Though the big story out of Mpumalanga has been the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) displacing the Democratic Alliance (DA) as the official opposition in the province, the ANC’s majority has been cut down significantly.
With 96.84% of the vote counted, the ANC will win an outright majority, with nearly 72% of the vote. The EFF tallied 11.59%, nearly two percent more than the DA with the opposition benches in the provincial legislature now set to turn from blue to red.
The result also shows a more than six percent drop in votes for the ANC in a province that deputy president David Mabuza has perfunctorily delivered for the ANC in the previous decade.
Until recently Mpumalanga also formed part of the premier league, a cohort of provinces that served as a power base for former president Jacob Zuma. After his move to the Union Buildings, Mabuza anointed a relative unknown in Refilwe Mtshweni as his successor.
The losses for the DA mimic the national picture with the EFF and Freedom Front Plus making significant gains.