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LIVE BLOG: DA will come back stronger - Maimane

Mmusi Maimane gives his first address at the IEC today since speculation about his losing his DA leadership after preliminary election results.

With over 60% of the votes tallied in Gauteng so far, the ANC is still struggling to get over the 50 mark.

The IEC reported the highest voter turnout was in Gauteng with 71.89% and the lowest voter turnout was in Limpopo with 58.77%.

The IEC says based on the results captured to date, voter turnout was
sitting at 65.52% nationally. 

Patricia de Lille says education is the key to solving poverty.

Good Party leader Patricia de Lille says she wants to focus on poverty and inequality when she gets to Parly...

Aunty Pat talks to 702's Eusebius McKaiser about results and the election process...

National vote counting at 80% as of 10:36AM: 

Is Gauteng heading for a coalition government?

With nearly 60% of the voting districts counted, the ANC has just lost an outright majority in Gauteng (for now) with 49.64% of the vote.

The IFP and DA are battling to be the official opposition in KwaZulu-Natal while the ANC remains firmly in the lead.

With more than 85% of the vote tallied in Mpumalanga, they are the number two party in that province, having secured 13% of the vote, up from 6%.

Going into this general election, the EFF was the official opposition in Limpopo and the North West.

The EFF is showing growth as its moving to be the official opposition in a third province.

At least 76% of the resukts have been counted thus far and as it stands the ANC is on 57,28%, the DA is at 21.75% and the EFF is at 10.1%. 

Good morning and welcome back to EWN's live blog about the elections results.

A few of the smaller parties have left the IEC centre. Some officials from bigger parties are still here, but it's generally gotten much quieter.

The IEC says of the 8.9 million votes captured by 6:30 pm from over 13,000 voting stations, Gauteng had recorded the highest voter turnout at 71.8%, while Limpopo recorded the lowest at 58.3%.

In 2014, Gauteng recorded a total voter turn out of 72.9, while Limpopo had 60.67% of registered voters casting their ballots.

Of the votes counted so far in this election, 3.7% are special votes and 1.4% are counted as spoilt ballots.

The bigger provinces, including KZN, Limpopo, Free State and Gauteng have the most results outstanding.

POLL: Have the results from FF Plus (which has scaled up to number 4 nationally so far) and the Mzwanele Manyi's #ATM (which has secured a seat in Parliament) surprised you? Vote on our Twitter poll.

Several smaller parties say they plan to launch legal action against the IEC following what they say are a number of irregularities during Wednesday's national elections. 

The parties, which include the African Transformation Movement, Black Land First, the Land Party, Socialist Revolutionary Party And the National Freedom Party say they were sidelined throughout the electioneering process - and say they will now take action against the IEC.

As for the BLF, well...

EFF is getting to 10% now. In 2014, they secured 6.35%.

Can Cope survive? They have fallen behind the ATM with over 26,000 votes (0.31%).

The African Transformation Movement has just gotten one seat in Parliament with 40 005 votes (0.48%). They are singing and celebrating in the centre.

The battle for 4th place is a very close one between the FF Plus and IFP. Both parties are hopeful of positive results.

Apa Pooe,Secretary General PAC, says the party has lodged a formal complaint with the IEC regarding the alleged double voting  during voting on Wednesday.

Mzwandile Hleko, National Secretary of elections of COPE shares his thoughts on the current election numbers and the IEC investigating alleged double voting. 

The IEC will be holding another live briefing soon.

Let's have a look at how the results right at the bottom of the pile... The most recognisable party here, Hlaudi Motsoeneng's ACM, sits with 1,871 votes which equals 0.02% of the total tally. LM

The 50% mark has officially been passed now.

We have reached the 50% mark, folks

We are almost at the 50% of votes counted mark. Check how the top 3 parties are doing so far. 

If you want to keep track of the results live, you can use the IEC's easy-to-use portal.

https://www.elections.org.za/NPEDashboard/app/hybrid.html

Meanwhile, in the Western Cape...

There is a big discrepancy between the official number of people arrested in KZN as announced by the national IEC and the number given by the KZN regional IEC. The difference is at least 16 in number.

The Freedom Front Plus (FF+) said its increase in electoral support in this year’s general elections was an indication that the party was for all South Africans.

