By-election at Ncuncuni off to slow start

28 Mar 2018 17:20pm
NCUNCUNI, 28 MAR (NAMPA) – Most of the polling stations in the Ncuncuni Constituency by-election opened on time, but voter turnout was slow at many stations.
Swapo’s Ritha Sindjanga and the All People’s Party’s Paulus Mangundu are contesting the regional councillor position left vacant after the death of Rosa Kavara earlier this year.
There are 12 polling stations around the constituency that will close at 21h00.
Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) presiding officer Phillip Mahongo at the Ncuncuni Primary School told Nampa Wednesday around 11h30 that voters were trickling in one by one.
At that point, 80 voters had been registered at the polling station.
No challenges were encountered.
The Frankhilde Nanzamba polling station also opened on time, but experienced a few problems such as villagers wanting to vote on behalf of their elders.
The presiding officer there, Theresia Kudumo said residents brought voter cards belonging to their elders to vote on their behalf as the villages are situated far from the polling stations and it is difficult for the elderly people to walk that far.
“We have been sending them back, but it is actually a pity,” Kudumo said.
Another problem experienced has been address changes.
According to the officer, many of the elderly voters registered in the Rundu Constituency, but moved back to their villages in the Ncuncuni Constituency.
In these cases, people were turned away as well as they were not registered voters of the constituency.
Kudumo said the voter turnout there has also been slow, but that this could be because many people spend their mornings tending to their crops.
More than 60 voters had registered at the Frankhilde Nanzamba polling station when Nampa spoke to Kudumo.
She said she is hopeful that the voter turnout would improve during the course of the day.
The ECN earlier this week indicated that they are expecting close to 5 040 registered voters to turn up on voting day.
The final result verification will take place at the Ncaute police station and the results are expected to be announced around midnight on Wednesday.