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ROAD TO 2024 ELECTIONS

Dramatic decline in electoral support of ANC clear from new national poll

Dramatic decline in electoral support of ANC clear from new national poll
Illustrative image: In the run-up to the 2024 elections, the decline of the ANC seems inevitable, but no obvious successor has emerged. (Photos: Kim Ludbrook/EPA, Yeshiel Panchia/EPA-EFE, Nic Bothma/EPA-EFE)

Unless something unforeseen occurs, the shape of post-election South Africa is already reasonably clear. It shows a wounded and decaying ANC, well below the 50% mark; the DA (19%) and EFF (16%) each winning less than a fifth of the vote; many of the older smaller parties dying off; and the remainder dividing tiny vote shares.

One of Antonio Gramsci’s more famous comments was that “the old world is dying, and the new world struggles to be born”.

That seems to be true of South African electoral politics where the decline of the ANC seems unstoppable, but where no obvious successor has emerged – the DA and EFF each attract only around a fifth or sixth of voters; a host of smaller parties consistently win a handful of votes; more than 90 new parties were recently registered, but have added noise rather than contributing substantial change to the political scene – at least as measured by polls.

A worse symptom, as Colette Schulz-Herzenberg noted after the 2019 general election, is voter hostility to voting: “For the first time since the founding democratic elections in 1994, less than half (49%) of all eligible South Africans cast a vote in 2019.”

People either sit on their hands or simply don’t bother registering as voters. It is easy to write this off as voter apathy. Rather than blame the voters, it is more accurate to say that no party has offered anything near enough to energise and mobilise these voters.

Unless something unforeseen occurs, the shape of post-election South Africa is already reasonably clear: a wounded and decaying ANC, well below the 50% mark (in this poll at 42% among registered voters who intend voting) but bigger than any other party; the DA (19%) and EFF (16%) winning less than a fifth of the vote; many of the older smaller parties dying off; and the remainder dividing tiny vote shares. If the new world is taking shape anywhere, it is at provincial level, to which we now turn our attention.

Read more in Daily Maverick: New poll confirms ANC slide – desperate South Africans want new options

In late 2023, one of the newest parties in the country, Change Starts Now (CSN), commissioned a large baseline survey before the party was launched. CSN was launched in the last 10 days of fieldwork and so the survey’s function was to understand the lay of the land, rather than specifically to research CSN or its leader, Roger Jardine.

The survey had a sample of 9,000 respondents, drawn in appropriate proportions from all provinces and across urban/rural areas (many surveys scrimp on the rural component because it is commonly slow and costly, this one did not). CSN has given permission for the data analysed here to be released.

Poll of voter intentions ahead of the 2024 elections, per province

Provincial breakdown of a national poll of voter intentions ahead of the 2024 elections. (All the figures cited are for registered voters only, regardless of voter intention.)

Western Cape

The headline that can be taken from the graph presumably depends on what the reader thinks matters most or where they live. Reading from the bottom up, the first headline is that in this poll, the DA has lost its majority status in the Western Cape.

This downward trend started in 2019, when the DA won a respectable 56%, but down from the 59% in 2014. The current 42% is a quite remarkable drop given the ongoing media coverage of Western Cape governance as the national gold standard – voters seem not to agree.

The ANC in the Western Cape has continued to decline, from 29% in 2019 to 24% – it is only half as popular as the DA. The EFF has almost doubled, but from a small base and still fails to reach double figures in the poll.

In the Western Cape, “other” (7%) comprises some small but important growth points – the ACDP has 1% but so do newer entities, including Build One South Africa, led by the DA’s former leader Mmusi Maimane, and the Patriotic Alliance with a respectable 2%.

Coalition government may have reached the Western Cape, which in addition to 7% choosing small parties, sees 18% undeclared. The DA needs to mobilise roughly half this latter group to breach the 50% mark – if not, it will face difficult choices for coalition partners. This is new territory for the provincial DA, which (in the Western Cape) may be perhaps suffering the “sins of incumbency”.

It is common cause in polling that many voters who tell fieldworkers they “don’t know” whom they may vote for, or refuse to say, do end up voting. Past experience strongly suggests that they are not ANC voters hiding away, but that they largely vote for parties other than the ANC. As such, on election day, all opposition parties, large and small, should win more votes than polled, as people are forced to choose (or spoil their ballot paper).

KwaZulu-Natal

Just above the Western Cape in the graph is KwaZulu-Natal. Recently, Stephen Grootes wrote a piece about the province, wondering what would happen in the election, given the seeming inevitability of the ANC slipping below the 50% mark (it achieved 54% in 2019). The results in the poll are a stark answer – the ANC has collapsed, with a quarter of the vote (26%), a figure that may drop further.

This survey was in the field before former President Jacob Zuma launched the uMkhonto Wesizwe party (MK) and took aim at the ANC (the party and its voters). The voter appeal of MK is currently unknown – but it will be taking away ANC voters.

The EFF has grown by a couple of percentage points, as has the DA: again, neither of the two pretenders is making much of a showing.

The real twist is provided by the Inkatha Freedom Party, which dominates the “other” category at 15%. That means the IFP and DA are level-pegging. The province has a whopping 28% of respondents who did not select a party in the survey: this makes any firm predictions impossible, but the pattern of a collapsed ANC vote and other parties juggling for voters will not change. Nor will speculation over the fascinating set of possible coalitions that will govern the province.

Gauteng

Gauteng is the third province where the ANC fails to hit the 40% mark, coming in at 35%, a calamitous drop from the 50% of 2019. As in KwaZulu-Natal, it may still be the biggest party, but the trend suggests it is becoming a small(ish) fish in a big pond. With the EFF on 17% and the DA on 20% in Gauteng, the coalition prospects can go either way – though the ANC remains the decider.

If an ANC/DA or ANC/EFF coalition emerges, the smaller parties will lose influence (ActionSA has 3%, the IFP 2%, the Freedom Front Plus 1% as do Build One South Africa and the Patriotic Alliance). They will be neither king-makers nor coalition makers or breakers.

The 17% of Gauteng respondents who declined to choose a party have historically voted against the ANC – so there may yet be growth among smaller parties as well as the DA and EFF.

Free State

The Free State has emerged as a province of interest. The ANC finally breaks through the four-in-10 barrier, at 42% –  again, a dramatic drop from the 61% of 2019, with former Premier Ace Magashule possibly muddying the waters for the ANC. The DA and EFF have yet again managed steady if unspectacular growth – and again, governing the province will be undertaken by a coalition chosen by the ANC, not the opposition.

Who’s the boss?

That seems to be the key take-away: provinces are beginning to slide from the ANC’s grasp, but in five of nine provinces, the ANC remains large enough to dictate coalition terms. These results suggest that KwaZulu-Natal has now joined the Western Cape as being beyond the reach of the ANC.

In Gauteng, the ANC remains large, but the behaviour of the 17% undeclared voters will have a significant impact. If those voters all vote, and vote non-ANC, this will test Gauteng ANC politics – will it govern with the DA or the EFF; and will it follow national guidelines on this issue, or follow its own path and dare the centre to respond?

Election voter poll rural versus urban support

Rural or urban

Finally, the graph makes it clear that the ANC is fast becoming a rural party. In metropolitan areas the ANC is a minority party at 33%, just 10% ahead of the DA. In peri-urban areas, the ANC fares slightly better, at 38% – but the DA and EFF remain constant, with fewer respondents refusing to answer the voting question and fewer selecting smaller parties. As urbanisation continues apace, this trend can reasonably be expected to grow, and the ANC should be concerned.

