Voter turnout soars in Cape Town
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Cape Town - Voter turnout in the municipal elections in Cape Town stood at 67% on Thursday after about half the wards in the metro were counted, buoying Democratic Alliance hopes for a clean sweep in the city.
The party, which formed coalitions with smaller parties to gain control of the city after the 2006 local polls, said turnout in its middle and upper class strongholds had surpassed all expectations and resembled the high figures usually associated with a national ballot.
DA MP James Selfe said it appeared the party's repeated warning to supporters that high turnout would be the decisive factor in the battle for Cape Town had paid off.
"It seems to have worked," Selfe said, but hastened to add that the outcome would depend on how successful the African National Congress had been in getting its supporters to the polls in numbers.
Cape Flats results slow
"All depends on what the turnout was in those areas that are the opposite of DA strongholds," he said.
However, results from the densely populated townships on the Cape Flats, where ANC support is strong, were slow in coming in.
The IEC said they expected the outcome for the metro and municipalities around the province to be known by early evening.
Of the municipalities, Stellenbosch, Mossel Bay, George and Beaufort-West were still outstanding around noon.
In Breede Valley, which includes Worcester, the DA secured an outright majority by winning 22 of 41 seats on the council.
Voter turnout in the area was 62%, compared to less than 50% in the last local government elections in 2006.
The national turnout for the last municipal election was 48%.