Let's cross to KwaZulu-Natal to see how those results are looking...

According to an prediction by the CSIR, both the ANC and the DA are set to lose some support in the 2019 vote for the National Assembly.

As of 12:30 the results: 

Some 2019 elections stats coming your way...

The ANC is leading by big margin in NW, with 62.54%, EFF's tally has steadily been climbing to 16.69%.

At 0722 GMT, the rand traded at R14.3350 per dollar, 0.36% firmer than its New York close on Wednesday.

While the focus has been on the three major parties; ANC, DA and EFF, parties like the Good Party and Freedom Front Plus are shaking things up...

Concerns around voter fraud in terms of some voting more than once and ink easily coming off continue to grow. The IEC received formal complaints.

There are media reports that ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule and former President Jacob Zuma met in secret to help form the ATM party.

At least 1 seat! The newly formed African Transformation Movement (ATM) said it was convinced that it would get at least one seat in Parliament.

"I mezmerize them!" ACM leader Hlaudi Motsoeneng said earlier this year. ACM votes as of 9:50AM.

The IEC uses zapper machines to determine if someone is registered to vote, but those machines can't immediately detect if you have already voted. Instead, all officials can do is manually scratch you off the voters’ roll if you vote at the polling station where you are registered.

The IEC says unlike with the old green bar-coded IDs, the smart card system does not allow the officials to stamp the document to show you have already voted.

EWN has seen videos of voters showing the supposed indelible ink being easily removed and the security measures at polling stations failed to detect they had already voted.

"There's nowhere to hide." That is the IEC’s warning to people who cheated the voting system.

Not our handwriting....

The VF Plus (that's Freedom Front Plus) has seemingly made wide inroads into the DA’s support base.

Back to seriousness... 

What is a really serious event in South Africa without memes? 

As of 9:05 that is what the results looked like:

Over a quarter of the national vote have been counted and they change by the minute. 

What do you think?

Party Agents representing some political parties continue to carefully monitor the results screens...

The IEC in the Western Cape is dealing with an avalanche of complaints, lodged mainly by the DA and the ANC, over the unavailability of ballot papers at a number of polling stations, with both parties claiming this has cost them votes.

It will still be more than 48 hours before South Africans know the final results.

The ANC has taken an early lead at just over 50% nationally followed by the DA and EFF at 28% and 7%, respectively.

By 4am on Thursday morning, 887,867 valid votes had been captured.

Nationally, the ANC is enjoying an early lead followed by the DA and the Economic Freedom Fighters.

So how are those results looking?

The Electoral Commission maintained they will not allow the potential misconduct of one or two individuals to taint the overall outcome of these elections.

The IEC announced it wanted to assure voters of the overall integrity of the electoral process after it was alleged voters were able to cast more than one vote at different voting stations.

Two people died at different voting stations, one in the Vaal and another in Tshwane. The IEC sent its condolences to te families.

Voting around the country got off to a good start, with a few glitches here and there. Some polling stations opened late but voting was peaceful.

Let's recap some of yesterday's events...

Good morning and welcome back to EWN's live blog about the election, voting is now underway...

"Once the reconciliation is completed, the marked ballots are sorted into piles according to the party voted for. For ease of counting, the ballots are grouped together in batches of tens and hundreds."

"Ballot boxes containing special votes are also opened and the contents verified against lists of authorized special voters before being added to the count."

"Counting takes place within the voting station in front of party agents and observers. The first step in the process is to check the seals and open the ballot boxes. The ballots contained therein are then reconciled with those issued, any remaining unused ballots and any ballots which may have been cancelled.

"Strong thunderstorms were reported in the early evening in the Free State where 16 temporary voting stations in Manguang were blown down by strong winds and where heavy rain affected the conditions underfoot."

"The Electoral Commission is extremely pleased with the smooth progress of voting today despite isolated incidents where voting operations were adversely affected by inclement weather, community unrest, power outages and some logistical challenges.

"Except at those stations where voters were still waiting to cast their ballots, voting stations throughout South Africa have begun closing their doors and switching focus to the critical process of counting votes," the IEC says.

We now have the latest from the IEC.

President Ramaphosa thanks all those who voted.

EFF leader Julius Malema encourages fighters 'to attack'.

