AFRICANGLOBE – South Africa’s Institute for Race Relations (IRR) has released its Criterion Report, a quarterly market research survey on voter preferences.
Nationally the poll does not paint a happy picture for the African National Congress (ANC), who by the survey’s estimation are at risk of losing their majority and dipping below the 50% mark for the first time since South Africa’s transition towards democracy. The poll puts the governing party at 49.5% nationally, a sharp 5.2% dip from IRR’s data released in February, which put them at 54.7%.
The Democratic Alliance, meanwhile, is described as “stable” by the report, but has also lost half a percentage point since February, from 21.8% nationally to 21.3%.
The party appearing to benefit from these drops is the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), which the report puts at 14.9% nationally, a 2.7% increase from February’s estimation of 12.2% – already a sharp rise in support compared to past elections.
Provincially, the poll paints an even bleaker picture for the ANC, which the poll puts at 42.8%. While this is better than the 41.6% the party polled at in February, it would show a sharp drop from the 53.8% the party received in the 2016 municipal elections and would mark the first time the party descends to well below a majority.
The DA is stable in the province, meanwhile, with half a percentage point lost, echoing how the party polled nationally, from 32.4% to 31.9%. If the results following May 8 mirror the IRR poll, Gauteng will be a good province for the DA, more so if there is a low voter turnout – the poll shows the party rising to 39% if only 71.9% turn up, and 40% if only 69.3% turn up.
Support for EFF, on the other hand, has dropped sharply in Gauteng according to the poll, from 18.2% to 13%. Conversely to the DA, the poll sees the party’s support dropping if there’s a low turnout come election day.
The Western Cape sees the DA’s majority threatened, as both the EFF and African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) are on the rise and the ANC shows a drop in support. The DA currently stands on 44.6% on the Western Cape provincial ballot, down 5.5 percentage points from 50.1% in February, according to the poll.
The full survey can be read here.
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