ANC smokes the cigar in PE

2011-05-19 13:04

It was close, but the ANC still smokes the cigar in the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality, that includes Port Elizabeth.

With most of the votes declared, the governing party has managed to snatch victory from the noses of the DA and Cope, who were hoping to form a coalition government in the city.

At 14:30pm the ANC had scored 51.7% (370 186) of the votes in the municipality, followed by the DA on 40.35% (288 948) and Cope on 4.92% (35 247), with 98% of all votes declared.

This is a massive blow for Copy, who scored almost 17% of votes in Nelson Mandela Bay during the 2009 provincial election.

DA representatives who spoke to City Press said they were disappointed by the “collapse” of Cope in Port Elizabeth and had hoped the beleaguered party would attract more votes in the city’s townships.

The DA had hoped to put together an opposition coalition to lead the metro. But the party seems to have conceded defeat.

DA leader Helen Zille posted a message on her Twitter account blaming the failure of the plan on Cope’s disappointing performance.“Dear DA voters in NMB. You did spectacularly. That was the tragedy of this election. If they had held, we would have won,” Zille wrote.

However, Eastern Cape DA leader Bobby Stevenson said the party was encouraged by its “huge growth” in the metro.

Nelson Mandela Bay ANC chairperson Nceba Faku said they were happy with the party’s performance even though they believe that it could have done better. He said his party never believed that a consolidated opposition would win, saying the opposition had “believed their own lies”.

He said the election outcome was significant as it indicated that the municipality’s residents were not interested in smaller parties, but favoured bigger ones.“Whether this signals the era of a two-party state (in the metro), I’m not sure,” Faku said.

The DA has, however, been the biggest winner in Nelson Mandela Bay in terms of improvement from previous municipal elections. In 2000 the party attracted 29% of the vote and in 2006, 26%.

The ANC has seen a steep decline in their support. In 2000 the party scored 66% of votes in Port Elizabeth, followed by 70% in 2006.

The result will be a wake-up call for the ruling party if it wants to keep control of the metro over the long-term.

The DA has done well in Cape Town, where the party stood on 79% of the vote.

But this excluded the votes from a number of Cape Town townships, which still had to be tallied.Although a substantial amount of votes still had to be declared for Tshwane, the DA’s hopes of winning the capital faded fast and furious.

The ANC was leading the vote on 56%, followed by the DA on 38%.

Votes from the Johannesburg election is coming in the slowest, with only 19% of results having been declared by 14:30. The DA is in front with 49.5%, followed by the ANC on 44.4%.

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