Mooiplaats test for impact of EFF
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Mooiplaats informal settlement, outside Pretoria, is one area that will indicate the impact the Economic Freedom Fighters has made since its launch.
Residents in the area cannot wait for the election results to see which party between the ANC, which runs the ward, and the EFF will turn out victorious after Wednesday’s polls.
The EFF has led at least two protests by the community against the City of Tshwane over its relocation to Olivenhoutbosch.
Outside the Mooiplaats voting station, residents had lively and light-hearted debates on which party would win.
Anna Ledwaba, the first person to vote in the area, said: “So many people died so that we could vote. My sister was killed just after Chris Hani.
“People need to remember where we are from. I will not vote for a new party. I did not intend to vote, but last night (Tuesday) my brother called and asked who I was going to vote for. He even called me this morning (Wednesday) to remind me to vote.”
But not everyone believes history is enough to convince them to vote for the ANC.
Johanna Tlamama said: “During the 1976 student riots, I was in Standard 6. When Hani died, I went to Ellis Park stadium for his funeral. All those things do not mean anything because people still suffer and I cannot vote for the ANC.”
Another resident Sophie Matshika said: “The EFF will be a better option.
“The ANC was not even able to bribe us with electricity just so we could vote for it. They keep on lying to us about moving.”
However, the ruling party still has support in the informal settlement.
Moses Morulana, a staunch ANC member, said: “Mooiplaas is divided between two parties – the ANC and the EFF.
“The EFF is only a few months old and we have been on door-to-door campaigns trying to resolve the people’s problems.
“It is true that people have to get services and we know that they complain but they will vote for the ANC.”
The ANC gave out T-shirts to residents who could show their inked thumbs to prove they had voted.
Hundreds of people stood in snaking queues around the voting tent.
Morulana said they had about 2 000 T-shirts. “We do not ask what party they voted for, we just want to give them a T-shirt. As the ANC, we are confident that we will get 90 percent of the votes.”
Another ANC supporter, Simon Sithole said most of the people who supported the EFF in the area were either too young to vote or foreigners.
“The ANC is supported by older people. Yes, EFF has support, but most of them are not even allowed to vote. They are too young. We will retain the area.”
The EFF’s Peter Mothogwana admitted that older residents supported the ANC but added: “There are more young people than the old ones. People are also unhappy about moving. We are confident that we will do well. We are going to win the area.”