Over 20,000 voting stations across the country have officially closed, but the IEC says the people who are still queuing at polling stations will be given an opportunity to cast their ballots. 

Earlier this afternoon the IEC said it was satisfied with voter turn out so far and how the electoral process had unfolded across the country. 

But it also confirmed there were a number of glitches that interrupted the process.






This is the warning message the IEC has sent out over thumb ink.

Phumelela Nzewu from Western Cape sent this photo to EWN saying his ink is starting to fade just hours after voting.

This video posted by UDM leader Bantu Holomisa shows someone removing what they say is IEC voting ink from their thumb. This issue has been raised as a serious concern.

Home Affairs has reportedly issued thousands of temporary IDs to allow those who don't have theirs anymore to vote.

Here's how EFF leader Julius Malema's voting experience went down.

The confusion over ink continues. The IEC has admitted it cannot say with certainty that the ink placed on thumbs cannot be removed, but has promised there are security measures to avoid people cheating the system.






Imagine getting to the voting station and there no ballot papers? Well, that what happened at some stations.

If you haven't gotten to the voting station yet, hurry on and make sure you are there by 9pm.

Six people suspected of involvement in violent protests were arrested in KwaZulu-Natal.

This is the reality many across the country have to face. Some hope voting will help, others think it won't.

One of the last 2 living Rivonia trialists, Andrew Mlangeni, voting earlier today.

Voting proceeded smoothly at all stations despite violent clashes on Wednesday morning in the Northern Cape, says the IEC in the province.

It's the battle of the hashtags. #IVotedEFF and #IVotedANC are both trending right now.

The IEC says it is saddened by the lack of respect for democracy and the rights of others in these limited areas and once again calls on these communities to put the national interests of the country above the narrow interests of the community at least for today.

Four voting stations in Vuwani were forced to close for a short period today.

The IEC has just announced that by 5pm today, five voting stations had still not been opened. One in Buffalo City, one in the Eastern Cape and four in KwaZulu-Natal.

Gauteng ANC's Jacob Khawe explains the passing of an elderly voter in the Vaal... 

Some voters have also raised concerns about ballot papers running out at their stations.

In the small town of Mamre, a voting station at the local primary school has also run out of VEC 4 forms.

Earlier, the IEC’s Sy Mamabolo announced that an elderly woman died at a polling station in Tshwane.

It’s understood the pensioner died while trying to cast her vote. 

Gauteng ANC Secretary Jacob Khawe says they are saddened by the death of an elderly voter at the Maqingwana voting station in Emfuleni in the Vaal. 



IN PICTURES: All of the feels!

VOTING CHECKLIST:

  • You must be registered to vote

  • Stations open at 07:00 and close at 21:00

  • You can vote anywhere in the country for the national vote

  • You must be in your province for the provincial vote

Despite claims by political parties that some people have voted twice, the IEC in Gauteng says it's near impossible for that to happen.

Some say they are not voting:

Rain has come down in parts of the country as voting continues, but the wet weather has not deterred the millions of people who've descended on polling stations to make their mark.

So this is where those automated, sometimes not automated calls come from...

Oh no, IEC officials told people who aren’t registered in Atlantis they’ve run out of the VEC 4 forms.

The ANC’s Gwede Mantashe has voted in Boksburg. Picture: Thando Kubheka/EWN.

After a slow start in Khayelitsha, voters are starting to make their way to polling stations: 

The IEC says SMSes are allowed...

You've heard of proof of address, let's see proof of vote: 

Former president Thabo Mbeki. Credit: Mia Lindeque/EWN.

Voting station in Chiawelo where President Cyril Ramaphosa voted. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN.

Mamabolo says plotical parties can sent SMSes to canvass because it's not illegal.

Mamabolo says if you applied for a special vote and couldn't vote or officials left early, you can still vote today.

The IEC is now taking questions from the media...

Mamabolo says it's important to check your ballot paper is stamped at the back.

Mamabolo has encouraged employers to let their employees to go vote. "Every person on the roll should be afforded the opportunity to make their mark."

Mamabolo says some voting stations will have their hours extended because they opened late.

Mamabolo has sent condolences to an IEC official's family after she died last night and an elderly voter who died at a Tshwane voting station. 

