South African President declares Nov. 1 election date a national holiday

FILE PHOTO: South African President Cyril Ramaphosa speaks at a past event. / AFP

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday declared November 1, the date for local government elections, a public holiday to enable voters to cast their ballots.

The local government polls are held every five years to leaders to sit on the councils that run cities, including responsibility for delivering basic services like water, sanitation and housing.

The elections also determine who will be mayors of major cities.

Political campaigns are on high-gear throughout the country as parties seek the electorate’s favor for their candidates.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, ruling on an African National Congress (ANC) ticket, has urged all eligible persons to take advantage of the November 1 holiday to cast their ballots in the various polling stations across the country.

The president also called o employers to make provision for their employees to exercise their right to vote.

He also called for the adherence to COVID-19 containment protocols to avoid the risk of spreading the virus during the exercise.