In rural areas, the ANC stands at 50% – the DA clearly has little rural purchase; the EFF does better, but no one other than the ANC has managed to capture the political imagination of the majority of rural voters.

That said, the ANC should still worry: rural areas, and predominantly rural provinces, have always been its most loyal base. But when it can only muster support in the upper 50% range in Limpopo (59%) and the Eastern Cape (57%) – and drops below the 50% threshold in every other province – all the trends are bad news for the ruling party.

Finally, the EFF performance is important – but is not a profound change to electoral politics, despite media attention and speculation. EFF support remains constant whether metropolitan, peri-urban or rural. It has grown in every province, but is stuck well below the 20% mark nationally, though it has breached that figure in Mpumalanga (27%) and North West (22%).

It is outperforming the DA in four provinces, and may soon challenge the DA as the official opposition in South Africa. Yet the growth of the party is far from stellar: it is incremental, growing by a couple of percentage points here and there, and seems to have a vote ceiling just as the DA does.

As the ANC decays, the DA and EFF are fighting hard – but neither is able to persuade more than a fifth of voters (nationally) to vote for them. The new parties are barely registering on the voting map.

The new world is indeed struggling to be born. DM

David Everatt is a Professor at the Wits School of Governance.

Gallery

Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • DA is going to lose the WC because they denied us a referendum on independence! We’re voting the Referendum Party!

    • Sydney Kaye says:

      Great idea. Except that instead of independence you may end up with an ANC coalition governnent.

    • Smanga Z says:

      Before you even attempt to participate in political discussions, you need to be very knowledgeable – something that you’re clearly not. First, you need to understand how the Constitution and the democracy of SA works. The DA has zero say on whether to have a referendum. Absolutely zero. Once you overcome that hurdle, you will know that your attitude towards the DA on this issue is misplaced. You’re in the dark, and it’s sad that we have such low quality voters who don’t know much about anything. They only have a computer and a keyboard

  • Tumelo Tumelo says:

    “Show me a good loser and I’ll show a loser”- this sums up the DA. The settler ideology they have displayed since the last general election has just been plain stupid. The choice to appease the tiny non-black electorate through dog whistle politics and the neglect of the coloured electorate in the province in which they govern has been breathtaking to watch. You have political leaders who can’t discern the difference between tactics and strategy- they were never serious about winning any election and with that they will be perennial losers, which says an awful lot with a ruinous ANC self-cannibalising.

    • William Kelly says:

      And they persist with the dinosaur Zille and a foppish Steenhuizen. They need to get over themselves, but they won’t. They will see this election as a win, against an ANC that has done every possible thing to remove itself from power the DA has barely grown and will now lose the WC. They are a political disaster, worse than the ANC. Good administrators but useless politicians. So frustrating.

      • The Proven says:

        Frankly if we had good administrators accross the board, South Africa would look dramatically different. Say what you want, DA has proven their ability to govern, which in my book tips the scale.

        • Sydney Kaye says:

          That was Willim Kelly’s point. “Good administrators but useless politicians.”. People vote by perception not by results. And the perception of Steenhuizen is a disaster. The WC could be in trouble because of the arrogance of those who can’t see how bad he appears.

          • Eberhard Knapp says:

            Not only the perception – he himself is a disaster. autocratic white man who thinks he is the best, sadly.

      • Roy Haines says:

        I agree with your comments re Zille and Steenhuizen, the DA needs the likes of Hill-Lewis and Pappas to give it that youthful surge. However, I still feel that they are in a strong position to take 50% plus of the WC vote.

      • Denise Smit says:

        One of the small big intelligent men Helen Zille bashing to make you fashionable. Show us a party better able to govern. This is about saving the country and you are filling into the optics trap, not so bright in the end. You and your ilk will lead to the downfall of the country. Who are you supposed to critisize in this article. As far as I can see the ANC is the biggest loser. But you go at the DA. Not so very strategically thinking do you know for saving out country. That is what is good about the ANC. They do not throw mud at each other, while we other parties do. Action SA comes to mind and people so called wanting to change SA like you

        • Sydney Kaye says:

          You are making the mistake in thinking fit to govern is the same as fit to win an election. The ANC is bad at the former and good at the latter, whereas the DA is the opposite. Tough politicians know there is no point in having good policies if you can’t get into government.

    • J vN says:

      “Settler ideology”, eh?

      Most of the DA’s voters aren’t, ahem, settlers. But hey, it must be nice living on Planet EFF, where reality and the facts are things that only settlers experience.

    • J vN says:

      And just by the way, judging by your name, you too are a settler, whose ancestors displaced the Khoi and San at more or less the same time the Dutch and British arrived. When are you returning the Khoi’s stolen land?

    • Middle aged Mike says:

      Funny how so many black folk vote with their feet by streaming to the to the WC despite it’s ‘settler ideology’. Whatever that actually means, it seems to have an allure for the destitute of the neighbouring provinces who have benefited from 30 years of whatever ideology it is that holds sway in those parts.

    • Veritas Scriptum says:

      You are 100% correct.
      Even as an older white male I have had to let go of the past and embrace genuine change.
      I have become repulsed by the DA’s blindness to SA’s demographic reality and their continuing silo elitist mentality. This will be the first election where I will not be voting DA.

      • Denise Smit says:

        Who will you vote for for good governance with a proven record?

        • Eberhard Knapp says:

          The Western Cape is fine – but who would want a Steenhuisen as President?

          And the poll shows that clearly – many of us have left the DA BECAUSE of Steenhuisen.

          • Paddy Ross says:

            When will South Africans stop being obsessed with personalities but become more focussed on the policies of a political party? It is the policies of the party that determine whether you live in a city that fixes potholes, mends leaking water mains promptly, etc. or live in a Joburg or Durban which have become disaster areas because of incompetent corrupt governance.
            The same applies to rural areas. Just look at what the DA is achieving in the KZN Midlands.

        • Eberhard Knapp says:

          How about Maimane? Or Mashaba? Or…? Certainly not Steenhuisen…!!

          • Paddy Ross says:

            Steenhuisen has stated publicly that if the MPC displaces the ANC in government it is not assumed that he would be President. Vote for the policies of the DA, not for the office holders.

  • paul Volker says:

    Those results don’t seem credible to me. That degree of collapse in ANC votes seems way overstated, and the DA will easily get 50% in WC.

    • J vN says:

      Agree completely. Emeritus professor in politics at Unisa, Pieter Labuschagne, recently pointed out that these polls are always wildly wrong. It would be completely unprecedented for the ANC to collapse to 42% or so, given that the swings are usually around maximum 5%. There is no way the ANC’s support is going to crash by 12 to 15%. Furthermore, this article fundamentally contradicts itself. It states that only 49% of voters bothered to vote last time, but then the poll alleges that only 7% maximum won’t vote. You simply cannot take these polls seriously at all. The more realistic scenario is that the ANC will remain just above 50% nationwide, which is in line with historical vote swings.

      • Greeff Kotzé says:

        Keep in mind that the quoted 51% stayaways in the previous general election include those who chose not to register to vote (estimated at 9.15 million citizens, or 25.5% of the eligible population/half of the 51%).

