This post and the next two will look at EFF support in Gauteng in a lot more detail, down to the municipal level. We’re going to make some educated guesses about what the EFF could win, and where.
A couple of things before we dive in: Firstly, I have used Wazimap to check some of the numbers and places in the next few posts. Wazimap is a great resource for doing this kind of analysis, and it was developed by Adi Eyal and Greg Kempe.
Secondly, there aren’t that many wards in Gauteng where the EFF looks like it will win, assuming that the 2016 election results reflect the 2014 results. That’s a simplistic (and potentially inaccurate) assumption but it’s the best point of reference, for now.
For the EFF to look like a serious contender in any particular ward, it needs to have captured at least 35 per cent of the vote in a majority of VDs in the ward. Most wards are made up of five to ten VDs, so the results of a single VD might not be reflective of the ward. We will concentrate on clusters of VDs where support for the EFF is at least 20 per cent.
The map below is of the Johannesburg metro and some areas of interest in the West Rand district to the west of the metro:
There’s a pocket of support in Merafong City, the westernmost municipality in Gauteng. It’s to the south-east of Carletonville and covers the areas of West Driefontein, East Driefontein and East Village. Wards 13 and 15 in Merafong City are where the party did best in the municipality – but it still only won 24 per cent and 19 per cent of the vote in the respective wards.
In the Johannesburg metro, in the south there are two wards where the EFF has a sizeable minority: Ward 53 (the south end, around the Taunus substation) and Ward 22 (Pimville, Soweto). The party has about 15 per cent in each ward. The EFF also won 12 per cent of the vote in Ward 25 (Klipspruit, Soweto).
On the north-west side of the metro, in Cosmo City, there is support in wards 100 and 114 (18 per cent and 13 per cent respectively). At the north end of the metro, in Diepsloot, there is support in Wards 95 and 113 (23 per cent and 22 per cent respectively).
The north-east side of the metro, particularly the bit bordering Ekurhuleni, is the area with the most promise. In Alexandra there are a few wards where the EFF has around 20 per cent of the vote, namely Wards 76, 107, and 108 (with 20 per cent, 21 per cent, and 19 per cent of the vote respectively).
It’s the wards right on the edge of Ekurhuleni where the EFF has the highest chance of success, particularly around the townships of Ivory Park and Rabie Ridge. There are a number of wards where the party won between 20 per cent and 25 per cent of the vote in 2014 (Wards 77, 78, 79, 92, 100, and 110).
There are also two wards where the EFF might think it has a chance of winning next year. Ward 111 saw the EFF win 27 per cent of the vote in 2014, while the party won 31 per cent of Ward 80 in the same elections.
Both of these wards (and much of the surrounding area, both in Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni) have a large proportion of Sepedi-speaking South Africans who are originally from Limpopo. This speaks to the language / ethnic basis for the party’s support in Gauteng.
In summary, unless there’s a big change in the voting patterns in 2016 (and there should be at least a small change) the EFF can’t hope to win many wards in Johannesburg – maybe two at most (Wards 111 and 80).