​Record number of political parties contesting 2019 polls

A new evangelical Christian political party with a “righteous calling to politics” to one representing security guards contributed to a record number of political players who are contesting the upcoming 2019 general election.

Forty-eight parties will appear on the national ballot in 2019, 19 more than those registered in 2014.

This is despite a trend in the 2014 election in which smaller parties massively declined in support with many new parties launched at the time, failing to make it into Parliament.

While there is a massive growth in political parties, only a handful are recogniSable.

The African Covenant Party is a newcomer to the political terrain, seemingly based on an evangelical Christian outlook.

It is led by pastor Dr Convy Baloyi who describes himself as a “born-again child of God, a believer and follower of Jesus Christ, an ordained priest”. Baloyi believes the party has a “righteous mandate for politics”.

Another newcomer is the African Security Congress targeting security guards. It’s Facebook page says it will fight for the rights of the security sector in Parliament to ensure that its members are treated the same as members of the SA Police Service. This party won the coveted first slot on the ballot paper.

The African Rennaisance Unity Party, another newcomer, claims to represent “traditional leaders”.

The more well known newcomers include former Cape Town mayor Patricia De Lille’s “Good”, Andile Mxgitama’s Black First Land First, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa’s Socialist Revolutionary Workers Party and Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s African Content Movement.

The embattled National Freedom Party, a 2014 breakaway from the Inkatha Freedom Party, is back despite the leadership crisis in the party in recent years.

This was announced by the Electoral Commission of South Africa on Wednesday during an event to mark the signing of the electoral code of conduct by political parties.

The largest number of political parties are contesting for the Gauteng province, with voters able to choose between 36 parties.

We make it make sense

If this story helped you navigate your world, subscribe to the M&G today for just R30 for the first three months

Subscribers get access to all our best journalism, subscriber-only newsletters, events and a weekly cryptic crossword.”

Natasha Marrian
Natasha Marrian
Marrian has built a reputation as an astute political journalist, investigative reporter and commentator. Until recently she led the political team at Business Day where she also produced a widely read column that provided insight into the political spectacle of the week.

Related stories


Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Latest stories

Ubank placed under curatorship effective immediately

Reserve Bank says depositors will still have access to money and the bank will be operational during the process

Academic bullying in the sciences, an international perspective

It is important to support victims of bullying in academic life and help them become less dependent on potential bullies

South Africa’s 1-Minute Film Festival is reshaping the art of...

With the invention of the cell phone, anyone can make a movie. With the creation of the 1-Minute Film Festival, anyone's movie can be seen.

Shireen Abu Akleh’s murder hurts oppressed people

The journalist is among more than 50 reporters who have died at the hands of the Israeli regime and is remembered for bravely giving a voice to Palestinians

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…