        The official election turnout was just over 66%, so that means around 34% of registered voters did not mark their mark at the voting booth (another 9.07 million citizens, or 25.3% of the eligible population).

        It does not say it explicitly here, but these polls tend to only include those that answer “Yes” to the initial screening question along the lines of, “Are you registered to vote or intend to register to vote in the upcoming elections?” So they’re not counting that first group of 9.15 million in the first place (and it’s more people now — the voters roll only increased by 0.7 million between 2019 and 2024, while the eligible population likely increased by at least 3 million; some say 4 million).

        Still, that does leave the other ~25% of registered non-voters included in these polls, and it’s interesting that this one instead reports an undecided+unwilling rate in the region of, what, 15% on average, nationally? Which leaves three possible conclusions:
        — the methodology is somewhat flawed, as you suggest,
        — voting enthusiasm is currently higher among registered voters than in 2019, and/or
        — people are more likely to “vote” in opinion polls than they are to vote in the election.
        In all likelihood, the correct answer may be “all of the above”.

    • Mbulelo Journey says:

      I agree, that is a massive collapse for the ANC, I also don’t see the DA doing that badly either especially in the WC. Something between 47%-52% is where I think the ANC will end up.

    • Camille Augustus says:

      The Western Cape has the biggest
      Moslem population in the Country, many of whom voted DA. Their closed eyes, flip flapping and dismissal of the genocide matter nationally is going to hurt them in the Western Cape. They’ve ignored it, at their own peril. Like it or not, whether you support the cause or not, the message in communities is now “a vote for the DA is a vote for genocide”.

      • Devan Pillay says:

        Correct. The DA’s clear moral posture on Ukraine magically evaporated when it came to Palestine — leading to one of its most belligerent advocates, Cachalia, a major catch from ANC struggle royalty, to resign in disgust. Going around the city and painting over Palestinian murals just adds to the perception that it does not care.

        The DA can no longer point to the ANC and scream “hypocrisy “, when fingers are pointing back at them. Voters who care about the suffering of Palestinians – Muslim and Christian (this is not *in essence* a religious matter, but one of colonial occupation, as is Ukraine) – will look elsewhere….

  • Willem Boshoff says:

    9000 respondents is not enough to give a broad, representative analysis if you sample from rural, urban and metropolitan areas. that said, one cannot but reflect on the great missed opportunity for the DA as the ANC’s demise is not benefiting them in any meaningful way. The EFF’s continued, albeit slowing rise is deeply worrying in an era of globally rising populism and extremism. The many small parties do not offer any real prospect for improvement; to the contrary, they make coalition politics messy and create more instances where the tail wags the dog. despite the PR disappointments in the DA they remain the only viable alternative to the ANC in terms of the ability to run provincial and national government, and they will run it well to the benefit of all South Africans. register and vote people!

    • Eberhard Knapp says:

      Correct!! It is the EFF we should worry about.
      How about President Mashatile and Minister of Interior/Finance Honorable Julius Malema?
      And that would be thanks to Steenhuisen – alone!!

  • Gareth Dawson says:

    I have zero background in reading polls, but this analysis seems incredibly flawed. I’m just analysing the WC figures below, but I am sure this will translate to the other provinces.

    “This downward trend started in 2019, when the DA won a respectable 56%, but down from the 59% in 2014. The current 42% is a quite remarkable drop given the ongoing media coverage of Western Cape governance as the national gold standard – voters seem not to agree.”

    According to the chart displayed, the DA is polling at:
    – 47% of the vote
    – 51% of decided voters.

    You cannot count people who do not intend to vote as they would not be represented in the final tally.

    I agree with the analysis that this is showing a significant downward trend for the DA in the Western Cape. However, with my limited knowledge (I barley passed matric) I believe Professor Everatt has misread the statistics.

    Hopefully someone can show me where I am going wrong.

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      You’re completely right. It’s not that the Prof is misreading the poll data — he knows exactly what they mean — but he is being overly dramatic in his written analysis, and the first few sentences of each section is just catastrophizing the incumbent party’s situation. It’s plain silly to draw a direct comparison between decided voters only and the previous election outcome.

      But as you keep reading, he gets to the “meat and bones” of it, and you can tell that he knows exactly what he’s talking about. It’s just clickbait, I guess, without being an outright lie.

      • Greeff Kotzé says:

        P.S. Gareth used “decided voters” to mean “people who have decided that they intend to cast a vote”, I think. And then I used it with the meaning of “voters who have already decided which party they shall vote for”. (Just in case it causes confusion for anyone.)

  • Shaun Gunter says:

    Which polls do we believe ? They vary and fluctuate wildly.

    • virginia crawford says:

      And have failed to predict winners in most countries. A waste of space and possibly a self fulfilling prophecy.

    • virginia crawford says:

      Will Steenhuizen resign and Helen Zille be banished if they lose votes? They put people off.

      • Denise Smit says:

        But they see that where they rule services are rendered. What do you want people who say what you want to hear in the tone and language that you want , or a not failed state. You are also a Zille basher in spite of her amazing leadership record. You are also depending on males and their way of doing it to make you world work

      • Bryan Bailey says:

        I fail to understand why voters will not vote for the DA because of Steenhuizen and Zille. They are 2 people in the DA & minor in terms of the number of DA members & voters. People must look at the BIG picture, not personalities.
        The ANC technically should have a vote of LESS THAN 8% as they have caused the demise of SA Inc. Full stop. This is not an election of personalities but the ABILITY TO DELIVER, which the ANC failed miserably. SA Inc is in a shi(r)t hole. The lives of rural voters other than electricity (when available) has not improved since 1994 and why continue to vote ANC, under the current circumstances, beyond me. It has to be a cultural thing , of tribalism, I think. If Western Cape deliver services, then vote for them as that what people want. The Umgeni Municipality as is Mid Vaal & others (DA) receive UNqualified Audits, as being successful, so that has ABSOLUTELY nothing as to who the politicians are, BUT the people who work there. They are Black, Coloured, Indian, Other, and White and get on with the work they are given with the merit based people elected to do so.
        So lets be clear, that this election is NOT about politicians BUT the ability to take SA Inc back to being the POWER HOUSE of Africa, where we belong.
        The ANC & most of the smaller parties, for some, maybe the profits (freebies) of what being in parliament is in their minds. The MPC (Multi Party Charter) is what this election is about. Who is the Leader, who cares, get on and SAVE SA??

        • Johan Buys says:

          Publicity of leaders does matter. For all his many faults, Julius is the reason the EFF is around 15%

          The DA needs somebody that is that good at grabbing the public’s attention.

        • Paddy Ross says:

          The most sensible comment so far.

        • Greeff Kotzé says:

          The many valid gripes aside, the unpopular truth (unpopular around these parts, anyway) is that the lives of black people in just about every rural area HAVE improved since 1994, in some cases greatly. Refusing to acknowledge that will not lead any opposition party to victory. The voters they are courting will not believe that the sky is green just because those talking at them insists that it’s so.

          In the 1996 census, 23% of the SA population had matric or higher education. In 2022, it was nearly 50%.
          In 1996, 16% of South Africans lived in informal dwellings. By 2022, it was halved, at 8%.
          In the 1996 census, 45% of the population had piped water inside their homes. In 2022, it was just under 60%.
          In 1996, just under 50% of South Africans made use of a pit latrine or worse for sanitation. By 2022, that was almost halved, to 25.6%.
          Inconvenient stats that don’t suit the narrative cannot simply be denied; people have lived through these changes.

