DA and IFP re­tain sup­port in by-elec­tions

Zululand Observer - Monday - - ZO NEWS - Gugu Myeni and Larry Bent­ley

THE Demo­cratic Al­liance (DA) and Inkatha Free­dom Party (IFP) re­tained their wards in the mu­nic­i­pal by-elec­tions held in Mthon­ja­neni and Richards Bay last week. With a 26.64% voter turnout in Richards Bay, the DA re­tained the seat in Ward 3 with 67.84% of the votes cast com­pared to 63.49% won in the 2016 mu­nic­i­pal elec­tions. Newly elected coun­cil­lor, Hen­ning de Wet said this win shows an in­creased sup­port for the DA and the man­date to con­tinue serv­ing res­i­dents in the ward. The seat in the uMh­lathuze Mu­nic­i­pal­ity be­came va­cant as a re­sult of the res­ig­na­tion of the party’s coun­cil­lor. The IFP also re­tained its seat in Mthon­ja­neni Ward 3, win­ning 63.63% of the votes cast, an in­crease from the 55.90% the party re­ceived in the 2016 mu­nic­i­pal elec­tions. The seat be­came va­cant when Cllr Mhloliseni Zulu passed away. Zipho Ndlovu won the seat with 1 081 votes, while Ndlovungeke Hlabisa of the EFF and Vusumuzi Bam­biso of the ANC gar­nered a to­tal of 11 and 607 votes re­spec­tively. Of the to­tal 3 779 regis­tered vot­ers, 1 741 votes were cast. IFP Na­tional Cam­paign Com­mit­tee Chair­per­son, Narend Singh said the party showed tremen­dous growth in all the wards it con­tested. ‘The re­sults have been as­tound­ing, es­pe­cially in vot­ing dis­tricts in which we have had a slight show­ing be­fore. ‘Our re­sults in the past three by-elec­tions cer­tainly serve as a spring­board for next year’s Na­tional Gen­eral Elec­tion. The IFP is grow­ing stronger in ev­ery elec­tion,’ Singh said. The African Na­tional Congress (ANC) which had been con­test­ing in both ar­eas, ac­knowl­edged the re­sult and the will of the res­i­dents. ‘As the ANC, we ap­pre­ci­ate the tol­er­ance that pre­vailed amongst the po­lit­i­cal con­tenders in both wards. ‘We also thank all those res­i­dents who par­tic­i­pated in this demo­cratic ex­er­cise. ‘Our coun­cil­lor can­di­dates and all branch lead­ers in the two mu­nic­i­pal wards are to con­tinue ser­vic­ing the com­mu­ni­ties of these wards,’ANC Musa Dladla Re­gion said. In­de­pen­dent Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (IEC) su­per­vi­sor in King Cetshwayo, Thulile Dlamini com­mended the smooth run­ning of the elec­tions in both wards. ‘Although there were ob­jec­tions ahead of the vot­ing re­gard­ing some peo­ple on the roll not be­ing from the area, as the IEC we were able to safe­guard and en­sure ev­ery per­son com­ing in to vote was liv­ing in that ward. ‘Par­tic­u­larly in Mthon­ja­neni, there were about 30 peo­ple that did not vote be­cause they do not live in that ward,’ Dlamini said.

IFP can­di­date, Zipho Ndlovu won the Ward 3 by-elec­tion in Mthon­ja­neni

Hen­ning de Wet was the suc­cess­ful DA can­di­date in Ward 3 uMh­lathuze

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