Pretoria – Now that the 2014 national and provincial election campaigns are over, the focus will inevitably shift to the victor, the ANC, and its internal policies, according to political analyst Steven Friedman.
“The interesting political action over the next couple of years is going to be within the ANC rather than outside the ANC,” Friedman told News24 at the IEC’s national results operations centre in Pretoria.
“The ANC has some very serious challenges,” he added. “There’s a lot of balancing to be done.”
These challenges include balancing regional factions, especially relating to the positions of those who lost out at the last ANC congress, and the issue of regional ballots.
According to Friedman KwaZulu-Natal is the biggest ANC province, and they may feel that this entitles them to a say in the next president, but other provinces may disagree.
“The obvious issue that the ANC have to worry about is that the problem in Cosatu is obviously not permanently solved, and the ANC could be facing a challenge from a labour party or a worker’s party within the next five years. It’s going to be difficult,” warned Friedman.
“The election does show that the ANC retains the support of a majority of voters, but it doesn’t mean that things will be plain sailing in the ANC, I think there will be a lot of turmoil in the ANC family within the next two to three years.”
Friedman also said it was not guaranteed that President Jacob Zuma would be president for the next five years, but speculated that this not necessarily be because the ANC would decide he should go, but would be more to do with factional politics, adding that the controversy surrounding the upgrade to his Nkandla residence could be used against him in factional politics.
Check out the party results maps here.