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South Africans Head to Polls

South African election ballot boxes
Campaigning is winding down in South Africa where voters head to the polls in the country’s general election Wednesday to choose 400 National Assembly members and 90 National Council of Provinces members.

Analysts believe the ruling African National Congress (ANC) will retain an overwhelming majority with President Jacob Zuma’s mandate being renewed.

They also expect the Democratic Alliance, South Africa’s main opposition, to increase its share of the vote.

The Independent Electoral Commission that is overseeing the elections says 33 political parties registered to contest in the polls, the fifth since the end of apartheid in 1994.

The newly formed Economic Freedom Fighters party led by expelled ANC youth leader Julius Malema is also giving the ANC a run for its money.

Pastor Steven Chiadzwa of the Zimbabwe Pastors Forum and leader of the Oasis of Life Church in Johannesburg says there has been relative peace in the build-up to the elections compared to some African elections, Zimbabwe included.

Pastor Chiadzwa says Zimbabweans can learn a lot from this election.

“I think what we lack in Zimbabwe is democracy, for example, here in South Africa they have what is called Chapter 9 institutions that have helped in maintaining the democracy, to keep it intact,” he says.
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