Pretoria – From Emfuleni in the south to Tshwane in the north, provisional IEC results on Friday show support for the ANC has fallen across Gauteng in this year’s local government elections.
In Gauteng, South Africa’s most urbanised province, ANC support bled double-digit percentage points in certain areas, according to IEC data just after 11:30 on Friday.
With 76% of Gauteng votes verified, the ANC’s support had dropped in Ekurhuleni from 61.72% in 2011 to 48.34% in 2016.
In Johannesburg, with votes still coming in, the ANC’s support had fallen 16.75 percentage points – from 58.83% in 2011 to 42.08% in 2016.
In Tshwane, support for the party fell over 14 percentage points since 2011, to 41.19% this year.
Support for the ANC plunged by around 10 percentage points in Emfuleni, Midvaal, Lesedi, and Mogale City. In Merafong, ANC support had fallen over 19 percentage points, from 74.48% in 2011 to 54.89% this year.
Unlike provinces such as the Northern Cape, where the ANC won all municipalities, and the Eastern Cape, where the DA won Nelson Mandela Bay, Gauteng was a dead-heat race. In Johannesburg and Tshwane, each party had just over 40%.
"Revolutions do not start in rural areas," said News24 analyst Ralph Mathekga.
"You have a rapid flow of information in urban areas, you have access to information, you have more interaction. You have a population density that makes it difficult for people to avoid political discourse.
"That is why the people in urban areas are usually first to 'uprise' as well. But the issues in urban areas are usually different as well," said Mathekga.
While the ANC shed support in Gauteng, the DA gained votes.
In Ekurhuleni, the DA had increased its support by 4.67 percentage points since 2011, to 35.01% after 11:30 on Friday. In Johannesburg, the DA jumped 6.86 percentage points since 2011 to 41.64%.
In Tshwane, the DA increased its support to 44.49% of the votes verified.
"The results so far are showing that the DA voters remain steady and the DA is actually increasing its experience as a party that is capable of carrying voters from [one] election to another and even increasing them," said Mathekga.
"The steady increase shows stability," Mathekga added.
Meanwhile, the EFF had over 10% of the verified votes in Johannesburg, Tshwane, and Ekurhuleni by 11:30 on Friday.
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