Draft Animal By-Law Cape Town South Africa & Elections

19 Feb

It is an election year and we go to the polls in April. It will be interesting to see how the new draft will pander to targeted voters.

Our Animal By-Law workshops have been predominantly white affairs. Well, almost exclusively so with me and one other not being white in one such session and the technicians also not being white in another and a third being kind of equally black and white but it was arranged by us blacks and very few whites came: they arranged something else- a Robben Island Bunny Kill Protest although I actually assist with activities on that project. So there we are- still struggling with social integration but rainbows are signs of hope and we are hopeful of substantial change for this Rainbow Nation.

Election year: I do duty at a voter registration site and usually also at the polling station. The nation cries out against crime but many throw tantrums when they are reqyuired to meet the laws pertaining to registration. It’s funnybecause in my experience  it is easier in the black areas to send potential voters off to their correct registation point than in the historically white areas. Here they throw fits of anger and make sharp remarks. Perhaps because registration and polling site staff are usually black volunteers working anything from 12 to 20 hrs straight including counting the votes for ‘lunch money’ that still gets taxed even though mostly we are unemployed. One does it because one believes in growing our fragile and hard won democracy.

Any way these people come along and gets angry because after having been voters all their lives they do not know where their registration l polling stations are. They do not know that they can register at the municipal offices throughout the year except for that two months before and after the election date. So not having registered for the preceding five years  nor having properly confirmed where they should register or vote they are cross with us…

And they want us to bend the laws for them: to risk being reported by party agents for breaking the election laws and ending up in court. They do not even know that real laws with real consequences are in force. They will decide who governs. They will be annoyed with corrupt public officials and politicians but they sure have a hard time steering clear of corruptions when they step into a registration site.

Like some one said: they know how many voters reside in an area and if one can flood another area whee your support is low with your voters and get them registered there then you begin to balance out your chances. No, obviously I am not talking about ANC voters here. Like I said, these people and their parents, their great grandparents and their great-great grandparents have been voters all their lives. One way or another they know what is to be known about voting…

Lets see how the Animal Draft By-Law will pander to targeted voters. And I anxiously await voting day when once again I will face the wrath of voters that turn up at the wrong polling station.

Jeanihess Blog South Africa

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