The latest pre-election poll released by the Institute of Race Relations (IRR) shows that the ANC would garner 49.5% of support with days to go before the 2019 national election.
This snapshot pushes to a maximum of 51% of the vote if two thirds of registered voters cast their ballot on the day.
The IRR poll results show the DA securing 21.3% of the vote, hitting 24% on a 71.9% voter turnout. The EFF showed a marked increase to 14.9% of the vote, dropping to 14% on a lower voter turnout.
The ANC had a 62.2% share of the vote in the 2014 national election, while the DA secured 22% of the vote and the EFF scored 6.4% in the election.
Explaining the drop in ANC support, the IRR said that a host of issues are likely to have had a snowball effect on the governing party.
“In the eight weeks since (the last IRR poll), all parties have rolled out their election campaigns proper. The ANC, in particular, has been beset by ongoing problems.
“These include a series of damning revelations about the party’s secretary general, the continued detailing of various corrupt practices before the Zondo Commission of Inquiry, and a series of national service protests (of which the “shutdown” of Alexandra Township in Gauteng concerned the ANC and DA directly),” the IRR said.
The group also noted that the prospect of further load shedding still remains very real – and all these issues are compounded by a lacklustre ANC campaign.
“None of these factors, in and of themselves, are likely to have impacted definitively on the support for any one party – precedent suggests it takes much time for a single scandal or event to fully manifest in a change in voting behaviour – but collectively they are likely to have had some impact,” it said.
The table below outlines the trend in IRR election polls since September 2018, based on the total national vote (ie, raw poll data, not adjusted for voter turnout).
The poll was conducted between 18 April and 25 April 2019. The sample was fully demographically representative and comprised only registered voters. A total of 2,375 respondents were questioned.
As with all pre-election polls, the findings are not a prediction, but represent a snapshot of the electorate as they stand at any given period of time.
The IRR itself stresses this point, saying that the numbers presented in the poll “are not absolutely definitive”.
The group further points to a 2.8% national margin of error, which means, for example, the DA – which comes out with 21.3% – could be on 18.5% or 24.1%.
“In the last few weeks of an election one does see movement among the electorate, as undecided voters make their final choice and bigger parties,” the IRR said. ” This poll came out of the field with 14 days of the election period still to go, a time during which further change is likely.”
The full table of parties and responses is below:
Looking at all pre-election polls published in 2019 so far, they all show the same key trends: the ANC losing support from its position in 2014, with the DA also dropping (though many polls see the party’s support base remaining fairly flat).
The EFF, meanwhile, is expected to show significant growth – from smaller increased of around 3 percentage points, to more than doubling.
While every independent poll follows this similar trend, the DA’s own internal polling tells the opposite story, according to News24.
The party’s internal polling shows gains among the electorate, polling between 24% and 26%, with the ANC between 56% and 59%.