Politics of the Western Cape

The politics of the Western Cape differs from that of most other provinces in South Africa, because, unlike the other provinces, the African National Congress (ANC) does not dominate the political landscape. The Western Cape's political landscape is also notable for the presence of a relatively strong local devolution and independence movement.[1][2][3]

During the 2022 invasion of Ukraine by Russia the City of Cape Town lit up the City Hall in the colours of the Ukrainian flag. The Western Cape government's open support for Ukraine was in contrast to the neutral position taken by the South African government and is representative of the province's different political norms.

Election history

In the election of 2004, no party achieved an absolute majority in the province, with the ANC having a plurality of 45% of the votes. However, the ANC was in an alliance with the New National Party (NNP), which had 11% of the votes, which allowed the ANC-NNP coalition to form a provincial government. During the 2005 floor crossing period all of the NNP members of the Provincial Parliament moved to the ANC, giving the ANC an absolute majority in the province. The ANC chose Ebrahim Rasool as Premier; in 2008 he was replaced by Lynne Brown. The provincial leader of the ANC was Mcebisi Skwatsha.

The official opposition in the Western Cape after the 2004 elections was the Democratic Alliance (DA), which received 27% of the vote in the provincial ballot. The City of Cape Town, the most populous municipality in the province, was governed by a multi-party coalition led by the DA after the 2006 municipal elections. The DA increased its share of the vote during the 2011 municipal elections to 61.09%, giving them a firm majority and allowing them to govern the City of Cape Town without their former coalition partners [4]

In the election of 22 April 2009 the ANC was unseated by the DA, which took 51.46% of the vote.[5] This election marked the first time since the end of apartheid that a party scored an overall majority in the province. The DA leader Helen Zille replaced Lynne Brown as Premier on 6 May 2009.[6]

In the election of 7 May 2014 the DA maintained its hold on the province, increasing its majority to 59.4%.

In the election of 8 May 2019 the DA won a reduced majority of 55.45%.

Election results

Democratic Alliance1,140,64755.45–3.9324–2
African National Congress589,05528.63–4.2512–2
Economic Freedom Fighters83,0754.04 +1.932+1
African Christian Democratic Party54,7622.66 +1.6410
Freedom Front Plus32,1151.56 +1.011+1
Al Jama-ah17,6070.86 +0.241+1
Independent Civic Organisation9,5360.46–0.1000
Cape Party9,3310.45New0New
Congress of the People6,5280.32–0.2700
Alliance for Transformation for All6,1750.30New0New
Land Party5,9260.29New0New
United Democratic Movement5,7280.28–0.2000
African Transformation Movement4,9530.24New0New
Plaaslike Besorgde Inwoners3,8520.19New0New
Pan Africanist Congress3,8450.19 +0.0200
Socialist Revolutionary Workers Party3,0260.15New0New
African Independent Congress2,8980.14–0.1700
Green Party2,6130.13New0New
National Freedom Party2,2400.11 +0.0700
Khoisan Revolution1,8540.09New0New
Dienslewerings Party1,7030.08New0New
Karoo Democratic Force1,5120.07New0New
African Covenant9930.05New0New
African People's Convention9150.04–0.0200
People's Republic of South Africa7100.03New0New
Inkatha Freedom Party5990.03–0.0200
All Things Are Possible5560.03New0New
African Progressive Movement5310.03New0New
Azanian People's Organisation4750.02–0.0200
Free Democrats4700.02New0New
New South Africa Party4440.02New0New
Forum for Service Delivery3100.02New0New
African Content Movement2570.01New0New
Valid votes2,057,21299.20
Invalid/blank votes16,5160.80
Total votes2,073,728100.00
Registered voters/turnout3,128,56766.28
Source: Election Resources


  1. "Self-determination is the issue of the year in the Western Cape". The Mail & Guardian. 2022-02-04. Retrieved 2022-03-13.
  2. "Tito Mboweni wants Cape independence referendum nipped in the bud". The Citizen. 2021-10-01. Retrieved 2022-03-13.
  3. "Parties which supported Western Cape independence from SA reap rewards in local government elections". www.iol.co.za. Retrieved 2022-03-13.
  4. "2011 election: Cape Town results - NEWS & ANALYSIS - Politicsweb". www.politicsweb.co.za. Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  5. 2009 provincial results News24. 25 April 2009
  6. "Applause as Zille secures premiership". IOL. 6 May 2009. Retrieved 6 May 2009.

See also

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