Ramaphosa's ANC to Dominate South African Election, Poll Shows

(Bloomberg) -- Support for South Africa’s ruling African National Congress has rebounded after Cyril Ramaphosa replaced Jacob Zuma as party leader and president to the point that it’s likely to easily retain its outright majority in next year’s elections, an opinion poll shows.

Sixty percent of 3,738 adults interviewed between April 20 and June 7 by research company Ipsos said they would vote for the ANC, while just 13 percent said they would back the Democratic Alliance and 7 percent the Economic Freedom Fighters. No other party polled more than 1 percent support.

The ANC secured 62.2 percent support in the last national elections in 2014, but its support slumped to 54.5 percent in a municipal vote two years ago after Zuma’s immersion in a succession of scandals alienated its supporters. Ramaphosa, a former labor union leader and one of the richest black South Africans, won control of the ANC in December and became president two months later after the party forced Zuma to step down. The next national vote is due to take place around mid-2019.

“At the end of the Zuma years, trust in the ANC was very low, but the party has recovered quite significantly in the last seven months,” Ipsos said. “The trust indices for both the DA and the EFF are in negative terrain, but the EFF made more progress in terms of building trust than the DA.”

The DA, which 22.2 percent of the vote in 2014 and 27 percent in 2016, has been plagued by infighting and made several public relations blunders over recent months that may have cost it support.

Seven percent of respondents refused to say who they would vote for, 5 percent said they wouldn’t cast a ballot and 3 percent said they didn’t know.

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