DA takes strong lead in hotly contested metros

JOHANNESBURG - As counting in the local government polls progressed on Thursday, the ANC was holding onto its slight majority, though its count at 7am was slightly lower than an hour earlier, while the DA took strong early leads in all three Gauteng metros, as well as Nelson Mandela Bay.

Just after 7am, with 39% of the vote counted around the country, the ANC was ahead with 51% to the DA’s 32%. The EFF had 6.6% of the vote.

At 6am the ANC’s tally had been 52.54% against the DA’s 29.82% and the EFF’s 6.54%.

In Gauteng, where 10% of votes had been counted by 6am, the DA led the ANC 45% to 40%, with the EFF holding 8.69% of the vote.

In Joburg, where 18% of the vote had been tallied by 7am, the DA had 44% to the ANC's 40% and the EFF's 10%. In Tshwane, the DA was ahead with 48% of the vote to the ANC's 39% with 25% of the vote counted.

At 6am, the counting for Tshwane had showed the DA leading the ANC 48.63% to 39%, and in Johannesburg the DA had led 45.68% to the ANC’s 39.08%.

In Ekurhuleni the DA led 50.46% to the ANC's 37% at 6am.

With about 15% of eligible voters accounted for in Nelson Mandela Bay at 6am, the DA had 56.33% to the ANC’s 34.31%.

With 8,213 out of 22,684 voting districts having reported in by 6am, the IEC’s election map showed surprising inroads for the DA in the Northern Cape, Eastern Cape and even Limpopo.

The ANC's strong support in rural areas, which traditionally report in later than urban centres, is expected to shift the results as the day continues.

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