South Africa’s ruling party wins elections



Update 5/7/09: Jacob Zuma was elected South Africa’s president on Wednesday by parliament and will be inaugurated on Saturday. He’s expected to name his new government on Sunday.

Speak your peace.

(4/27/09) Although the African National Congress, the ruling political party in South Africa since Nelson Mandela’s presidential election in 1994, didn’t win the symbolically significant two-thirds vote in Saturday’s elections, the party still managed to retain the majority of seats in parliament with 264 of 400 (65.9%). Jacob Zuma, the party’s presidential candidate who recently overcame corruption and rape charges, is expected to be inaugurated next month, once parliament votes. However, the ANC has new, stronger opposition now — the Democratic Alliance party now controls the Western Cape region, home to beautiful tourist destination Cape Town and will get 67 seats in parliament; and the Congress of the People (COPE), led by a white woman, will get 30 seats. The remaining 39 seats were split across other minor parties.

The next major elections in five years should be very interesting. The country’s newest voters will be the first generation with no personal experience with or memory of apartheid and the ANC’s role in ending it.

Speak your peace.

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