          I still say that a successful opposition campaign will be centred around a starkly different message: “Yes, much progress has been made since 1994, and the lives of South Africans are objectively better now. But how much better COULD IT HAVE BEEN if a truly competent and capable government had been in charge? For every opportunity that was utilised, how many other opportunities were missed?”

          It may seem like semantics… a small distinction to make. But it’s an important one, if one’s aim is to truly get people on board.

  • Steve Davidson says:

    The DA are still doing a fantastic job in the WC despite some of the comments here. Their trouble is that they are victims of their own success in having to keep on pleasing too many people. The fact that Zille’s ‘economic refugees’ are still rolling in from the ANC’s total failure in the Eastern Cape – FFS something like two and a half million in Khayelitsha alone now! – means more and more of the reducing budget (thanks to the ANC national ‘government’) has to be spent on them (FFS again, some idiot was complaining on the radio that there weren’t any swimming pools there!) so it can only get worse. I totally and utterly understand why the so-called Coloured people are hacked off, so hopefully their vote going to their party might mean a coalition government in the province and Cape Town might actually work out OK. Fingers crossed.

    • BT Ohlange says:

      The people you are describing are South African citizens. They have a right to go anywhere they like in this country, just as you do. Urbanization is a natural and normal part of economic development. It was artificially restricted for decades by economically illiterate nationalists, the right wing equivalent of Mao’s Cultural Revolution.

      People always say the DA is good at governing. But when you dig deeper its always about fixing potholes and doing admin. Those things are important, but what the vast majority of the population want is ‘governing’ to mean provision of services. You are right that the DA can only do so much without national government on board – they need to fight for more support for Cape Town. But what is so unfathomable is how none of you DA supporters seem to understand you need to fight *with* those citizens moving to Cape Town, not against them.

      The DA should be advertising for *more* people to come to Cape Town, the best run city in the world, and to join the fight for housing and services by voting DA. They always mess up the messaging right at the end, by alienating the voters. If these were American politicians, they would be calling these people ‘Dreamers’ and making ads about the beautiful personal stories and work ethic motivating them. It’s so disappointing that the Democratic Alliance can’t seem to muster up the emotional intelligence to do this.

      • Eberhard Knapp says:

        Agree fully!

      • Bryan Bailey says:

        What is your solution, as I think you are just looking for negatives?
        Let it be said, there will always be who look on the positive side of what is happening on the ground, not the rhetoric.
        Most logically, the ANC has failed SA Inc in every government department, hence the mess we are in, so to vote for the ANC for another 5 years is stupidity. Let others take over and then see the difference. Thereafter rethink if that is feasible? And please pretty please, don’t attack me for what is logical thinking as opposed dreaming that the ANC can improve as after 30 years they Cannot.

      • David Le Page says:

        Good points, BT.

  • Deon Schoeman says:

    What is most mind boggling is that there are still 50% of SA’ns that STILL vote for the ruling party DESPITE the mess the country is in !!! How is it even possible ? and what is it saying about SA’ns …..

    • BT Ohlange says:

      It is not 50% of South Africans. It is probably less than a third of South Africans above 18.

    • District Six says:

      People vote for different reasons. It’s called democracy. You may not like the way I vote, or anyone else, but that is what it is. And, your view of the mess may not look like it from the other side of the slum. I will be voting to save us from the zille/steenhuizen cartel. If you don’t like it, then offer me something better. But this is the nature of the DA arrogance. No one in their right mind wants “President Steenhuizen.” The DA is chasing 8% of the population; how do they expect to rise above 19%? Then their problem is also maths. They will never govern on 8% of the demographic.

      • Devan Pillay says:

        Spot on. Clearly, many DA supporters are living in bubbles. Hence they think those voting ANC are “stupid”. No, it is perceived self-interest, and distrust of the perceived Whitist politics of the DA, as it tilts Right to win back voters lost to FF+.

        Except in places like Howick, where Pappas seems to be doing wonders. Howickthough is far away from the Zille-Steenhuisen axis 🤷🏾

  • vjbergh says:

    If the ANC/EFF take more than 50% together in GP it is game over for GP.

  • Carsten Rasch says:

    This poll reveals that we are as divided as ever, along racial/ethnic lines. Tragic really, but completely understandable, as this is what the ANC has been perpetuating. When will we grow up and start voting on real issues? Not anytime soon, apparently…

    • Middle aged Mike says:

      I’d suggest that the ANC didn’t need to do anything to divide us along racial/ethnic lines as that’s how we are. Tribalism is our way.

    • BT Ohlange says:

      You are being too cynical. South Africa is very far from voting along tribal ethnic lines.

      We do not have any of the following: a Venda party, an Indian party, a Sotho party, a Tswana party… the majority of our ethnic groups vote within the same parties. The ANC has lost the diversity it used to have on race – but race is not the only lens. We have a President from a minority tribe, and the NEC is ethnically very diverse. And on race, things are worse now because they used to be better – Coloureds and Indians have always been well represented at the very highest levels in the ANC, and there have been prominent Whites as well.

      The DA has its problems, but it is also diverse. They inherited the voters of the National Party, but today they are 1/3 black. The DA’s spin off, ActionSA, strikes me as post-racial. I’m not even sure which group would ‘own’ that party by race or tribe or anything else. ActionSA is even outright against BEE.

      The only ethnic parties are those that appeal to the huge language groups, and they are an ever declining and limited fraction of the electorate. In fact, I would argue the success of the ANC in the early 2000s was precisely due to the cynical mentality of the then opposition trying to carve up the country into right wing racial and ethnic groups. What South Africans *want* is a post-racial, post-tribal, left wing party. I am not left wing, but it’s clear that that’s what the voters want.

      • Middle aged Mike says:

        “You are being too cynical. South Africa is very far from voting along tribal ethnic lines.”

        Really? Remember ‘100% Zulu’ t-shirts? Where in the world could those be acceptable let alone successful campaign prop in a country not obsessed with ethno/tribal identity.

        • District Six says:

          You will find them handed out right next to the “100% Boer” tee-shirts.

          • Middle aged Mike says:

            Not sure those have ever had anything to do with an election and if they did they would have been utterly useless. As I’m sure you’ll remember the ones I’m referring to were produced as worn as part of the mobilization of Zulus in support of the charming Mr Zuma’s bid to take the presidency from the guy they said was part of the Xhosanostra.

    • Colin Braude says:

      If you re-look at the July 2021 violence, a clear pattern emerges:
      1 The so-called RET faction tried to revive rolling mass action.
      2 It worked, up to a point, in KZN, but then
      3 The home-owners of Phoenix defended their homes (sadly with violence)
      4 In Gauteng, the taxi-drivers and others who depend upon the township malls economy also pushed back.

      While 3 is contentious and had unfortunate violence, it represented, as does 4, a break with ANC-lens race politics, with people acting from _economic_ class interests. This is a major change in our political landscape and, while overlooked by DM and the rest of the chattering class, is a sign of a maturing democracy. It took just over forty years (the time spend by Moses in the wilderness) of apartheid for de Klerk’s 1990 speech ending apartheid — or three decades of Prog opposition. We are now three decades in to Corruptheid and the ANC is having similar splits as did the apartheid regime.

