President Cyril Ramaphosa arrives at Ellis Park in Johannesburg for the ANC's final rally before the election on May 8. (Marco Longari/AFP)
The latest pre-election poll undertaken by the South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR) shows that Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal could be hung provinces, unless there is a late surge in favour of the ANC in both provinces.
The tracking poll, which was in the field from April 27 to May 4, is the fifth survey undertaken by the SAIRR since September 2018.
The report shows that the ANC could garner less than 55% of the national vote, although this could change depending on campaigning over the four days since May 4, voter turnout and the survey's margin. This is based on a voter turnout of 70%.
Previous polls have also suggested that the race in Gauteng may be too close to call, but the suggestion that KwaZulu-Natal - historically an ANC stronghold where the party won 64% of the vote in 2014 - may come as a surprise to many.
Politics and governance head Gareth van Onselen said the IRR research had found the ANC could receive 53% support, the DA 24%, while the EFF could grow to 14%.
In KwaZulu-Natal, the poll places the ANC at 48%, while noting the DA could grow to 20.2%. It also projects dramatic growth for the EFF, polling 13%, up from the 1.85% in 2014.
The latest survey sees the IFP growing by less than 1%.
Van Onselen said ANC support among black voters had declined, with the DA enjoying a marginal spike.
"The DA systematically consolidated its share of white KZN voters. Among Indian voters, the DA also systematically consolidated its support upwards."