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African National Congress set to retain power in South Africa but support slips

Updated : 2019-05-10 08:55:08

Results from nearly two-thirds of voting districts in South Africa's election put the African National Congress on course to retain power but heading for its worst performance in a national poll in its 25 years in government. The former liberation party of Nelson Mandela has not won less than a 60 percent vote share since it swept to power in South Africa's first all-race election in 1994, marking the end of white minority rule. As of 1840 GMT on Thursday, ballots in 64 percent of 22,925 voting districts had been counted. The early tallies put the ANC on 57 percent in the parliamentary race, with the main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) on nearly 23 percent and the leftist Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on nearly 10 percent. Based on those results, analysts predicted the ANC was set for a vote share of between 55 and 59 percent. "The ANC result is going to be lower because of voter turnout, which could be the lowest at any parliamentary election since 1994," political analyst Melanie Verwoerd said. "Turnout has been lower in areas where more black voters live, while the turnout has been higher in the white areas." She projected a vote share of 56-57 percent for the ANC. South Africans voting on Wednesday for a new parliament and nine provincial legislatures had expressed frustration at rampant corruption, high unemployment and racial inequalities that remain deeply entrenched.

President of South Africa's governing African National Congress, Cyril Ramaphosa, arrives to cast his ballot at a polling station for the country's parliamentary and provincial elections, in Soweto, Johannesburg, South Africa, May 8, 2019.  (Reuters)
President of South Africa's governing African National Congress, Cyril Ramaphosa, arrives to cast his ballot at a polling station for the country's parliamentary and provincial elections, in Soweto, Johannesburg, South Africa, May 8, 2019.  (Reuters)
Former South African President Jacob Zuma arrives to cast his ballot in the country's parliamentary and provincial elections, in Nkandla, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
Former South African President Jacob Zuma arrives to cast his ballot in the country's parliamentary and provincial elections, in Nkandla, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
Voters queue to cast their ballots as night falls outside a polling station in Alexandra township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
Voters queue to cast their ballots as night falls outside a polling station in Alexandra township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
An African National Congress (ANC) party volunteer draped in a scarf picturing the face of former President Jacob Zuma, stands outside a voting station during the country's parliamentary and provincial elections in Cape Town, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
An African National Congress (ANC) party volunteer draped in a scarf picturing the face of former President Jacob Zuma, stands outside a voting station during the country's parliamentary and provincial elections in Cape Town, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
Voters queue to cast their ballots before polls close outside a polling station in Alexandra township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
Voters queue to cast their ballots before polls close outside a polling station in Alexandra township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 8, 2019. (Reuters)
A supporter of President Cyril Ramaphosa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) puts up posters as she awaits election results in Diepkloof township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A supporter of President Cyril Ramaphosa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) puts up posters as she awaits election results in Diepkloof township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A woman alights from a minibus taxi beside an election poster of Julius Malema from Economic Freedom party (EFF) as counting continues in the country's parliamentary and provincial elections in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A woman alights from a minibus taxi beside an election poster of Julius Malema from Economic Freedom party (EFF) as counting continues in the country's parliamentary and provincial elections in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A supporter of President Cyril Ramaphosa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) walks past a house adorned with posters as she awaits election results in Diepkloof township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A supporter of President Cyril Ramaphosa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) walks past a house adorned with posters as she awaits election results in Diepkloof township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A supporter of President Cyril Ramaphosa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) sits beside a party poster as he awaits election results in Diepkloof township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A supporter of President Cyril Ramaphosa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) sits beside a party poster as he awaits election results in Diepkloof township in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
An African National Congress election poster is seen in Hillcrest near Durban, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
An African National Congress election poster is seen in Hillcrest near Durban, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A fading African National Congress election poster is seen in Kloof near Durban, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
A fading African National Congress election poster is seen in Kloof near Durban, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
Fading election posters are seen in Wyebank near Durban, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
Fading election posters are seen in Wyebank near Durban, South Africa, May 9, 2019. (Reuters)
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