Elections biggest winner benefits from DA losses

(Oupa Nkosi/M&G)

(Oupa Nkosi/M&G)

The mainly white and Afrikaans-speaking Freedom Front Plus (FF+) appears to be the biggest winner of the 2019 national elections.

With just over half the votes counted, the FF+ has already doubled its 2014 votes.

In the last election, the party garnered 165 715 votes. So far, it’s already received 214 726 votes.

“We came up with the slogan of ‘Fight Back’ because that is how people felt. Now is the time in the election,” FF+ leader Pieter Groenewald said.

Groenewald denies his party campaigned on a ticket of Afrikaner populism, saying his party was only responding to how voters feel.

“We said use your vote in an election. Against ANC corruption. Against expropriation without compensation. I know there’s a perception that it is divisive, we have too much violence. If you say fight back on an election poster, we are saying use your vote,” Groenewald said.

The electoral victims that contributed to the FF Plus’ success appear to be Democratic Alliance (DA).

“There’s no doubt we made inroads in the white electorate of the DA,” Groenewald said.

“We openly came forward for the protection of minority rights, and we said we must abolish black economic empowerment and Affirmative Action. We got a lot of calls from our supporters specifically because of this stance.”

On how many seats the party would be allocated once the official vote result has been confirmed, Groenewald is confident of at least a dozen MPs will be sworn in when Parliament reconvenes. This is more than double their four seats allocated in 2014.

“We hope we can get between eight and 12 members of parliament. During the elections, I asked people to give me a mandate so I can have more time to deliver a speech in the national assembly. Small parties usually only get three minutes. I hope to get about 15 minutes,” Groenewald said.

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