Move will cost ANC hundreds of thousands of votes, say analysts

2013-12-21 00:00

THE withdrawal of Numsa’s support could cost the ANC hundreds of thousands of votes in next year’s election.

The National Metalworkers Union of SA (Numsa) announced after its special national congress in Boksburg that it would not get involved in the ANC’s campaign or support it financially.

In January this year, Numsa made a R460 000 contribution to the ANC and was expected to contribute at least 15% more next year.

The biggest loss will be in credibility and the loss of the vocal support of Numsa officebearers during the election campaign.

Political analyst Piet Croucamp said the ANC could now expect to get about 61% support in next year’s election, down from 65,4% previously.

“I expect that Numsa supporters will largely stay away on polling day,” Croucamp said. “The ANC’s problem is not the opposition, but the stayaway vote.”

Wits rector Professor Adam Habib said he also expects the ANC to poll in the low 60s.

“If it was to get less than 52% of the vote, President Jacob Zuma would have to pack his bags,” he said.

“Society is getting angrier and angrier about corruption,” Habib said.

“People are angry about the impunity of our president,” he added.

This sentiment was backed up by Numsa delegates at the congress yesterday.

“I’m definitely not going to vote for the ANC. We can’t even tell between the ANC and the DA. Why should we vote for the ANC if they are anti-working class?” said Lesely Seloane of Sebokeng.

Vuyanki Ntutu, from the Eastern Cape, said Numsa’s decision would definitely make a difference in how people vote. “The ANC is inclined to forget the working class. We decided it stops here,” he said.

Nomangezi Vuku, also from the Eastern Cape, said she is very happy. “The president does nothing for us. I’m very proud of what we decided,” she said.

Njabulo Dube, from KwaZulu-Natal, said he’s not going to vote for the ANC, “I’m not going to vote with my heart, but with my moral compass.”

Numsa general secretary Irvin Jimsaid he can’t ask people to vote for the ANC again.

“During the 2008 election I was deployed in the PE area. I visited people in squatter camps and RDP houses and persuaded them to go and vote. Some of them were bitterly, bitterly poor. I did my best to persuade them to vote and made promises to them,” he said.

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