Queen Elizabeth congratulates SA

Today marks the eve of South Africa’s 20 Years of Democracy celebration.

FILE: The queen says she and her family have enjoyed a special significant relationship with this country over the years.

JOHANNESBURG - Britain's Queen Elizabeth has congratulated South Africa on reaching 20 years of democracy.

Tomorrow marks exactly twenty years since the first democratic elections took place in South Africa, paving the way for a new constitution for this country.

The queen says she and her family have enjoyed a special significant relationship with this country over the years.

The British High Commission's Isabel Potgieter says, "She also mentions her wishes for happiness, security and prosperity for the people of South Africa in the next 20 years and beyond."

Meanwhile millions of 18-year-old South Africans eligible to vote for the first time in the 7 May general elections EWN spoke to a few so-called born frees to find out whether they would be making their mark at the polls.

19-year-old student Bongani Maselela says some political parties need to demonstrate their performance in order for him to vote for them.

"I definitely will be voting, in terms of parties that speak to me from an ideological view, there are some parties I relate to, but in terms of performance, we need to decide whether these parties are worth voting for or not."

18-year-old Daniel Tasker says he's been persuaded to vote for the Democratic Alliance (DA).

"The Western Cape is quite a well-run province, so I'll probably give the DA a chance."

Timbelani Ndaba is studying race relations and is adamant he will not be voting.

"I just have one problem, with everything in South Africa at the moment, although the apartheid regime is over, I think everything runs because of race."

Law student Sibonakaliso Mgnene believes no political party deserves to run the country and therefore he will not be voting.

"I do not feel there is any party equipped to run the country effectively, so I don't want to waste my vote or spoil my vote because I don't see the purpose in that."

20-year-old Andrea Green Thompson from Wits University in Joburg explains why she will be voting.

"I have a party I'm intending to vote for but it might change. I think this might be the year the ANC is put out of power. I think the parties are missing the point of democracy at the moment."

Kitomeitse Molefe, who says he's grateful he didn't grow up in apartheid elaborates on what being a born free means to her.

"I think we are privileged to be born frees because we didn't experience the injustices that happened during apartheid, we only learn about them through books and history. Another privilege of being a born free, anyone can vote regardless of race."