IEC announces preliminary results of 2016 municipal elections

CEO Mosotho Moepya says the 2016 municipal elections were the most challenging since 1994.

Picture: Aletta Harrison/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has announced preliminary results for South Africa's 2016 Municipal Elections.

The results exclude those from the Johannesburg metro, where counting has not yet been finalised.

With 99% of the votes counted by 7pm, the ANC has emerged dominant on a national basis with 53.89% of the vote, while the DA is in second place with 26.92%.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), looking for a foothold in its first local government elections, has bagged 8.18% of the total vote, while the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) received 4.26%.

In terms of votes counted by 7pm, the ANC has secured 175 councils, the DA 24 councils, the IFP 7 councils and the Independent Civic Organisation of South Africa (Icosa) 1 council.

Chairman of the IEC Glen Mashinini says he is pleased to announce that the electoral commission has satisfied itself that the conditions of this year's elections were free and fair, adding that he is proud that every stakeholder behaved to protect and provide peaceful elections.

"When the IEC launched the elections in January, I knew this would be a litmus test for the commission and the country as a whole."

Chief Electoral Officer Mosotho Moepya emphasised the dramatic increase in the voter turnout for this year's elections compared to the 2011 municipal elections.

"The last time we had 57.6% voter turnout and we wanted to increase that, so this year we attained 58% voter turnout."

He says on average, voters waited 16 minutes in queues to casts their ballots.

President Jacob Zuma was present at the IEC briefing.

Several EFF members held placards in front of the podium as he addressed the briefing.