Durban - The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal said its decline of votes was due to lack of service delivery and “to some extent”, internal power struggles.
As the capturing of results at the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) results centre in Durban continued the numbers were fluctuating, but the ANC remained leading at over 54%. At about 14%, the DA trailed below the IFP which had more than 15%. With almost 91% votes already captured it was unlikely that the numbers would change much of the parties positions.
During 2014 general elections, the ANC scored 65,31% in KwaZulu-Natal.
ANC provincial secretary Mdumiseni Ntuli said although the internal squabble did not have much impact on its votes but it might have caused some dents in the party support.
“The impact was not so huge, but we would have performed better in Moses Mabhida Region (Pietermaritzburg) if we had unity instead of tensions and taking each other to courts.
“That would have meant that every person (ANC member) is pushing for the ANC to succeed,” said Ntuli.
He said in an attempt to deal with lack of service delivery before the elections, the ANC had to put some of its poor performing municipalities like Msunduzi in Pietermaritzburg) and Richmond “and others, which are not under the ANC” under administration.
“Now we are trying to figure out what can we do to correct those municipalities and attend people’s concerns.
“If the mistakes (in municipalities) have to do with deployees (of the ANC) we should have a programme that would show that there is no one who go unpunished if that person failed to perform,” he said.
When asked if former president Jacob Zuma followers might have contributed to the decline of ANC votes, Ntuli said: “It is not possible at this state to make that kind of deduction”.
“But as we will assess how we did when he (Zuma) was there and how we performed without him, then we will come to a conclusion if it (Zuma support) impacted or not,” said Ntuli.
As the provincial results capturing continued in the afternoon, IFP secretary-general Velenkosini Hlabisa said he was excited with the his party’s performance, which seemed to be moving the party up to official opposition position although there were still outstanding results to be captured.
“IFP is very happy that there were outstanding results from Ulundi, Abaqulusi, Mhlathuzi, Umfolozi, Umlalazi (all five in the IFP strongholds) and around Durban that might make a huge difference.
“We have surpassed our 2014 numbers, which were 416 000, and we are currently standing at 513 000,” he said.
Hlabisa attributed the IFP’s improvement to its unity during election campaign.
“We did not have factions, but we had united leadership under our president (Mangosuthu Buthelezi).
“Secondly what we had promised people could be seen through our performance in our municipalities,” said Hlabisa.
Sometimes during the capturing, a group of EFF members started to sing in celebration of the numbers that were appearing on screens. The party had in 2014 secured two seats at the provincial legislature.
“Whatever people of KZN have given us we are not disappointed and we are only grateful. We are very comfortable because that is what the electorate wanted us to have.
“Currently we are looking at anything between eight and 12 seats, if I’m not mistaken, we are now standing at between five and eight seats depending on the voter turnout,” said EFF provincial chairperson Vusi Khoza.