Prisoners register to vote

Voter registration for inmates has opened at over 200 prisons around the country.

Voter registration for inmates has opened at over 200 prisons around the country.

JOHANNESBURG - Voter registration ahead of this year's general election will kick off today in more than 200 of the country's prisons, but political parties won't be able to address the inmates to secure their votes.

There are about 150,000 people currently serving jail terms or awaiting sentencing.

These people will have an opportunity to register to cast their ballot over the next five days.

The Department of Correctional Services Logan Maistry said, "We've been working on the logistics to ensure that the registration will go as smoothly as possible and we're confident we'll be able to provide support to the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC)."

At the same time, the IEC in the Western Cape says thousands of prison inmates will be able to register to vote from this morning, provided they have a valid Identification Document.

The commission is sending four teams of electoral officials to Pollsmoor Prison today.

The IEC's Cape Town head, Courtney Sampson, says offenders will be able to register today, on Thursday and on Friday.

"Some of the offenders don't have IDs. We were told by people in Correctional Services that there's a preference for people not to take IDs into correctional centres."