Observers

Observers, both domestic and international, play a crucial role in ensuring that the elections are transparent, free and fair, and that the outcome is accepted by voters, political parties and candidates.

According to the United Nations, election observation is a valuable tool for improving the quality of elections, as:

“Observers help build public confidence in the honesty of electoral processes. Observation can help promote and protect the civil and political rights of participants in elections. It can lead to the correction of errors or weak practices, even while an election process is still under way. It can deter manipulation and fraud, or expose such problems if they do occur. When observers issue positive reports, it builds trust in the democratic process and enhances the legitimacy of the governments that emerge from elections.”

International observers often have vast experience of elections in various parts of the world and are able to give an election management body like the Electoral Commission invaluable advice and support.

What they do

Observers keep an eye on the voting process at voting stations, the counting of votes, and the final counting, determination and declaration of results.

Regulations

View the rules for accreditation, sample application form, sample certificate of accreditation, and code of conduct at regulations on the accreditation of observers (PDF 109.65 KB). 

How to apply

Applications for organisations to observe the 2019 National and Provincial Elections are now open.
Please download the application for accreditation and return completed forms to the Electoral Commission by no later than 17:00 on 5 December 2018 via:

Please note that election observation is a voluntary activity with no remuneration. Only ORGANISATIONS need apply.

Please direct all enquiries to observers@elections.org.za.