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ANC falls far short of majority, gets 159 of 400 seats

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers a speech during a press conference announcing the election result at the National Results Operations Center in Midrand, South Africa, on June 2, 2024. South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) has secured 159 out of 400 seats in the National Assembly in the country’s 2024 general elections, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) officially announced on Sunday evening. (Xinhua/Zhang Yudong)

JOHANNESBURG | Xinhua | South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) has secured 159 out of 400 seats in the National Assembly in the country’s 2024 general elections, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) officially announced on Sunday evening.

The main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), came second with 87 seats in the National Assembly, followed by the uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) Party with 58 seats and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) with 39 seats, according to the official election results released by the IEC at the Results Operation Center (ROC) in Midrand, Johannesburg.

More than 27 million South Africans took part in the 2024 national and provincial elections on May 29 to elect a new National Assembly and provincial legislatures.

In the end, no party won an outright majority in the National Assembly. The ANC got less than 200 seats it needed to maintain its 30-year-old unchallenged dominance in the lower house of parliament.

While announcing the final results, IEC Chairperson Mosotho Moepya declared the 2024 general elections as “free and fair.”

Calling them “the most difficult and highly contested elections” since the end of apartheid in 1994, Moepya said this year’s elections were not without their challenges, as attempts to undermine the credibility of the IEC had been made.

In his speech after the announcement of election results, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said it “represents a victory for our democracy, for our constitutional order and for all the people of South Africa.”

“We have held another successful election that has been free, fair and peaceful,” said Ramaphosa. “Our people have spoken. As the leaders of political parties, as all those who occupy positions of responsibility in society, we have heard the voices of our people and we must respect their wishes.”

“And now, we are all called upon to recognize that the results of the election reflect the will of the people,” he added.

Following Sunday’s official announcement of the election results, the newly elected National Assembly will have 14 days to hold its first sitting, where members will elect the president of South Africa for the next five years by a simple majority. ■

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