Election results

TSA composite (Images via: Twitter @EFFSouthAfrica / @CyrilRamaphosa / @jsteenhuisen)

ANC vs DA vs EFF: What are the ‘magic numbers’ each party is aiming for?

Voting for the 2021 Municipal Elections will come to an end soon but what about those results? Here’s what the ANC, DA and EFF need to beat.

Election results

TSA composite (Images via: Twitter @EFFSouthAfrica / @CyrilRamaphosa / @jsteenhuisen)

Voting day of the 2021 Municipal Elections are upon us, and so far, millions of people have ink on their thumbs. While there are still a few hours to go until the polling stations close, we think there’s no better time to assess what kind of numbers constitute success for the top three parties; the African National Congress (ANC), Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).

What better way than to look at the 2016 Local Government Elections to get an idea of what each party needs, right?

Municipal elections are held every five years to elect councillors who will be responsible for governing a municipality. The councillors will serve on the town, city, metropolitan or district councils that ensure services that impact the daily lives of citizens in their areas including water, electricity and sanitation. Therefore, the municipal elections, affect the ordinary South African by leaps and bounds.


Let’s unpack the 2016 Local Government Elections, shall we? According to the IEC, the ANC, DA and EFF scored as follows five years ago;

While there was a voter turnout of 57.94% back in 2016, the ANC received 55.68% of valid votes. The DA received 24.57% of valid votes and the EFF received 8.31%. In other words, these parties need to secure more than that to claim any type of success or victory. Anything less would no doubt mean they’ve done something wrong.

At midday on Monday, the IEC reported that only 3.5 million people had cast a vote which translates to a very low voter turnout. While there’s still time for the numbers to increase, it’s looking pretty bleak for now.

Elections Expert Dawie Scholtz took to Twitter saying; “The IEC just announced 3.5 million people had voted by noon. If you add the special votes it implies total national turnout by noon of 14%. That’s very, very low.”

A poll from IPSOS predicts that the ANC – based on the low voter turnout – is in for a real horror shock but only time will tell. As of 16:34 on Monday afternoon, the IEC reported a national voter turnout of just 23.13%.

READ: SA heading for low-voter turnout – and it could put the ANC ‘under 40%’


While the ANC, DA and EFF are probably on the edge of their seats, vote counting in the 2021 Municipal Elections, or any election for that matter, is no speedy task. The IEC explained that there is an eight-step process that entails verification, unfolding, sorting, counting and bundling. The last four steps then require the votes to be reconciled, signed and involve result centres and a final result announcement.

It’s going to take time folks but at the end of it all, we’ll know exactly where our top three parties stand and if the ANC will maintain its power or be forced to make space for a new governing party. Either way, we’ll keep you updated every step of the way.