  • Athol Rowan says:

    Very sad that the DA politicians put personal power above the country. They got rid of Mmusi Maimane because they lost ground in the 2019 general election, 1,4% decline. This was in the aftermath of the Ramaphosa popularity at the time.
    The Steenhuizen and Zille duo took power and look where we are now. Steenhuizen is living in a dream world if he thinks he could become president.
    The Cape guys are doing well but are suffering from the negative view held by the voters of Steenhuizen and Zille.
    If only they would go and go cap in hand back to Mmusi Maimane to take over and then disappear.

    • Denise Smit says:

      So you also want optics ahead of good governance. You are still willing to take chances instead of standing together to ensure a strong opposition. Not very strategically

      • Sydney Kaye says:

        Again I have to bring you down to earth. Optics is what wins elections. Even in developed democracies the winner can be by virtue of one photo opportunity or one comment. Remember Hilary Clinton and “dispicables”

        • Middle aged Mike says:

          Yes, people are stupid all over the world but only in a place as over endowed with stupid as msanzi do we carry on voting for people who have been stealing us blind for 30 years because of the colour of their skin and the niftyness of their dance moves.

        • David Le Page says:

          Yes, I would vote Democratic in the US, but have never understood the reverence for Clinton, or that party’s apparent contempt for its own support base.

    • Daniel Bower says:

      I disagree. The DA had every right to be angry after losing support with Mmusi Maimane. People talk about Ramaphosa’s popularity as an explanation, but fail to realise that the ANC still had the largest (I think) drop in their support in any national election before, also dropping below 60% for the first time in any national election. Also, the EFF grew by around 4%. Mmusi Maimane not only failed to garner the significant votes leaving the ANC, he also failed to consolidate the DA’s white vote (it would be fine but there was unnoticeable growth in their black vote), and also failed to effectively use the momentum built by the gaining of several cities by the DA in the 2026 elections. Mmusi Maimane would probably be doing a better job than John now, but we don’t really know, and it would make absolute sense for the DA to want a new leader.

      • Greeff Kotzé says:

        It was premature overreaction — the equivalent of pulling the team captain from the field a mere halfway through the first half when the team is just one point down.

        But what is worse is that their “alternate solution” was to offer no new ideas, no winning strategy, just poorly-executed backtracking. And they never did gain those FF+ voters back, anyway, while many of their most ardent supporters at that time saw the regression and deeply flawed strategy as a grave betrayal to the promise the party once held.

  • P C Hem says:

    The reality for South Africa is the same for all Sub Saharan African States governed and ruled by native Africans, economic failure and endemic corruption. There was European colonisation and then there were huge loans by Western banks and then there was huge amounts of Western aid and then there was the Chinese belt and braces colonisation. They have all failed and South Africa will fall also. All this talk of the ANC being corrupt ignores the fact that all sub Saharan African governments are endemically corrupt. South Africa will just continue to go down the road of Zimbabwe, just with more violence.

    • BT Ohlange says:

      Botswana is a Sub-Saharan African State governed by native Africans, and which had much less exposure to colonial governance than its neighbours. Botswana has been a liberal democracy with relatively low levels of corruption since its founding, and is only faltering now.

      European institutions and the heritage of their philosophies are a good thing, and most Africans have historically recognized that. Colonialism is *not* equivalent to the absorption of the institutions and ideas of European society. Colonialism was, far more often than not, the process which undermined the creation of Western societies in Africa. The founders of the ANC were typical English gentlemen, and they wanted to create that kind of liberal-conservative society in South Africa. But the greed of the colonial governments and racism of the Afrikaner nationalists stopped that project, purposefully de-educated and de-Westernised them.

      The conflation of Western-origin institutions – liberal democracy, rule of law, science – and the specific system of governance called Colonialism is a terrible misattribution fallacy. Colonialism was the enemy and the destroyer of everything good that was Western in Africa. And the inability of the colonial rulers to yield to reasonable demands for rights is what opened the door to Marxism and Communism, which are the true causes of our economic malaise in Southern Africa.

  • Middle aged Mike says:

    “Rather than blame the voters, it is more accurate to say that no party has offered anything near enough to energise and mobilise these voters.”

    The way I see it is that most voters are looking for things other than clean and effective governance that converts tax revenue into infrastructure and services for citizens. If they were, there’d really only be one realistic option at the moment. That ridiculous promises, dance moves and party themed clothing worn by inexplicably wealthy party bosses remain in constant and high demand in our part of the world can and should be blamed on voters.

    • BT Ohlange says:

      Politics has never been and never will be a technocratic exercise in meeting performance targets. At least not in a liberal democracy, which South Africa is.

      It has always been a highly emotional and fierce argument over values and principles, mostly mediated through symbolism and spectacle, where policy platforms usually serve the role of virtue signalling and political-tribal identification.

      Objecting to play the game of personalities and dance moves because you see it as beneath you doesn’t make you a better politician, it makes you the equivalent of a garbage man who refuses to handle rubbish or a doctor who objects to the sight of blood or filth; it makes you bad at your job.

      The DA’s future hinges on people like Chris Pappas, who have the emotional intelligence to sound like normal human beings and connect with people in terms they understand in order to bring them along on the technocratic objectives. People who can dance and sing and wear colourful clothes. It does not hinge on the South African population magically becoming the first in the English speaking world to suddenly embrace purely rational, technocratic politics and abandon emotion in politics.

      • Middle aged Mike says:

        That may be true here but it certainly isn’t universally the case. In many other countries what comes out in the news about our government’s malfeasance in a week would cause them to be voted out of power at the next elections. The way we do tribal democracy leaves the purveyors of dance moves and natty oufits in a position to be in power, and that as most of us can attest to, results in fantastically sub-optimal results. Voters who value spectacle over delivery deserve what they get and us saffers have earned our electoral outcomes fair and square.

    • Eberhard Knapp says:

      The DA is capable and competent – but it has chased away leaders with the wrong colour of the skin – Maimane, Mashaba, Dr. Phalatse .
      And given preference to a settler-leader. So don’t be surprised if the majority group would feel very uncomfortable with voting for the DA. Thanks, John!

      • Middle aged Mike says:

        What’s this ‘settler’ twaddle? Other than the Khoisan precious few of us can claim to have been in these parts for much more than 450 years at a stretch. If you what you mean to say is ‘white’ why not just do that.

        • Greeff Kotzé says:

          Newsflash: Africans do not see migration across borders that were not created by them — and before those borders even existed — as equivalent to an “invasion” from another continent, and likely never will.

          But keep at it, maybe one day you’ll win.

          Unfortunately in the meantime, the rest of us have to pay the price because pointless narratives like these — as pointless as doubling down on “colonialism was not ONLY negative” — are putting the brakes on a sorely-needed coming-together amongst moderate centrist voters.

  • Helen Lachenicht says:

    “the first headline is that in this poll, the DA has lost its majority status in the Western Cape”: As the saying goes, “It is not over until the fat lady has sung”

  • Johan Buys says:

    Lesson from the analysis : we must all do everything we can to get as many people as possible to go vote for any party except the ANC or EFF.

    • Smanga Z says:

      Canvassing people to vote against something in stead of for something is a fallacy as a strategy to win. Convince them to vote for you. Not against someone else. I’d think this is all common sense.

      • Johan Buys says:

        What I mean is we, that are not politicians, cannot tell others who to vote for, but we can point out who not to vote for and then provide transport to anybody not wearing an ANC or EFF T-shirt 😉

        • Greeff Kotzé says:

          Perhaps. But I’d agree with Smanga that offering some actual inspiration — even if the purveyor is just a garden-variety party supporter — gets a lot more mileage in elections.

