Political big shots camp at IEC's ROC

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pretoria - As the arm-wrestling match continues for the local government results, political party leaders are keeping their fingers crossed.

Senior party leaders, some even from opposition parties, could be seen sharing small talk and catching up, reminding one that they could be good friends when they are not battling it out for voter support.

They spent the day at the Results Operation Centre (ROC) to witness the recording and capturing of the results as they come in from the provinces.

At the ANC camp, big wigs - mostly cabinet ministers - shared jokes among each other as they monitored the screen with the incoming results, just after 2 pm.

Among them was Minister of Justice & Constitutional Development Jeff Radebe, Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini, Correctional Services Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, Deputy Minister for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation Dina Pule and Premier Nomvula Mokonyane.

Other familiar faces were Gwede Mantashe, Baleka Mbete, Jessie Duarte and ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu who were mostly busy with media interviews at the centre.

The ANC were still topping the leader board with 62.2 percent just after 3 pm. As the results continue to flow in at the centre, the mood is becoming very tense with party representatives showing signs of distress.

But DA leader Helen Zille, also seen in the centre, was in a cheerful mood. Nationally, the DA was standing at number two with 23.6 percent.

Given the two-horse race between the ANC and the DA, the other 121 parties contesting the elections are hardly making an impact.

But the biggest loser so far seems to be the Liberal Democratic Party with only 17 votes.

Other leaders present at the ROC where Freedom Front Plus (FF Plus) leader Pieter Mulder and ACDP leader Rev Kenneth Meshoe.

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