Major shift in power as coalitions look to give the ANC the boot: report

Coalition talks among South Africa’s biggest parties are ongoing, with reports from inside the negotiations pointing to a massive power shift in the country’s biggest metros.

Headlining the talks is the Democratic Alliance, which is fighting to boot the ANC from controlling major metros, especially in Johannesburg.

While the opposition party has not ruled out talks with the ANC, it says that it makes no sense to work with the party that has been the architect of all the problems key metros face.

According to the City Press, the DA is in coalition talks with newcomer Action SA and the Freedom Front Plus in the City of Johannesburg, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni, to leave the ANC out in the cold. Its objective is to kick the ANC out.

Following the breakdown of its coalitions involving the EFF in the 2016 elections, the DA is working to build tighter structures for coalition governments, where all parties agree on the same rules, policies and methods of dealing with conflicts.

The party is in the process of drawing up formal contracts to deal with coalitions.

For the ANC’s part, insiders report the ruling party is looking to talk to the EFF – though some among the party are favouring a position where it ‘sticks to guns’, avoids the ‘inflexible’ red berets, and instead accepts the role of opposition in metros it has lost.

However, its options may be limited in that many of the parties contesting the elections did so as a counter to the ANC’s failures to deliver basic services. Speaking to the City Press, political analysts said it is unlikely that the ANC will again be able to build enough support – especially among the middle class in Gauteng – to win an outright majority in the metros.

“The middle classes are typically the drivers of political change. In South Africa, they’re concentrated in the big metros and towns. The middle classes aren’t deeply rooted in political loyalty. If the ANC doesn’t change its record of delivery, more members of the middle classes will desert it,” they said.

ANC is still in control

Despite losing ground in major metros, the ANC is still firmly in control.

More than 12 million South Africans cast their ballots to vote for candidates they prefer to represent them in the country’s 257 municipal councils.

The ANC clinched the majority seats in 161 municipal councils, followed by the DA with 13 municipalities closely followed by the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), which now holds majority seats in 10 municipal councils.

The ruling party attracted 46.04% of the overall vote, followed by the Democratic Alliance at 21.84%. The IEC noted that at least 66 municipal councils are hung.

Here are the results for the eight metropolitan municipalities:


Buffalo City – ANC majority

  • ANC: 59.43%
  • DA: 19.52%
  • EFF: 12.06%

Mangaung – ANC majority

  • ANC: 50.63%
  • DA: 25.73%
  • EFF: 11.31%

City of Cape Town – DA majority

  • DA: 58.22%
  • ANC: 18.63%
  • EFF: 4.13%

Ekurhuleni – Coalition

  • ANC: 38.19%
  • DA: 28.72%
  • EFF: 13.57%

Ethekwini – Coalition

  • ANC: 42.2%
  • DA: 25.6%
  • EFF: 10.49%

City of Johannesburg – Coalition

  • ANC: 33.60%
  • DA: 26.47%
  • Action SA: 16.05%

Nelson Mandela Bay – Coalition

  • DA: 39.92%
  • ANC: 39.43%
  • EFF: 6.40%

City of Tshwane – Coalition

  • ANC: 34.31%
  • DA: 32.34%
  • EFF: 10.62%

Read: South Africa under coalition rule

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Major shift in power as coalitions look to give the ANC the boot: report