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Is the IFP set to lose its lead in Mthonjaneni?

IFP set to lose its lead in Mthonjaneni

In 2011, the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) got more votes in the local government election in Mthonjaneni (KwaZulu-Natal) than any other party.

 

It won 46% of the PR votes cast. By 2014 that proportion had fallen to 33%. Projecting changes in voting patterns to August indicates that the African National Congress (ANC) ANC will now get the greatest share of votes and the IFP may become the official opposition.

The actual power balance in the municipality will depend on the ward component of votes but the projections are that the ANC will get more than 47% of the votes. With more votes than any other party, the ANC will be able to form the government for Mthonjaneni.

Should the PR projections be correct, this election marks a turnaround in the fortunes of the IFP in municipal elections as several other KwaZulu-Natal municipalities are in a position similar to Mthonjaneni. The IFP seems set to lose its prominent position in what was once its powerbase, KwaZulu-Natal. In 2011 the IFP received 22% of the PR vote in the smaller municipalities of KwaZulu-Natal. By 2014 that had dropped to 14%.

Unfortunately for the IFP, it is unlikely to benefit from the exclusion of the National Freedom Party (NFP) from the elections. The NFP originally splintered from the IFP and draws on the same constituency. In 2014 the NFP got 2% of votes nationally and 12% of the votes in Mthonjaneni. Although re-winning this support would benefit the IFP it is more likely that many NFP supporters will just abstain from voting in August.

DA may lose its dominant position in Laingsburg to the ANC.

In 2011, the Democratic Alliance (DA) got the highest number of votes in the Laingsburg (Western Cape) local government election. It won 41% of the PR votes cast. In the 2014 provincial/national election that proportion had fallen to 36%. Projecting changes in voting patterns to August indicates that the ANC may get more than half the votes cast. The DA will then become the official opposition.

Given the small margins between the ANC and DA voting shares control of the council will depend heavily on the ward component of the election and the turnout. Nevertheless the PR component of the election indicates that the ANC will, with more votes than any other party, be able to form the government for Laingsburg.

Should the PR projections be correct, this election may mark a turnaround in the fortunes of the DA as several other Western Cape municipalities are in a position similar to Laingsburg. However, the projections rely on voters behaving the same way in election of both types. While voters do tend to be consistent in terms of party affiliation, the elections do differ in terms of turnout rates. Of most significance is that individuals are more likely to vote in national elections than in local elections.

Historically, the lower turnout rates in local government elections have prejudiced the ANC by several percentage points. Obviously, the turnout rate will not be known until after the election. Should turnout in the August election be, as expected, lower than in the 2014 national election the ANC is unlikely to benefit as much as projected. Conversely, the lower turnout will benefit the DA by several percentage points and the prospect of them losing control in Laingsburg may have been exaggerated.

The expectation that the shift in voting patterns may not be as marked as projected is supported by indications that Laingsburg municipality has been performing relatively well. The Auditor general rated the municipality’s adherence to financial requirements highly. Laingsburg received a Unqualified with findings audit for the 2014/15 financial year (the latest year for which data is available). Neither has Laingsburg exhibited the characteristics of a failing administration, it has not been subject to provincial intervention (s139) or had its Equitable Share allocation been threatened. Similarly, ESKOM has not expressed an intention of suspending bulk supplies of electricity to Laingsburg. The Auditor General indicates that only R 54.76-million was associated with unauthorised, irregular or wasteful expenditure.

The financial performance of the Laingsburg administration is such that that the minimum performance criteria have been met in terms of financial administration. This does not indicate that the administration of Laingsburg is necessarily efficient and effective. Nor does it indicate that the services provided are equitable, sustainable or value for money. An assessment of the latter will be expressed by the electorate on 3 August.

The DA to lose its dominant position in Bitou?

In 2011 the DA got the highest number of votes in the Bitou (Western Cape) local government election. It won 49% of the PR votes cast. In the 2014 provincial/national election that proportion had fallen to 44%. Projecting changes in voting patterns to August indicates that the ANC may get more votes than any party but less than half the votes cast. The DA will then become the official opposition.

Given the small margins between the ANC and DA, voting shares control of the council will depend heavily on the ward component of the election and the turnout. Nevertheless, the PR component of the election indicates that the ANC will, with more votes than any other party, be able to form the government for Bitou.

Should the PR projections be correct this election may mark a turnaround in the fortunes of the DA as several other Western Cape municipalities are in a position similar to Bitou. However, the projections rely on voters behaving the same way in election of both types. While voters do tend to be consistent in terms of party affiliation, the elections do differ in terms of turnout rates. Of most significance is that individuals are more likely to vote in national elections than in local elections.

Historically, the lower turnout rates in local government elections have prejudiced the ANC by several percentage points. Obviously the turnout rate will not be known until after the election. Should turnout in the August election be, as expected, lower than in the 2014 national election the ANC is unlikely to benefit as much as projected. Conversely, the lower turnout will benefit the DA by several percentage points and the prospect of them losing control in Bitou may have been exaggerated.

The expectation that the shift in voting patterns may not be as marked as projected is supported by indications that Bitou municipality has been performing relatively well. The Auditor General rated the municipalities’ adherence to financial requirements highly. Bitou received a Clean (Unqualified without findings) audit for the 2014/15 financial year (the latest year for which data is available). Neither has Bitou exhibited the characteristics of a failing administration, it has not been subject to provincial intervention (s139) or had its Equitable Share allocation been threatened. Similarly, ESKOM has not expressed an intention of suspending bulk supplies of electricity to Bitou. The Auditor General indicates that only R 0.36-million was associated with unauthorised, irregular or wasteful expenditure.

The financial performance of the Bitou administration is such that that the minimum performance criteria have been met in terms of financial administration. This does not indicate that the administration of Bitou is necessarily efficient and effective. Nor does it indicate that the services provided are equitable, sustainable or value for money. An assessment of the latter will be expressed by the electorate on 3 August.
The IFP is set to lose its dominant position in Hlabisa.

In 2011 the IFP got more votes in the local government election in Hlabisa (KwaZulu-Natal) than any other party. It won 47% of the PR votes cast. By 2014 that proportion had fallen to 39%. Projecting changes in voting patterns to August indicates that the ANC will now get the greatest share of votes and the IFP may become the official opposition.

The actual power balance in the municipality will depend on the ward component of votes but the projections are that the ANC will get more than 42% of the votes. With more votes than any other party the ANC will be able to form the government for Hlabisa.
Should the PR projections be correct, this election marks a turnaround in the fortunes of the IFP in municipal elections as several other KwaZulu-Natal municipalities are in a position similar to Hlabisa. The IFP seems set to lose its prominent position in what was once its powerbase, KwaZulu-Natal. In 2011 the IFP received 22% of the PR vote in the smaller municipalities of KwaZulu-Natal. By 2014 that had dropped to 14%.

Unfortunately for the IFP it is unlikely to benefit from the exclusion of the NFP from the elections. The NFP originally splintered from the IFP and draws on the same constituency. In 2014 the NFP got 2% of votes nationally and 14% of the votes in Hlabisa. Although re-gaining this support would benefit the IFP it is more likely that many NFP supporters will just abstain from voting in August.

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