registered voters between the ages of 18 and 30, there are over 3 million voters while the men almost hit the 2,6 million mark.

Zenande Makina, a 24-year-old presenter at VoW FM, said she felt obligated to vote. “I also don’t want to be a part of South Africans who feel they can’t make a difference,” she said, adding that women live in an unequal society.

“We are trying to vote to make the playing field equal,” Makina said.

Morapedi Pitsoane, Makina’s 22-year-old co-presenter at VoW FM, echoed her sentiments. “I think women have been marginalised and are fighting back, but their voices also need to be heard in government,” he said.

Khayelihle Mncunu, a 29-year-old taxi driver who operates on Bree Taxi Rank routes, said he has not registered to vote because he was not given the day off by his employer. “I am still young,” he said, adding that he can always vote in the coming elections.

 

FEATURED IMAGE: A voting official validates a voter’s ID before she goes into vote at the Old Mutual Sports Hall. Photo: Ntombi Mkandhla

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