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Polls Close in South African Elections

  • VOA News

African National Congress (ANC) election posters featuring images of South Africa's President Jacob Zuma are displayed on a wall as a school boy climbs over it in Embo, May 6, 2014.

African National Congress (ANC) election posters featuring images of South Africa's President Jacob Zuma are displayed on a wall as a school boy climbs over it in Embo, May 6, 2014.

Millions of South Africans have cast their ballots in the first nationwide elections to include voters born after the end of apartheid in 1994.

Voter participation was said to be mixed Wednesday, with some polling stations reporting a moderate or heavy turnout. The opposition Democratic Alliance said it expected a strong turnout in urban areas, but the party still struggles to appeal to mainstream black voters.
A look at South Africa:

Capital: Pretoria is the administrative capital, Cape Town is the legislative capital and Bloemfontein is the judicial capital.

Most Populated City: Johannesburg

Official Languages: English, Afrikaans, Ndebele, Northern Sotho, Sotho, Swazi, Tswana, Tsonga, Venda, Xhosa and Zulu

Population: 53 million

Political History:

1948-National Party institutionalized apartheid.
1990-Nelson Mandela released after 27 years in prison.
1994-Apartheid ends after first democratic election.
2013-Nelson Mandela dies at age 95.
Analysts predict the ruling African National Congress (ANC) will capture more than 60 percent of the popular vote. That would clear the way for parliament to elect President Jacob Zuma to a second five-year term.

However, some voters have said they are disappointed with what they view as the ANC's failure to extend basic services, such as clean water and electricity, to all South Africans. Others say they are disgusted by corruption allegations that have washed over the government.

Results are expected May 10.

Rule by the white minority in South Africa ended on April 27, 1994, when the ANC won the first multi-racial elections. Then-ANC leader Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as president the following month.
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