ANC gets two-thirds of vote in South Africa elections (Lead)

April 24th, 2009 - 9:26 pm ICT by IANS  

Pretoria, April 24 (IANS) The ruling African National Congress (ANC) led by Jacob Zuma Friday received more than two-thirds of the vote as the counting neared completion in South Africa’s fourth general elections.
The ANC currently has 67.2 percent of the votes counted. The party was leading in eight of the country’s nine provinces, except for the hotly contested Western Cape province where the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) of Cape Town mayor Helen Zille was leading.

ANC spokesperson Jessie Duarte said: “We are pleased with the way things are going. As you know we have held a two thirds majority for a number of years but for this one we thank South Africans who went out in their millions to vote for the ANC, ” South African news agency BuaNews reported.

“The people have spoken. They understand that if you vote for the ANC, you vote for the future of this country,” he said.

The DA was at second place followed by the newly formed Congress of the People (COPE), a breakaway party of ANC dissidents.

The ANC has nominated Zuma for the post of the president. Parliament will elect South Africa’s next president by a simple majority, putting Zuma in line for the post when the new assembly votes in May.

Charges of corruption against 67-year-old Zuma were dropped by state prosecutors two weeks before the polls.

The election to South Africa’s 400-seat National Assembly and nine provincial assemblies, which was observed by 5,000 domestic and more than 300 international observers, was held Wednesday and passed off peacefully despite minor irregularities.

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