Thursday, 21 April 2022 11:29

ANC lose its majority in the unstable Phokwane Local Municipality.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) took a ward from the ANC in Pampierstad, Phokwane in the Northern Cape, while an educator and an independent candidate won a seat from the ANC in the town of Tarkastad in Enoch Mgijima in the Eastern Cape. 

The DA held onto its ward in a very competitive race in Wolseley in Witzenberg in the Western Cape. 

In Wednesday's by-elections, former mayor of the municipality Olebogeng Tumodi, who was axed from the ANC, managed to reclaim the ward he previously held, leaving the ANC with less dominance in the council. 

The EFF won the ward by 56%, compared to the ANC's 43%.

Now Phokwane, which is in the Frances Baard region of the province, has no majority government.

Tumodi was expelled from the ANC earlier this year, after the party claimed he hadn't attended crucial meetings.

The municipality has been unstable and there have been concerns that the instability has impacted service delivery. 

The ANC has now lost its outright majority and will be knocking on the door of the Forum 4 Service Delivery (F4SD) to retain control of Phokwane in a coalition deal. Failing that, the EFF will need to speak to the DA, the PFSD and the Freedom Front Plus (FF+) and hope that the F4SD will back them. The opposition might also agree to coalesce around a party like the P4SD to send the ANC to the opposition benches. 

New Phokwane council composition: ANC 9 (10) EFF 5 (4) DA 2 F4SD 2 PFSD 2 VF+ 1. Total: 19.

The next round of by-elections is in a fortnight, in two metros – Nelson Mandela Bay and Tshwane. The ANC will be defending a safe seat there while the DA will be defending a more competitive seat. This will be the first Gauteng by-election since the local government elections.

The ANC will also defend a competitive seat in Mafikeng and a super-safe seat in Ntabankulu in the Eastern Cape.