KNYSNA NEWS - Former DA councillor for Ward 11, Lorraine Opperman, has retained her position as councillor for the ward, but is now representing the ANC.
Opperman, whose DA membership was terminated after she voted against the DA's motion to curtail the power of the mayor - which meant she also lost her seat in Council, increased the ANC support in the ward from 29% in the 2019 by-elections to 48,5%.
Opperman’s victory gives the ANC nine seats in the Knysna Municipality Council and helps the current ANC, COPE and KUC coalition to stay in power.
Out of the 1 340 votes counted in the ward, the ANC received 650 votes (48,5%), the DA received 458 votes (34,17%), the EFF got 160 votes (11,94%) and the ACDP received 62 votes (4,62%).
There were only ten spoilt votes.
Opperman told Knysna-Plett (KPH) that she is not only happy about the victory, but also that the DA lost the ward.
“I told the media before we went to the by-elections that I will make it my business to make sure that the DA does not win the ward - and I did,” she said.
EFF candidate Ghita Holtzhauzen said it is now time for the EFF to go to the drawing board as the local government elections are around the corner.
“It was hard to prepare for the by-elections as we did not have enough resources to campaign,” she said.
DA candidate Jack Simons could not speak to KPH as he was in a meeting.
DA Constituency Head Dion George said it was clear from the start that there was one simple choice for the voters in the by-elections.
“It was either the DA or the ANC. The other parties were there just to accompany and yesterday the voters of Ward 11 chose the ANC,” he said.
George said they will contest the ward again on 27 October this year during the local government elections.
“Elections are never over; the DA is preparing for the local government elections. We have learnt a lot from the by-elections,” he said.
Under his Twitter handle @DawieScholtz, well-known election analyst, Dawie Scholtz, summarised the outcome of yesterday’s 14 by-elections countrywide as follows:
1) The swing against the DA in the coloured electorate is still ongoing (in the 10-20% range).
2) The EFF and ANC are roughly holding steady in the black electorate in MP/NW/LM/NC.
3) Big EFF inroads in urban KZN. Watch Ethekwini closely.
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