South Africa’s record 2024 election – all the stats you need to know

 ·13 Mar 2024

There are a record 27.69 million people registered to vote in the 2024 general elections – a nearly one million person jump in the voters roll since the 2019 elections.

“Since the voters’ roll was compiled for the first time ahead of the 1999 National and Provincial Elections, it has shown steady growth of over 35% and contains the highest number of registered voters, recording an increase of 9.6 million voters since the 1999 general elections,” said Chief Electoral Officer at the Electoral Commission (IEC), Sy Mamabolo. 

Important to note is that only the people who are on the voters roll certified by the IEC on 12 March will be able to vote on 29 May.

“It is impossible to vote in that election if you have not applied for registration before [the close of the voters roll],” said the IEC.

With polls predicting that this year’s National and Provincial elections will be more hotly contested than ever before, the ball firmly lands in the court of registered voters as they head to one of the 23,292 voting stations that will be open on May 29.

The two most populous provinces in South Africa, Gauteng and KwaZulu Natal, which together account for 44.3% of the total number of potential voters for the 2024 elections – approximately 12.28 million people.

This is followed by the Eastern and Western Cape, respectively.

The city with the most registered voters is Johannesburg in Gauteng, with over 2.348 million on the roll – nearly four times that of the entire Northern Cape.

Like in previous years, more women have registered to vote. This is reflected in every age category, with the total seeing 55.24% of registered voters being women, while 44.76% are men.

The biggest voting blocs are those between the ages of 30 – 39 (24.6%) and 40 – 49 (21.53%).

Looking at young voters (18 – 39 years), this age band accounts for 42% (or 11. 7 million) of voters on the roll.

The Chief Electoral Officer has said that the cities with the highest voter registration outside of South Africa included London, England, with 19,525, The Hague in the Netherlands at 5,574 and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, with 2,574.

“The introduction of the online self-service voter registration modality has contributed to the increased rate of registration by younger voters in the country, as well as by citizens who are resident outside of the Republic,” said Mamabolo.

It is important to note that while the 27.72 million registered voters is record-breaking, far from all are expected to show up to the polls due to a consistent decline noted in South African voter turnout, as well as a large number of eligible voters are not registered.

It is estimated that South Africa has an eligible voter population of over 41 million – meaning more than 13 million eligible voters have not registered to take part in the elections.

Read: Over 13 million eligible voters in South Africa not registered for the 2024 elections

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