  • stitus01 says:

    Absolutely. Independence supporters couldn’t really care about a negative outcome as long as they “punish” the DA for not agreeing to a referendum.

  • Rae Earl says:

    The canvassing for votes in the run-up to election day is going to escalate rapidly. Hey Ramaphosa, time to get off your dithering backside and give us a date. This is going to be a fascinating period and as things unfold, SA citizens will know whether to be concerned (ie coalition government), scared (ANC retains power), or terrified (EFF wins). The only party which doesn’t fall into this fear-filled ambit is the DA but they urgently need to project a multi-racial party image to dispel the (untrue) aspersions of both the ANC and the EFF which paint the DA as being predominantly white party hell-bent on returning to apartheid rule. This is patently impossible but is difficult to refute in the face of the current ongoing anti-white rhetoric by both Ramaphosa and Malema. Neither has any desire to improve South Africa. Both are known to be corrupt and eager to enrich themselves at the expense of tax payers.

  • Alan Stevens says:

    I am trying to contact ActionSA ?? There is no general enquiries email or telephone number. Can anyone help?

  • Smanga Z says:

    If you believe these polls, then you’re in Koo Koo land. There are far to many variables to even start to consider this as being credible. The inherent bias of people responsible for the poll is the first hurdle. This isn’t scientific. Secondly, the sample is waaaaay to little, a lousy 9000 people in a country of about 27.2 million registerred voters is laughable as a sample. Thirdly, the mindset/decision of the people that were used a sample may very well change. Some were not even being honest about who they will vote for. I know that in the past I’ve changed my vote a week before the actual voting day. Take these polls with a pinch of salt. Or throw them in the bin because they are useless. The anc secured more than 10 million votes in the last elections, leaving the second placed DA with a deficiet of more about 7 million votes. For the ANC to dip below 50 percent, they would have to lose at least 3 million votes from previous election. Highly improbable. You need to look at all previous elections and see the trend. It’s there. Polls mean nothing. Use previous data and form a solid prediction.

  • ST ST says:

    21 September 2021 Ismail Lagardien writes “What have you done for me lately? Despite its outstanding delivery record, the DA is its own worst enemy” this was a call to action for attention to paid to the downtrodden parts of Western Cape which somehow continue to part of the much celebrated DA success. Clearly many are not listening and or reflecting, especially in the leadership. So nothing was learnt then and since. Instead, leaders and supporters find ways to demonise the voter, apologise and condone bad politics, seeking independence, and even liken Khoi displacement to apartheid. Anything but looking in the mirror. Western Cape (the well to do parts) were already full of richer more educated and employed folk. The Western Cape governing formula is not a ‘cut & paste’ for the rest of SA…case in point the poor WC neighbourhoods (as well as the entrenched gangs). So DA rise up to the challenge…that is if you truly believe in a united SA prosperous. SA on the whole has a lot of potential still. That is…if you think you have the stomach to face the apartheid legacy alongside the mayhem that has been the ANC. The ball is and has been in your court ever since…

  • Kristal Duncan-Williams says:

    I believe that the EFF and the DA will continue to hit this ceiling if they continue to focus their energies on convincing voters they are the best choice because they aren’t the ANC- I would love to see campaigning that reflects the merits of what they can/have achieved and then we can clearly see who deserves our vote. For example, as someone who lives in CT and benefits from significantly less loadshedding than the rest of SA- I am baffled that the DA has not used this- how powerful would it be to show how many hours of loadshedding CT had compared to the rest of the country, or how many billions in revenue the CT economy has saved because of the reduced loadshedding. I am not saying the DA is without its problems- but I would think when you have done something well you would want to brag about it…surely??

    • Denise Smit says:

      And what about the roads, health services, municipal infrastructure, job creation, clean government, functioning municipalities. Children being able to read. Why is everybody flocking to the Western Cape. Infrastructure development

      • Joe Irwin says:

        As Kristal points out, why do the DA not make these excellent achievements known throughout the country, to those voters who do not vote, and those who are undecided. As a resident of Ekurhuleni it is heartbreaking to see the deterioration that has transpired over the last decade. The residents of the individual towns that make up the Ekurhuleni are all busy cleaning up their parks and their surrounding areas. Some of these residents are traditional ANC supporters who will probably not vote. The reason for this is that the opposition parties are not doing enough to show who is to blame.

        • Greeff Kotzé says:

          Not quite. They harp on about that quite a lot, actually. But most of the parties have forgotten what the most critical initial step is before you get to all that:

          First building rapport with those you intend to convince.

  • ST ST says:

    Seems like both the apartheid operators/beneficiaries and ANC are reaping what they saw but neither are happy! Unfortunately the vote is the hands of the majority you continue to rob but unfortunately could not (or have not yet) rob them of their right to vote you out and or cause havoc. So sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labour. It’s the other side of the price you paid to benefit from your ill gotten wealth and or privilege.

  • neill hurford says:

    “This downward trend started in 2019, when the DA won a respectable 56%, but down from the 59% in 2014. The current 42% is a quite remarkable drop given the ongoing media coverage of Western Cape governance as the national gold standard – voters seem not to agree.”
    This paragraph is very confusing and bears a bit of explanation – if it’s the DA dropping so radically in the Western Cape then an analysis of this response is called for. In fact, in terms of percentage, the ANC’s drop is less. It could be ascribed to the migration of ANC followers from the northern provinces to the Western Cape in great numbers. They are unlikely to become DA followers so they’re skewing the traditional DA supremacy in the Cape is my guess. Any other ideas?

    • BT Ohlange says:

      I have looked at the raw vote counts in the Western Cape since 1994. Somewhat surprisingly, the ANC’s raw number of votes were as flat as Table Mountain!

      The rise of the DA was entirely a phenomenon due to the collapse of the New National Party, which governed WC in ’94 and ’99. Across the country, you can see the National Party votes decline and then by ’14 the DA equals their ’94 performance, then it dips in ’19.

      The DA has hit its cap. By the standard of global proportional representation, they have done extremely well. The ANC is an outrageous outlier – all the biggest European parties get between 20% and 30% of the vote.

      I think the DA’s proportional decline is down to the rise of the EFF, as well as parties which better represent the interests of its voters. There are many anti-ANC voters in the DA who are, in truth, not liberal and better described as social democrats or left wing. They have RISE and GOOD now. Likewise, some of the old NP voters want an Afrikaans, Afrikaner and/or Coloured party – they have Freedom Front Plus and Patriotic Alliance. And the dissatisfied ‘woke’ or libertarian blacks have ActionSA and BOSA. The EFF does not take DA votes but its slight but consistent rise affects them proportionally.

      It is time for South Africans to absorb that we live under proportional representation. The ANC is an anomaly. The biggest any party will ever get is the DA in 2019 and even that was probably too big. The incentives are against big parties.

  • mikenjo2022 says:

    There is no impetus to change your vote unless your tax is being wasted by the current govt. Maybe I am incorrect, but the majority of rural voters get benefit without contributing much to the fiscus. Whereas those in urban areas are more aware of the service delivery decay and need change .They contribute from their salaries, parts of which are deducted for no show of improvement…for the past 3 decades.

