Saliva, degreaser or methylated spirits, easily removes voters stain, say some voters

08 May 2019 - 21:40 By TimesLIVE
Some are claiming the ink used for the voter's stain could be easily removed.
Some are claiming the ink used for the voter's stain could be easily removed.
Image: @MichAtagana via Twitter

A few drops of saliva, a wet cloth, some methylated spirits or even a degreaser.

That is what some voters claim to have used to remove the voter's stain off their thumbs shortly after casting their votes on Tuesday.

Many were responding to a video posted by United Democratic Movement leader, Bantu Holomisa in which a supposed voter demonstrated on camera how they had removed the ink.

“I just voted  today but I can clean this thumb with only this product which is called degreaser. I want to show you how free and not fair is these elections. I would really urge all South Africans and political parties to lodge an urgent query,” he says, as he demonstrates.

The man uses a cloth dipped in the degreaser and proceeds to rub it onto his inked finger and within moments, the voter's stain is seen fading.

“It goes out immediately,” the man is heard saying.

“I can go to any voting station and vote again,” he adds.

The Electoral Commission did not deny that some of the ink used could be easily removed but simply moved to remind voters that it was illegal to do so.

“We wish to remind all voters that any attempt to undermine the integrity of the #SAElections2019 election process – including remove the ink mark and voting more than once – constitutes electoral fraud and is punishable by up to 10 years in jail,” the IEC said.

The commission said marking the finger was just one method it used to ensure that voters only cast their vote once.

They said the devices used to scan voters IDs marked the time and venue that a person voted.

“We are going to download that scanner. We are going to merge that scanner with the voters' roll and we will know that the people on that scanner in that voting station and the number of voters in that voting station,” the commission said.

While one could go to another voting station once they had removed their ink, the IEC said its systems would be able to pick this up and that this would eventually result in prosecution.

Some took to social media to prove that it was indeed possible for one person to vote twice.