Quote of the week

It is necessary that the integrity of the electoral process be maintained. Indeed, the acceptance of the election as being free and fair depends upon that integrity. Elections must not only be free and fair but they must be perceived as being free and fair. Even-handedness in dealing with all political parties and candidates is crucial to that integrity and its perception by voters. The Commission must not be placed in a situation where it has to make ad hoc decisions about political parties and candidates who have not complied with the Act. The requirement that documents must be submitted to the local offices of the Commission does not undermine the right to vote and to stand for election. It simply gives effect to that right and underscores the decentralised and local nature of municipal elections.

Ngcobo CJ
Electoral Commission of the Republic of South Africa v Inkatha Freedom Party
19 May 2011

Election results update

Watching the SABC and ETV coverage of the election results is a bit like trying to watch a rugby game blindfolded with very loud and drunk spectatiors sitting all around you. There is a lot of noise but one is not able to gather much hard information from this exercise. And if one analyst or presenter says “It’s early days yet,” I am going to scream.

The leaderboard at the IEC results centre also provides utterly meaningless statistics because one does not know which wards or municipalities have reported their results, whether more results have come in from traditionally DA than ANC strongholds and which province has reported the largest percentage of those results so far. Idiotic. 

In any case, this is a local government election, so what happens in each Metro and in each town is far more important than the overall vote tallies for the parties. If one wants to get real information one must go to the Internet. Unfortunately the Electoral Commission site is outdated and is far too complicated to use and unless one is a serious number crunching geek it does not seem of much use.

News24 has probably the best and easiest to use page. It contains a map with both 20o6 and 2011 results, which gives one a far better picture of what is going on than the TV reports. Otherwise, for those on Twitter, it is very useful to search for #LGEResults or #LGER2011 and follow those feeds. From what I gather from my sources the DA did very well in Cape Town and will win in a landslide, while the ANC probably did better than expected in Johannesburg. (And, no, I am not going to caution that it is early days yet.)

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