Put your X in the box, and move on. The protocol for voting in the 2019 Elections could not be more simple. But there are always people who end up getting this simple task very, very wrong. It’s not just a handful of voters, either: Thousands of “spoiled ballots” are recorded in every national election, with varying degrees of purpose.
Don’t spoil your vote
Some choose to register a protest vote and intentionally vandalise their ballot paper – need we remind you that some Americans wrote “Harambe” on their sheets in 2016 after the late gorilla was shot in a zoo enclosure to protect a three-year-old child. What a bloody world we live in…
Others, however, accidentally end up getting their vote chalked-off. Whether it’s through sheer carelessness or a genuine lack of knowledge, a mismarked ballot paper can end up muting your own democratic voice. Luckily, the IEC has prepared us all for this, and listed the seven things you should avoid writing next Wednesday:
2019 Elections: What you’re not allowed to write on your ballot paper:
- Any writing across the names of the listed parties
There’s only one place you’re allowed to make your mark, and it’s in the empty box. Don’t get creative…
- Making your cross take up more than one box
Your “X” can only occupy one box, otherwise it can’t be counted. Come on, no “voter-spreading” here please.
- Additional writing with arrows
Keep your comments to yourself, and don’t try and write any additional information about your vote: It will not count.
- Writing words in the box is forbidden in the 2019 Elections
The box is for crossing only! Put an X next to your preferred choice, then get outta there and enjoy the public holiday!
- Marking more than one box on the ballot
You don’t have to “cross out” the parties you don’t want to vote for. One X, one party. That is all.
- Whatever this monstrosity is
Before our heads explode, we’ll say it again. CROSSES ONLY. Any attempt to circle or “fill in” a box is a spoiled ballot.
- Casting a vote for two parties
God may love a trier, but the IEC sure doesn’t: If you are trying to vote for more than one party during the 2019 Elections, none of your votes will count.