The counting process in Nelson Mandela Bay is nearing completion with 95% of the voting stations counted by 7am‚ the Electoral Commission (IEC) has confirmed.
Party representatives from the African National Congress (ANC)‚ Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) have been milling about at the IEC centre at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
There is no sign of independent candidates.
The DA is in the lead with 55.89%‚ followed by the ANC (36.7%) and EFF (4.27%).
IEC regional supervisor Crosby Bacela said: “The 95% voting stations already counted still needs to be captured‚ scanned and verified by the auditors. Thirty-three% has already been successfully captured and 67% not captured as yet.
“We have areas like Summerstrand‚ Kuyga‚ Greenbushes‚ Motherwell‚ Wells Estate‚ KwaNobuhle and Booysen Park that are still counting. It is difficult to get hold of them as they are not allowed to use cellphones.”
DA mayoral candidate Athol Trollip arrived at the centre at 5am after two hours of sleep.
“It is still early to claim any kind of victory. We have the results from the northern areas and they are really encouraging‚” he said.
“There was a lot of speculation about northern areas and (ANC mayoral candidate) Danny Jordaan having grown up there‚ and that the DA was going to lose there. That is not true‚ results have spoken and it looks like in our traditional voting areas‚ people came out in good numbers. Things look positive at the moment for DA.”
ANC councillor Rory Riordan‚ who was also at the IEC centre‚ advised against predicting results.
“So far we have taken three wards from the DA and one from the UDM. We are actually in the stronger position now. However‚ an election is an unstable thing. Until the IEC signs the documents‚ we don’t know what will be the final outcome‚ but we are not scared‚” Riordan said.
EFF deputy chairman Bo Madwara was in good spirits after learning that the party had won KwaNobuhle Ward 43.
“This is the first time EFF contested the elections and we are very pleased with the votes so far. We are happy that the preliminary results shows that ANC is losing and that we are going to be part of the council‚” Madwara said.