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Lesufi: ‘Loss of votes in Gauteng shows voters’ disgruntlement’

Lesufi has raised concern about the split between the national and provincial results for the party highlighting how this shows signs of growing support for the opposition in Gauteng.

ANC supporters dance and sing at the Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg before speeches and dignitaries arrive. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – Gauteng African National Congress (ANC) Deputy Chair Panyaza Lesufi says the marginal victory in the province is a reflection of people's disgruntlement with the party.

Lesufi has raised a concern about the split between the national and provincial results for the party highlighting how this shows signs of growing support for the opposition in Gauteng.

The ANC managed to secure 50.19% of the votes in the province while bagging 57.5% nationally.

He says this has sent a strong message to the governing party.

Lesufi says the party has received the message from voters.

“The people have also sent their own message that they’re not happy with some of the issues that they’ve raised, especially if you take into consideration that 250,000 in Gauteng voted for the ANC nationally and didn’t vote for us in the province.

“So, even our own people that feel ANC is their home they’re sending a message.”

He says with the simple majority win that they have obtained, they will work hard in order to recapture the trust of the people in the province.

He says the party will renew its efforts and bounce back.

REDUCED POWER

Meanwhile, the ANC has battled to maintain support in the country’s economic hubs barely holding on to Gauteng, suffering a 10%-point decline in KwaZulu-Natal and again losing to the Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Western Cape.

The party has for the first time declined to below 60% in the national vote, it will go to the National Assembly with 19 fewer seats.

The decline has replicated across the country’s nine provinces.

During former president Jacob Zuma’s era, the ANC’s support in Kwa-Zulu-Natal grew by 5% from the 2009 to 2014 elections.

It also became the party’s biggest province in terms of party members. Now that support has dwindled to 54%.

With the ANC’s decline and the National Freedom Party almost wiped out in the province, it is the IFP that has bounced back. It has increased support by 10%.

While the ANC has faced a decline all round, its support continues to come from the more rural and poorer provinces, including Limpopo and Eastern Cape.

Analysts have warned it might be following the fate of many liberation parties on the continent that tend to rely on support from rural areas.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)

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