Cape Town - A confident Western Cape ANC leader Marius Fransman says his party will “definitely” take the province in Wednesday's election.
“I can safely say now, we will, in this election, be trashing the Democratic Alliance in the rural communities... we will (push up) our vote in the black communities, and you're going to have a big split vote in the coloured community,” he said.
“And we believe, with that, we will definitely take the Western Cape this time around.”
Casting his vote in a hall adjacent to the Dutch Reformed Church in Kuils River, he, nevertheless, admitted his party was in a “real fight” with the DA to wrest control of the Western Cape.
“Look, I think it's always a daunting task... The ANC has never outright won the Western Cape, however, in 2004 we came in at 46 percent.”
Fransman arrived at the voting station in a big black Mercedes Benz, wearing a gold-coloured Madiba shirt.
He said he had just come from the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) Western Cape operations centre.
Asked what he thought of the early morning turnout, he responded: “It is quite clear we're seeing lower turnouts in coloured communities.”
However, in the townships there were long queues, he said.
“We're quite excited. Our job is to make sure we secure, for everyone, a very, very high turnout, because at the end, democracy must be victorious.”
Asked what percentage of the vote he thought the ANC might end on, he said: “I will not (make) a prediction, but what we will say is that the DA know this is a real fight. It's not an easy one, as it was for them in 2009.”
Fransman - who is his party's premier candidate in the province - said he had chosen to cast his vote in Kuils River because it was the area where he had spent his early years, and “walked the streets” as a child.
“I decided I must come here (to cast my vote).”
Ahead of his arrival, a 21-member band, who called themselves the Pennysylvanians, entertained a long queue of voters that stretched from the polling station and round the church.
Wearing ANC T-shirts, the musicians stood in a circle on the edge of the church square, in front of His Kingdom Dance School, playing tunes such as “Eye of the Tiger”.
One of them, a stout woman with a green doek on her head, wore a blue bag emblazoned with a large Union Jack - the national flag of the United Kingdom - over her shoulder.
ANC and DA supporters danced together in the square in front of the many media cameras.
Fransman did not take his place in the long queue, but proceeded straight into the voting station to cast his ballot.
“Why does he get to go straight in while the rest of us stand in line?” asked one elderly man near the entrance.
No-one answered his question. - Sapa