National 3.8.2016 10:18 pm

EFF already celebrating election wins

Julius Malema on voting day. Picture: Nigel Sibanda

Julius Malema on voting day. Picture: Nigel Sibanda

Despite the tragic car death of one of its councillor candidates, the young party is still feeling confident.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) in Lethabong near Rustenburg opted for early victory celebrations on Wednesday, barely waiting for the closure of polls at 7pm.

A convoy of cars displaying EFF flags slowly drove through the township, with party members punching the air with fists chanting: “Yes, Yes” in celebration of an anticipated coming victory.

The EFF was confident of winning Ward 28 of the Rustenburg local municipality and to  dethrone the ANC in Ward 27.

Ward 28 was held by former ANC Youth League branch chairman Pako Molatlhegi, who stood as an independent candidate in the 2011 local government election. He was the EFF candidate for this vote.

Voters were still standing on queue at Barelwanedi and Noka Ya Lerato Primary Schools voting station at 7pm, the official close of voting.

Meanwhile, North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo has reacted with shock to news about the death of Francis Modisenyana Matlabe, an EFF councillor candidate in Ward 9 in Mamusa Local Municipality.

Matlabe died in a road crash outside Schweizer-Reneke town on the way to Bloemhof.

“The demise of Mr Matlabe has come as a shock to us, and on behalf of citizens of Bokone Bophirima [North West] and the provincial government, I wish to express my sincere condolences to his family, friends and the EFF,” Mahumapelo said.

Earlier on Wednesday, the premier said it was cause to celebrate that voting was going smoothly in Marikana near Rustenburg, where the national elections in 2014 were marred by tensions lingering after the shooting of 34 mine workrs in 2012.

The Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) said voting went smoothly at voting stations throughout the country.

“The Electoral Commission is especially pleased that no significant incidents of unrest or deliberate disruptions to voting have been reported,” the IEC said in a statement.

– African News Agency (ANA).

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