EFF, IFP accuse ANC of vote rigging

Alexandra police are also investigating an apparent hostage drama linked to vote rigging.

A member of The African National Congress sits at his party's station in the IEC's national results centre in Pretoria. Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Alexandra police are investigating an apparent hostage drama linked to alleged vote rigging.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) are both accusing the ANC of vote rigging and tampering in the northern Johannesburg township.

Residents say an EFF member found a box of ballot papers at the entrance of the Thusong Service Centre on Thursday morning.

The party member says he found national, provincial and special votes ballot papers.

IFP members later said they saw the ballot box being transported in an ANC vehicle.

It's also alleged that IFP members then held officials from the ruling party and Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) against their will in the centre at around 3am.

The IFP denied this but said it had evidence that ballot boxes were being transported in an ANC-marked vehicle.

No injuries have been reported but IEC officials are receiving trauma counselling.

The IFP's Muzi Ntuli says the party believes it came first at the voting station at the nearby Women for Peace voting centre, but results show they came in after the ANC.

The ANC and IFP will meet tomorrow to discuss the issue on Friday.

Police warned angry IFP and EFF members who had been protesting on Eighth Street earlier to disperse.

Demonstrators were given 20 minutes to vacate the area or face arrest.

Meanwhile, the IEC says it's aware of problems in the area.

Authorities are monitoring the situation.

The ANC's Paul Mashatile has condemned this morning's apparent hostage situation.

He says there is no need for violence while the vote counting process is still underway.

"If the IFP is unhappy about anything with respect to either voting or counting, they must lodge a complaint with the IEC. There is no need for confrontation."