    Everything seems to be going backwards. VW is threatening to move out of SA because rail and port infrastructure no longer functional…which will be a crippling blow to the Eastern Cape and specifically Port Elizabeth / Uitenhage / Despatch, whose income is centered around the motor industry. Millions will suffer as a knock on and tens of thousands will lose there income…things have to change dramatically but for that you need good governance, ethics, accountability and drive to change them.

    • BT Ohlange says:

      Remarkably, if you track ANC vote counts (not vote percentage) since 1994, they have been most stable in the rich urban provinces – Western Cape, Gauteng and growing in KZN – and have lost almost or over half of their voters in the poor, rural provinces – EC, LP, FS and NW. Outside of KZN, they have only grown in NC. MP has been flat.

      The problem with South Africa is that former ANC voters have never had anywhere to go. And the reason for that is that the opposition parties have never treated them as serious people but instead crudely stereotyped them. They are left wing, non-racial, non-ethnic social democrats who like ANC policies and political style, but don’t want corruption and incompetence. Whenever that has been on the table, they pitched up for it (UDM and COPE).

      The reason they stay home is because it was crazy to expect them to vote for the former Apartheid people (New National Party), for Zulu nationalists (IFP), for Christian theocrats (ACDP). DA has been a mixed bag – because they inherited NNP voters and some of that culture, they have struggled to attract black voters. But the DA today is 1/3 black showing that indeed there is a market there. It’s just a tricky market to tap, and I suspect the DA hasn’t had the skill, charisma or funding to truly make a go of it. I suspect the funders and leadership see the msot rural, black, ANC areas as a lost cause.

      • District Six says:

        Yes, 100%, and you can’t publicly call voters “stupid” and then ask them to vote for you when it is election time. Conclusion: the DA doesn’t want our stupid votes.

      • Devan Pillay says:

        Well put. I am that disgruntled former ANC voter (last voted for them in 199) with social democratic sensibilities, and nowhere to go. There a tens of thousands like me out there.

        Zackie Achmat is the closest I can think of but he is one individual.

        Rise Mzansi has not been mentioned here at all. But many people I know are taking a serious look at them — and I see their colourful posters all over the place (well, in Gauteng and Limpopo at least). A surprise package?🤔

  • Geoff Coles says:

    DM staff are mostly living in the W Cape, senior ones anyway…..but seem consistently anti DA

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      This analysis was written by an independent contributor: a professor at Wits.

      DM creates space for a variety of viewpoints, instead of just pushing a singular view of events. That’s why we’re all here, is it not? Well, that’s why I am a regular reader here, at least.

  • Jacci Babich says:

    Will voters- many sadly ignorant and uneducated- consider the most important thing of all? And that is to look at which party is capable of running successful municipalities? The Auditor General Tsakane Maluleke stated that dysfunctional municipalities “fail to meet basic needs and are rife with rampant corruption and mismanagement.” We have 257 municipalities- 8 Metros, 44 District and 205 Local. A disgraceful 32 are under administration, 66 are dysfunctional, and 163 are ‘Distressed.’ Only 38 out of the 257 municipalities received clean audits and 21 of those were in the Western Cape! All of the failing municipalities are run by the ANC except for five. Three of these are run by the IFP, one by the PA and one by the LCF. The “rampant corruption and mismanagement” of the municipalities has resulted in consumers, government departments and entities, owing R255.5 billion. Yet our profligate “ANC ministers” are happy to throw OUR money around on first class tickets around the world, flights to meetings on our few working SAF jets and eye watering millions of rands on court cases meddling in world affairs instead of fixing things at home. Basically we are seeing our corrupt ANC ‘leaders’ siding with anyone who will put money in their pockets so they can remain in power and continue gobbling up our precious resources. They are ignoring the desperate need to replace their blood sucking cadres by putting experienced, honest and capable people in administrative positions to get South Africa back on its feet.

  • Brian Doyle says:

    The DA would increase its size of the vote if it had another leader-one who would appeal to the masses, in other words somebody other than Steenhuisen. If that does not happen the DA will slowly become a non entity. Any party needs a dynamic leader not a professional politician if they want to get voters on their side

  • Grant S says:

    Even if the polls are not particularly accurate and we don’t try to project the nation’s voting behaviour come lection time on the opinion of 9,000 survey participants, it’s frightening to see the significant numbers from within the survey that would vote EFF, a party so obviously devoid of moral character based on the reported and proven scandals as to be literally criminal.

    Is this really the best non-ANC vote that can be cast? Many comments correctly point out that the DA delivers (far from perfectly) better outcomes where they govern, but is constantly shooting itself in both feet speaking in a manner that simply doesn’t resonate with much of SA’s population. That’s a challenge obviously. But the bigger challenge seems to be within the voting public… voting decisions made on a the emotion of a specific issue of the day as opposed to what’s best for SA in teh longer term.

    I find it incredibly sad that the ANC has wonderful policies on many critical aspects of governing, but is completely lacking in the ability to deliver as they’d rather continue down the road of breaking a nation. This is not opinion, their track record speaks for itself and anyone defending the ANC as builders of anything is delusional.

    Does the SA voter have the desire, capacity or interest to understand the issues the country struggles with, and then make an objective decision on where they’ll make their mark on the ballot paper. I fear not.

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      Honestly, the payoff from solving the challenge with the non-voters would be far greater than from swaying some of those who consistently vote. Those who wish to govern would be wise to to focus their energies there.

  • mimshach.bernard says:

    “Desperate times call for desperate measures” – we might yet see vote rigging attempts as there are too many “criminals” and “tenderprenures” that stand to lose their honey pot if the ANC suffer badly in the upcoming elections.

  • paul Volker says:

    Elections for the ANC are more about logistics than politics. On voting day, everyone from national leadership to street committees are focused on getting their base to the polls, they’re a machine!

  • Lyster Whitfield says:

    ” …. no party has offered anything near enough to energise and mobilise these voters.”

    How on earth can any right-minded person, no less a professor studied in the subject, make such an absurd statement? The DA has demonstrated that where it governs it governs well so, contrary to your assertion, the apathetic voters absolutely are to blame. They complain non stop about the state of the country yet sit back and sulk while indirectly contributing to the ANC’S grip on power by not voting. What kind of mentality would deliberately choose ANC governence over DA governence wether they dislike politicians or not?

    Talk about Battered Women Syndrome.

  • You omit to say — as Gareth van Onselen pointed out recently — that while the ANC may well drop below 50% in the national count, it could easily lift itself back over the limit by forming a coalition with one or more parties; far more easily than the DP could form a governing coalittion. So it’s almost certain that an ANC-led coalition will remain in power. Sigh …

  • Diane Salters says:

    The DA may have some credibility in the W Cape, given their practical service delivery, but none at national level. I am watching Rise Mzansi with growing interest and delight. They are reaching young people, bringing fresh faces into politics and stand solid by our constitution. I like their manifesto and I am looking forward to what their innovative selection process of their candidates delivers. I am hopeful for the first time in 25years!

  • Graham Eric Dyson says:

    “Rather than blame the voters, it is more accurate to say that no party has offered anything near enough to energise and mobilise these voters.”
    By this statement, Everatt highlights a short circuit in his and many other people’s logic when it comes to finding excuses for lack of citizen participation in the running of their country. Perhaps Everatt really believes that the political parties are somehow detached from the voters and have their own disconnected identity, but this is where the break in logic lies. People get the government they deserve, some wise person once said. If the voters do not take full opportunity to participate in their own governance, including by getting involved in the parties that are active (but also by getting involved in civic life through NGOs and other bodies), and at the very least by getting off their bums and voting every now and then, then they surely are to blame for the mess that results. It is too glib to blame “the parties” and not to recognise that it is the voters who should be making the party system work properly. And too dangerous to leave governance to a few unaccountable leaders.

