Police have arrested scores of suspects attempting to defraud polling stations after removing ink on their thumps to cast votes for the second time.
Police Spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo confirmed they arrested 20 suspects for contravening Section 88 (d) of the Electoral Act — trying to cast more votes.
“We arrested 19 suspects in KwaZulu-Natal including sixteen in Danhauser, two in Hluhluwe and one in Port Shepstone. Police arrested another suspect in Douglasdale, Gauteng,” said Naidoo.
The suspects will appear in various courts in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng province.
Naidoo said police have arrested another suspect in Limpopo on Tuesday night.
Arnold Mulaudzi appeared in the Vuwani Magistrate’s Court on Thursday facing on charges of contravening Section 87(1)(a) par. 2 & 3 of the Electoral Act 73 of 1998.
Malaudzi is out on R5000 bail.
The court has postponed the case to June 3, 2019 pending further investigation.
“These arrests are indicative that the security features used by the Independent Electoral Commission to prevent “double voting” from taking place has been effective,” said Naidoo.
The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) said they carry out the four layers of security to protect the integrity of the election process.
Naidoo said people bragging on social media having cast “double votes” must realise it’s transgression of the Electoral Act, if not fraud or both.
“We have also noted various video clips and messages on social media, most were decisively dealt with,” added Naidoo.
In one case IEC officials were fired while “operating” from the back of a bakkie.
Naidoo said they clarified boxes found on the side of a road which passerby’s assumed they were carrying voting material, adding that in other cases people are being charged.
“While we appreciate the overwhelming support by the nation throughout the voting process, we want to appeal to everyone engaging in celebrations to do so responsibly,” said Naidoo.