IEC Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo conceded to challenges where voting stations were not opened on time but adds that has now been resolved.

The IEC is briefing the country on voting thus far: 

Deputy president David Mabuza has voted in Barberton, Mpumalanga.

1994 and 2019, in pictures: 

Moving to the North West, Marikana residents are ready to cast their votes:

South Africa's biggest voting station is in Joubert Park. 

uBaba Zuma and his wives in Nkandla:

The family of kidnapped SA journalist Shiraaz Mohamed hold up posters where Ramaphosa is due to vote:

Former president Jacob Zuma has casted his vote in Nkandla.

Ramaphosa will be welcomed by premier David Makhura and IEC chairperson Glen Mashinini.

Excitement ahead of Ramaphosa's statement after voting:

A special guest on the EWN elections chopper today is Denis Farrell, who took an iconic aerial view of snaking queues during our first democratic election in 1994. 

O jewa ke eng? (What's eating you?) Ha! President Ramaphosa is getting savvy on the streets:

In the Johannesburg, a Hillbrow resident said she's been counting down the days to make her mark.

Let's checkout some Twitter analysis on how the streets feel about voting: 

Gauteng residents, what about etolls? Don't worry, Blade Nzimande has got you on this. Speaking on to the SACP, he had this to say about the tolling system:

Party agents in the Western Cape brave the cold and wet weather to represent their parties.

Nkosi sikelel' Afrika
Morena boloka setjhaba sa heso...
God bless South Africa.

Mmusi Maimane said the DA was working towards a nonracial future.


Public announcement! President Cyril Ramaphosa has a message for South Africans: 

Interesting stats for this year's elections...

DA leader Mmusi Maimane has voted in Dobsonville: Credit: Christa Eybers/EWN.

Maimane said the country has been through a lot in the past 25 years, but this is the election that can change the future.

Dumeland bagaetso! DA leader Mmusi Maimane and Gauteng premier candidate Solly Msimanga have cast their votes in Dobsonville after waiting in line and interacting with members of the community.

Let's checkout the people who have voted...

Checkout a guide on the voting process:

Are you a first-time voter and want to know how the voting process works? Or need a refresher? Here's a quick guide.

Slight delay in some voting stations, the IEC has apologised and is working on it...

As much as some Khayelitsha residents are unhappy and protesting, others are voting.

A re yeng ko North West (let's go to the North West).

Moving back to Gauteng, we take you to the leafy suburb of Northcliff...

Protests and sporadic gang violence were two of the issues the Western Cape IEC flagged as threats to the poll.

The township is the biggest in the province.

 In the Western Cape, there are tyres burning on Swartklip Road in Khayelitsha because of a protest.

Still in Gauteng, Ekurhuleni voters at Sunnyridge Primary School.

It's a lot fam, the entire country is voting and we keep bringing updates from around mzansi. Stay with us, we have also highlighted the important news! 

Back to Gauteng, in Pretoria, chuckles here and there... Checkout UDM leader Bantu Holomisa joking with ANC supporters: 

Voters in Durban said they are relieved the strike that was threatening to derail voting is now over.

Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane in Dobsonville to cast his vote.

There are over 104,000 people who are registered to vote in the township.

In Alexandra, residents hope the elections will move them out of poverty. 

Queues at Future Stars Baby Centre, on Albertyn Street in Vorna Valley, Midrand

Alright, let’s move to Gauteng, which has the highest number of registered voters at 6.3 million…

Are you voting today? It's actually important that you do...

The Independent Electoral Commission said 26.7 million people are on the voters roll and it's done everything it can to ensure smooth running.

KZN Premier Senzo Mchunu urged those eligible to vote to exercise their right.

IMPORTANT ELECTION INFO: 

1.If you were registered in another province, you can still vote today, you'll vote on the national ballot.

2. If you have either lost or have a problem with your ID, there will be Department of Home Affairs officials at all voting stations to assist you.

3. Please ensure that both ballot papers that you'll be casting your votes on have been stamped at the back, if not, alert the IEC officials at the voting station.

Let’s go to KwaZulu-Natal, one of the provinces that's been identified as a hotspot for possible disruptions to voting.

Hello and welcome to EWN's live about the 2019 general elections. Stay here to get rolling updates around the country as South Africans decide who will govern the country.