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eThekwini results confirmed: ANC win! Kaunda snatches dramatic victory

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After a topsy-turvy few days, fraught with tension and high emotions, we finally have a winner in eThekwini: Mxolisi Kaunda has been elected as the metro’s mayor, capping a breathless victory for the ANC.

Kaunda defeated the DA’s Nicole Graham by 113 votes to 104 votes. There were two spoiled votes.

BREAKING: Mxolisi Kaunda has been elected the Mayor of the Ethekwini municipality. #EthekwiniCouncil pic.twitter.com/vOWcYreKjV

— Nhlanhla Mabaso (@_NMabaso) November 24, 2021

Who is the new mayor of eThekwini?

Well, where do we even begin to summarise how we got to this point? The IFP’s decision to dump the ANC after agreeing to a coalition pact with them last week set the tone for the ruling party’s disastrous week. Despite taking NMB on Monday morning, they lost control of both Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni to the DA before the close of business.

READ MORE: eThekwini latest: ‘Ghost votes’, missing councillors spark chaos

ANC vs DA: eThekwini declares winners in mayor vote

Tshwane followed into ‘blue rule’ on Tuesday, as the ANC continued to lose municipalities in Richards Bay, Newcastle, and several other former strongholds. That’s why this battle for eThekwini became such a tense affair.

For both the DA and ANC, a huge stake of their political future was riding on this result. A win for the DA’s mayoral candidate was unthinkable just a few days ago, but such has been the fluid nature of this contest, only yesterday did Mxolisi Kaunda’s re-election look like a near-impossibility, too.

Election marred by bitter feuds

In reality, the contest was much closer than anyone gave it credit for. Again, we have another major metro that is now propped up by an uneasy marriage between political opposites, as minority governments and coalition partnerships look to uplift the fortunes of our municipalities. They’re going to have to find some common ground, and fast.

eThekwini’s voting process was slammed throughout the day, too. Complaints about missing councillors held-up the secret ballot, and the DA even accused the ANC of trying to bribe councillors in exchange for their support. The bad blood running between these opponents remains evident for all to see.

READ ALSO: eThekwini drama: ANC deny claims they are offering ‘cash for votes’

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