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South Africa’s ANC loses majority in most significant political shift in three decades

South Africa’s ANC saw its support drop to 40.18% in the latest election, a stark decline from 57.5% in 2019, marking its first failure to secure an outright majority since 1994. This result reflects deep voter dissatisfaction and suggests a significant transformation in South Africa’s political landscape.



Secretary General of the African National Congress, Fikile Mbalula, addresses the media

In a monumental shift in South African politics, the African National Congress (ANC) has witnessed a significant decline in voter support, garnering only 40.18% in the 2024 General Election, as announced by the Independent Electoral Commission on Sunday.

This marks a steep fall from the 57.5% achieved in the 2019 elections.

For the first time since the advent of democracy in 1994, the ANC failed to secure an outright majority, signifying a potential end to its long-standing dominance.

The regional elections also echoed this national trend, with the ANC losing control in three of the country’s nine provinces.

The Western Cape remains under the Democratic Alliance (DA), while KwaZulu-Natal has shifted allegiance to the newly-formed uMkhonto we Sizwe party (MK), spearheaded by former president Jacob Zuma, a former ANC leader. Gauteng, a critical economic region including Johannesburg and Pretoria, also saw diminished support for the ANC.

Gwede Mantashe, ANC National Chairperson, attributed the significant electoral losses to the departure of Zuma from the party, stating that his exit had “decimated the ANC” and the election results reflect this split.

In its statement for the election results, ANC noted that the results underscore a significant decline from previous showings, signaling a major shift in public sentiment. The party acknowledges that various factors have contributed to this erosion of support, reflecting a clear message from the electorate.

“We wish to assure the people of South Africa that we have heard them,” a party spokesperson stated. “We have listened to their concerns, their frustrations, and their dissatisfaction. We are committed to addressing these issues as we move forward.”

Despite the internal turmoil and accusations, political analyst Lesiba Teffo suggested that the ANC’s decline was not merely due to leadership issues but also due to unfulfilled promises and pervasive corruption.

Teffo highlighted that issues like growing poverty, extensive unemployment, frequent electricity cuts, and corruption drove voters away from the ANC, criticizing the party for its inability to act decisively against malpractices.

In contrast, the DA slightly increased its vote share to 21.8%, consolidating its position as the country’s second-largest party. However, the most surprising outcome was the performance of Zuma’s MK party, which secured 14.59% of the vote, positioning it third above the far-left Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), which saw a decrease to 9.51%.

With the ANC unable to form a government independently, Mantashe mentioned the necessity of forming a coalition, although no specific partners have been decided upon.

The EFF has shown willingness to collaborate with the ANC, but their combined vote share still falls short of a majority. The DA remains non-committal about any potential alliance, emphasizing the need for a central executive meeting to decide the way forward.

Political analyst Sandile Swana and Adam Habib from the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, shared concerns about the complexities and public acceptance of any potential ANC-DA coalition, citing significant ideological differences and public perceptions.

Moreover, the electoral process itself was not without controversy. Zuma raised allegations of electoral fraud, demanding a rerun, which was echoed by other smaller parties. The IEC confirmed receiving over 500 complaints and acknowledged a missing box of ballots, although they assured that the votes had been counted.

With a voter turnout of just 58.64%, the lowest since 1994, and only about 22% of the voting-age population supporting the ANC, the political landscape in South Africa stands at a critical juncture, underscoring a profound public disillusionment with the erstwhile liberation party.

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The ANC took over a perfectly functional country and ran it into the ground. They cared more about problems thousands of miles away than their own citizens at home.

It only took a decade for South Africans to decide to rid themselves off such parasites. Hopefully the opposition isn’t the same flavour of useless and corrupt as the former incumbents.

But the dysfunctional infrastructure and high crime rates are not going to magically resolve overnight. That’s the problem with sliding backwards in national progress, once it starts, you’ll need to put in the effort to stop it.

Too busy supporting Hamas. tsk tsk tsk

Unstable government everything there also privatized but very free to go to ICC ICJ to complain about Israel. Own country falling apart.