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Assessing and promoting civil and minority rights in South Africa.

[Source: SABC News by Angela Bolowana.  Read the report here.]

Researchers have warned the African National Congress (ANC) that the longer President Jacob Zuma stays in power, the more costly it could be for the party.

University of Johannesburg (UJ) researchers say anecdotal evidence shows that party president, Jacob Zuma, has lost favour with ANC voters.

The research by the university’s Centre for Social Change looked into the profile of voters in four provinces on election day.

It shows that the ANC is not popular with young people and that what happens in the next election will be determined by what the ANC does with President Zuma. [Read the report here.]

While the President was not part of the questionnaire, his name, however, kept cropping up.

South African Research Chair in Social Change and Director of the Centre for Social Change at UJ, Professor Peter Alexander, says the views on Zuma were unsolicited.

“Even among ANC supporters, they were emphasising this issue which we picked up before that the ANC is a party for Mandela. Now that is a double edged reason as to why people still vote for the ANC particularly older people, but people were also saying we are not voting for the party of Zuma. And indeed a number of people were saying they were voting for other parties because they didn’t want Zuma and even people that were voting for the ANC didn’t want Zuma.”

The university asked 4 000 people from 10 townships in four provinces and one university at  21 voting stations to fill out the questionnaire to understand voting patterns in terms of age, gender, ethnicity, employment status, government provision and protest activity.

The statistics paint an interesting picture. The ANC attracts more female voters, while the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) attracts male voters. The Democratic Alliance (DA) attracts a similar ratio of both sexes.

Ethnicity also contributed to choosing who to support – with some voters going for a leader because he is part of their ethnic group, except for the DA which is still more popular with coloured and white people.

The EFF attracts employed people while the ANC attracts unemployed people.

Shack dwellers prefer the EFF, while those from RDP homes and those who receive social grants prefer the ANC.

The youth vote however belongs to the EFF and the DA.

The research also showed that 14% of the voters changed their votes from 2014.

It also showed that EFF voters were more likely to have participated in a protest. Although the researchers say the results are not nationally representative they argue that they are helpful in terms of analysing the voting patterns of the working class particularly for the much anticipated 2019 national election.

South Africa at a Glance
58 780 000 (mid 2019 estimate)
4.3% y/y in August 2019 (CPI) & +4.5 y/y in August 2019 (PPI)
3.1% q/q (2nd quarter of 2019)
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