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      In an ideal world…

      But the reality is that democracies the world over are driven by a combination of a small number of energetic activists (both for good and for ill) in concert with established incumbent careerists, and a much larger number of party supporters who prefer to abdicate most of their decision making. It’s not unique to SA, it merely presents slightly differently.

      To get things done, you have to work with the system you have, not the one you wish you had.

  • Bucs Mageza Africa says:

    to put the cart before the horse is not ideal, so many factors come to mind before casting that vote, FF+ grew in the previous election yet in journalism it was counted as dead & out, Holomia failed to garner enough votes in the previous election you will be surprised if fortunes turn around so many factors come in handy, one for example the migration of population in EC to GP has quadrupled that it self can play in his favour, ANC as a brand is strong only individuals in the party weaken it thus weakening the voter base as said above so many factors do come in play

  • tcwaonc says:

    Power attracts those most likely to abuse it and then makes them worse. So how do we stop voting for narcissistic psychopaths. There’s a paradox: the planet is a democracy, the humans hate and outnumber the lizards and yet the lizards always get elected. It turns out the humans vote for the lizards for a simple reason: “If they didn’t … the wrong lizard might get in.”

    Maybe, just maybe, that planet is closer to Earth than we’d like to admit.

    We love to hate our leaders. They often deserve our loathing. While the rest of us followed the rules they set,my comrades brazenly broke them.

    Not for the first time, either. In fact, an alien observing modern South African might wonder whether our system of government rewarded those who lied and cheated and engaged in sleaze, so long as they used clever turns of phrase and delivered them with a roguish smirk. For the past 3 years some of our Councillors don’t even know how to say hi or how are you doing my friend/ comrade. Watch them during this coming elections

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      One of the bigger problems plaguing this beautiful country is our tendency to view success and high stature as a virtue in and of itself. As if the attainment of the position is proof of the deservedness of it — the circular logic of the big man syndrome.

      Maybe these so-called leaders act as proxies of our own hopes and dreams for the future — if they fall, then we fall — or maybe we just have an intense need to make it all make sense somehow; that acknowledging that our idols are undeserving of our adulation would trigger a reality shock too great to bear.

      And no single grouping or political leaning has a monopoly on this tendency; if you really examine those around you, you will see it everywhere — from the DA faithful lionizing Zille to JZ’s staunch supporters declaring that they’ll die for him.

  • Fernando Moreira says:

    Imagine not voting for the DA !
    Imagine filling these comment columns in 5years time, that things are even worse with this remarkable ANC record of delivery !
    Good luck South Africa

  • Jurie Welman says:

    I am no statistics genius but a sample of 9000 for a very complex topic where voting behavior is driven by a very diverse set of factors such as state of education, wealth, culture, where you live, age, gender, level of service delivery, availability of transport, to name a few, seems to be too small to be statistically accurate.
    For example, if you start to stratify the data and you start splitting up the 9000 samples between the different influencing variables to ensure that you cover the most statistically significant bases, the number of samples per variable can never be statistically significant. Start with the provinces: 9 provinces give you 1000 per province. Split that up into metro, urban and rural give you 333 a piece. Now split that up into three income categories and you land with 111. (You could add another level for unemployed as a fourth category) Split it up into only two genders and you land up with 56, a third gender will reduce it to 37. Split it up into three age groups and you land with 18 or 12 samples. If you now split it up into the three most dominant cultures, you get 6 or 4 samples. Now split the sample up between three levels of education and you are down to 2 or 1 samples. Then you are still assuming that the voter behavior is similar across all regions, towns or cities in the same province as no allowance made for the fact that behavior between towns or cities will vary. Similarly, no allowance has been made for the fact that the availability of transport will impact on the voting percentage. We don’t know whether the samples are representative of the service levels received or whether the impact of campaigning has been evenly represented in the sampling. For example, the impact of the EFF filling up the stadium in Jhb could distort the outcome of the results in the province.
    In my view I can’t see how these numbers can be accurate.

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      Ironically, I think most “voter sentiment” polls in SA uses a far smaller sample size than this one. I seem to recall 3000 being the most common number.

  • Sarel Lotz says:

    The best for RSA is to get rid of the cANCer

  • Bev Goldman says:

    Whatever the polls, and whatever the outcome, nothing comes close to the recent comments by our esteemed President who stated proudly and loudly that in 1994 only 2,5 million South Africans received social grants, but today a whopping 18 million are blessed with this governmental largesse. How generous – far better to throw crumbs and t-shirts to the masses than to create jobs and give citizens dignity. Cry this beloved country! All the polls, and all the analysis, and all the discussions, will not make even the tiniest dent in the lives of almost 35% of the people – and counting.

  • R W says:

    Middle aged Gen-x’ers of colour like myself have seen the good, the bad, the promise and the failures, happening right in front of our eyes, without the filter and rhetoric of social media.
    With all the parties contesting the election this year and the general acknowledgement of the failings by the ruling parties – the only recourse is too look at the actual manifestos, and what vision a party has other than just being against another party.
    I do this because it is time for a change.
    With retirement looming in the next decade I realise that I am not scared of this change – I am scared of things staying exactly the same and my pension drying up because a politician made an uninformed decision, for likes & votes.
    So reading and sifting through manifestos lead me to a hopeful choice.

    My vote will be small compared to the deluge of votes that will flock to the parties that have the garnered the largest headlines, and got the best hits in.
    But nevertheless when I step into the booth:
    I vote for substance, I vote because of a measured and honest response to an answered question, I vote for a party that will explain How they’re going to do something.

    There is too much shouting, telling me that I MUST do this – so that the other side doesn’t win. And I am so tired of being shouted at through the media and social media.
    I am the quiet voter, who will vote for the How. I will vote for change. And I will vote even though know it won’t make much of difference.
    I vote.

  • Keith85 says:

    I note that President Ramaphosa is confidently predicting that the ANC will comfortably achieve more than 50% of the national vote in the forthcoming elections! Does he know something that we don’t?

    • Devan Pillay says:

      It’s something we all know actually, if we care to look outside our cocoons. The ICJ case, along with our sports and arts triumphs, has created a positive mood in the country — which can only benefit the ruling party, despite all their failures. As long as Cyril, as opposed to the clownish Mbalula, is the face of the ANC (and no matter how hard they try, opposition parties just cannot make the rather weak phalaphala case stick)…

      I am just hoping we can see fresh blood in opposition. Rise Mzansi might be it…🤔

    • Greeff Kotzé says:

      Well, naturally. Forecasting victory, even against the odds, is election strategy 101. Voters like to bet on a winning horse. I wouldn’t read anything sinister into it.

  • bernievn87 says:

    “Reading from the bottom up, the first headline is that in this poll, the DA has lost its majority status in the Western Cape.” It would seem to me that the correct calculation is 42/82 based after subtracting effect of non voters / not saying. This still gives the DA about 51%… The same logic needs to be applied through out.

  • Huff Shi says:

    Where’s the poll’s methodology? Who was interviewed? How were they interviewed? What was the questions?

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