Johannesburg - The Freedom Front Plus has credited the raging land issue for its improved performance, as vote counting for the general elections held on Wednesday continued on Thursday throughout the country.
The FF+ has been one of the most vocal political parties against propositions by the ANC and the EFF for the amendment of the Constitution to enable expropriation of land without compensation.
FF+ head of elections Wouter Wessels said the party has been able to mobilise its support through its campaigns on land, among others, ahead of the polls.
“We have managed to get our voter to the voting stations yesterday and managed to attract more voters with our campaign. With a few seats we did a lot and we were an effective opposition party. We put our policy stances there and we are not wishy-washy,” Wessels said.
By 11:30 am – with 34.15% of the national vote counting completed - the FF+ held the fourth spot at 3.2%, ahead of the IFP and just behind the ANC, DA and the EFF.
In the 2014 general elections, the party - often been accused of being right-wing - secured the seventh spot at 0.90%.
Wessels said the FF+ was carefully optimistic that it was showing enormous growth, despite it being the early stages.
“It looks as if we have more than doubled or maybe even three times doubled our support since 2014, especially if we look at certain voting districts. In 2014, we only won or did the best in five voting districts across the country. At this moment we are already at more than 77 which we have won or did the best in,” he said.
He said the FF+ was however not the only party that benefited in using the land debate for campaigning.
“I think land played a very big role in the election, but not only on our side. The DA also ran a campaign with regards to land and their whole campaign for the last month focused on stopping the ANC and the EFF. The EFF also ran a land campaign and the Land Party, BLF and the ANC also did. So land was on the table,” he said.