South Africa’s Independent Electoral Commission is expected to announce official results this week’s presidential and provincial election Friday.
With about 90 percent of the votes counted as of late Thursday, it appears the ruling African National Congress (ANC) is poised to get another mandate to continue its leadership of the country.
This despite allegations of corruption leveled against President Jacob Zuma and complaints that the party of liberation from white minority rule has done very little to help the country’s black majority.
The democratic alliance, the country’s main opposition was a distant second with 23 percent of the vote.
Keith Khoza, communications manager of the ANC, says the vote shows South Africans trust the ANC not just as a liberation party but as an organization that has positively impacted the lives of the country’s poor.
“Remember the ANC is a former liberation movement that is running a third world developing economy which has problems that are typical of all other developing economies. But what is important is that in the 20 years of its governance, the ANC has been able to impact positively on the lives of the poorest of the poor. And that is why they trust the ANC with their vote,” he said.
Schoolchildren walk past a newspaper placard reporting the election victory of Jacob Zuma's African National Congress (ANC) party, based on preliminary results, in the Soweto township of Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2014.
A man walks past an election poster of Jacob Zuma's African National Congress (ANC) party in the Soweto township of Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2014.
Supporters of Julius Malema's opposition Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party who were upset with the election results stage a protest outside the provincial results center for Gauteng province, in Johannesburg, South Africa, May 9, 2014.
Results released by the national election commission showed the African National Congress with about 58 percent and the opposition Democratic Alliance with 28.5 percent after about 3.6 million votes had been counted in the May 7, 2014 general election, Independent Electoral Commission Results Center, in Pretoria, South Africa, May 8, 2014.
The country goes to the polls in the fifth democratically held election since the end of apartheid. Seen in this photo, South Africans queue to cast their votes at sunset near a polling station in the Alexandra township of Johannesburg, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
ANC party members check voters before they enter the polling stating in Mount Fletcher, Eastern Cape, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
The South African president and leader of the African National Congress (ANC), Jacob Zuma, casts his vote in Ntolwane, rural KwaZulu Natal province, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
A woman, with her thumbnail marked with indelible ink to prove that she has voted at a polling station, picks up her identity book in Eden Park, south of Johannesburg, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
Voters dance and sing in the early hours while holding up their identification documents as they queue to vote at a polling station. The station was burned down overnight in the politically sensitive mining town of Bekkersdal, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
South Africans queue to vote as mounted police provide security near a polling station that was burned down overnight. A tent was erected to replace the station in the politically sensitive mining town of Bekkersdal, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
Women sit and wait in queue to cast their votes at an informal settlement in Soweto, South Africa, May 7, 2014.
South African opposition leader Helen Zille, second from left, from the Democratic Alliance, raises her hand during a rally in Rocklands, on the outskirts of Cape Town, South Africa, May 6, 2014.
Khoza said the ANC is returning into office by winning impressively in most the country’s provinces except for the Western Cape Province, stronghold of the opposition Democratic Alliance.
He denied the ANC has done very little to improve the lives of ordinary South Africans in the 20 years that it has been the governing party.
Khoza said the opposition and the media are spreading negative views of the country. Despite inheriting what he called a ‘bad economy’ from the apartheid regime, he said South Africa under ANC leadership is still the best economy in Africa.
“There has been the view that has been articulated by the opposition and the media to some extent, which is not real. If anybody has been to South Africa during the World Cup, they would have told you that South Africa is a well-developed economy. The quality of life of our people has improved,” Khoza said.
He said allegations of corruption in the ANC-led government are untrue. Instead Khoza said the ANC has been fighting corruption left by the apartheid government.
“The ANC has been fighting corruption because what we inherited in 1984 was a largely corrupt government that was run by the apartheid government. The opposition has ignored because they want to politics. And for them to gain power, they have to project the ANC in negative terms,” Khoza said.
He said the ANC has set up institutions like the Public Protector Office to fight corruption.
Butty interview with Khoza