By-election results sees smaller parties lose to the big guns

2010-07-22 13:29

Yesterday’s by-elections in Western Cape represent a significant result for the DA, independent political analyst Daniel Silke has said.

The results – the DA and ANC took an equal share of the six municipal wards contested in the province – show the opposition party is consolidating support from coloured areas, according to Silke.

He added that small parties would be vulnerable and would lose support as more people were voting for bigger parties such as the DA and the ANC.

Silke said that these results show that poorer coloured communities have left the ANC and are showing their support for the DA.

But the DA still has a long way to go before it can win the heartlands of the ANC, especially in black communities, he added.

The by-elections were held as a result of councillors being expelled and several resignations.

Contested wards included two in Philippi, two in Khayelitsha and Mitchell’s Plein and two in Beaufort West.

The ANC reclaimed two wards from the Congress of the People (Cope) in Philippi and defended one in Khayelitsha.

The DA won two Beaufort West wards from the Independent Civic Organisation of South Africa led by the controversial former ANC councillor Truman Prince, and a ward in Mitchell’s Plein, taking it from the ANC.

Earlier this month, the ANC’s Naledi Pandor, Trevor Manuel and Membathisi Mdladlana campaigned in the area, as did Julius Malema.

Winning three wards in the by-elections was a big step forward in reclaiming the governance of the province, said ANC provincial task team head Mdladlana.

He said the ANC’s task team would meet next weekend to strategise for the 2011 municipal elections.

Mdladlana said: “I firmly believe that we can take over the province, especially the Cape metropole, because it is vulnerable and most people regret that they voted for the DA during the last municipal by-elections.”

The DA, however, believes people are increasingly turning to the party and that come the 2011 local government elections, it would be victorious in the province once again.

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