South Africa's ANC takes lead in first results

A town in South Africa reflects nation’s angst 25 years after the end of apartheid

South Africa's ANC takes lead in first results

By 1100 GMT, 86 per cent of ballots in 22,925 voting districts had been counted, showing the ANC to be leading the parliamentary race with 57 per cent of the vote.

While "South Africa elections 2019" took top spot as the Google trending search term on Wednesday, with over 500 000 searches, voters were also interested in basic information like "How to check your voting station". Download BRIEFLY's news app on Google Play now and stay up-to-date with major South African news!

Zuma's nine-year rule was marked by sharp economic decline and a series of corruption scandals.

That anxiety is tied to the white nationalist party Freedom Front Plus (FF+), which has seen a surge in votes in this election; the Afrikaner party is polling at 2.8% of the vote so far, as compared to less than 1% in 2014. But its support fell under Zuma, and it lost control of big cities like the commercial capital Johannesburg in local government elections in 2016.

"A lot is to do with Cyril".

"While we expect the ANC to do "OK", given the lack of growth, disastrous levels of inequality and unemployment, we still see the internal fight back against President Ramaphosa to continue regardless after the election", Peter Attard Montalto, head of capital markets research at Intellidex, said in a note.

Others analyst said Ramaphosa, though certain to get a five-year mandate as president, had not achieved the resounding success needed to defeat resistance to his reformist agenda from within the ANC and a hardline faction of the party that still hopes to oust him.

On Thursday, Mbalula said that Cabinet would be reduced to less than 30 people. "The president's position is not under threat in any way".

President Ramaphosa came to power past year pledging to get to grips with the issue, but some voters still associate the party with the corruption which thrived under his predecessor, Jacob Zuma.

"The margin is extremely important", said Melanie Verwoerd, an independent analyst and former ANC lawmaker.

Based on early results, the ANC is projected to win about 50 per cent of the vote in Gauteng.

The DA was second with 21.83 percent and EFF third (10.09 percent). However, it has not increased its share since 2014. We stuck the course ...

Votes are cast for parties, with seats in the 400-member National Assembly allocated according to the share of the vote gained by each party.

"We will never be a party for whites".

The far-left Economic Freedom Fighters party (EFF) seems to have significantly underperformed, with about 10% of the vote.

De Lille also campaigned for the Premiership in the province. A narrow victory could embolden his critics and may force the party into coalitions to retain control of some provinces, limiting his policy options.

Mandla Booi, 45, a voter in Port Elizabeth on the south coast, said "the ANC has taken people for granted". Nelson Mandela led the party from 1991-1997 - and has been the winning party ever since.

Duarte said voter turnout could end up below the 65% to 70% range the ANC estimated late on Wednesday when most polling stations had closed.

In South Africa, voters are to make an "x" sign in a box close to their preferred party.

South Africa is still among the most unequal societies in the world with the divide between the rich and poor glaring 25 years after independence.

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