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Thursday, 30 May 2024 16:04

Vote counting under way after contested poll - Electoral Officer.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

The African National Congress (ANC) was on course to lose its 30-year-old unchallenged majority on Thursday after voters queued long into the night to cast their ballots, preliminary results and projections showed.

With a fifth of votes tallied, the ANC was leading but with a score of 44 percent -- well down on the 57 percent it won in 2019 -- followed by the liberal Democratic Alliance (DA) at 25 percent.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) was in third place with nine percent of the vote, trailed by former president Jacob Zuma's uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) on eight.

The final results are not expected to be known before the weekend.

Chief electoral officer Sy Mamabolo says the last ballot was cast in the early morning hours in Arcadia.

Mamabolo has shared an update about the votes that have been captured in each of the nine provinces.

By 4pm (14:00 GMT), results were concluded for 22.6 percent of all voting districts.

A result is considered complete only when a result slip has been scanned, captured onto the results system, audited by independent auditors and goes through the automated results system exception parameters, he said.

The rate of result capture is as follows:

  • Northern Cape – 63 percent
  • Eastern Cape – 58 percent
  • Western Cape – 57 percent
  • Free State – 56 percent
  • Mpumalanga – 42 percent
  • North West – 36 percent
  • Gauteng – 28 percent
  • Limpopo – 26 percent
  • KwaZulu-Natal – 23 percent

Mamabolo said at a news briefing that the commission has seven days to announce the results.

"Historically, in the first 24 hours, 80 percent of the results would have been finalised. However, the process in the 2024 elections has been slowed down by the third ballot, particularly in metropolitan areas," he said.

"According to the Electoral Act, the commission has seven days within which to announce the results. We have always been able to declare and announce the results well within this period and will endeavour to do so even in this occasion."