CAPE TOWN – The Democratic Alliance (DA) was the biggest winner in Wednesday’s by-elections in the Western Cape, winning two of the three wards contested.
But the African National Congress (ANC) has retained its overwhelming majority in Ward 101 in Bloekombos, which became vacant after former councilor Luyanda Mbele last year.
While the DA and the African Christian Democratic Party have been taking pot shots at each over alleged bribery claims in ward 31, the Christian party has failed to make inroads in Valhalla Park and Bonteheuwel.
Traditionally, voter turnout in by-elections is low, and Tuesday’s polls were no different.
Still, the DA managed to wrest control of ward 5 in the Berg River Municipality from the ANC with 44.7% of the vote.
It’s also retained ward 31 in the city, which became vacant after the former councilor resigned in support of Patricia de Lille.
DA Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela says: “Despite the challenges, we may have had, we are now turning the corner.”
The ANC says it has mixed feelings about its performance.
Spokesperson Dennis Cruywagen says: “We are regaining our core support and we feel happy about that. It’s not easy to lose. It’s not easy to accept that we’ve lost.”
Ward 101 will now be served by the ANC’s Siyabonga Duka, while Theresa Thompson will represent the DA in Ward 31.
Adam van Wyk will represent the DA in Ward 5 in the Berg River Municipality.