DA to govern in Beaufort West after winning highly contested by-elections

DA provincial leader Tertuis Simmers celebrated wins in three wards in Beaufort West and Murraysburg.

DA provincial leader Tertuis Simmers celebrated wins in three wards in Beaufort West and Murraysburg.

Published Jun 21, 2024


The DA’s clean sweep victory in the Beaufort West by-elections was a reflection of residents’ disappointment in the parties that failed to deliver on their promises, Stellenbosch University’s School of Public Leadership director Professor Zwelinzima Ndevu said.

There were six municipal by-elections held in the Western Cape on Wednesday with 68 741 people registered to vote in Beaufort West and the Cape Town Metro.

The resignation of two Patriotic Alliance (PA) councillors and one from the ANC led to the vacancies and bruising defeat as the DA snatched highly contested wards 1, 3 and 6 in the Central Karoo.

This shifts the PA, ANC, and KDF council coalition’s power to the DA.

According to the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) results dashboard, the DA showed 40.23% support in Beaufort West followed by the ANC with 23.88% and PA, 13.92%.

The DA further managed to retain all three seats in the wards contested in the metro, receiving 94.84% support followed by the ANC with 3.55% and the EFF 1.53%.

IEC provincial electoral officer Michael Hendrickse said: “I am heartened by the fact that although we have just come out of the national and provincial elections, voters still took time to vote in the by-elections. It augurs well for the local government elections in 2026.”

PA spokesperson Steve Motale congratulated the DA and said that they wished them well.

“Our only appeal to them is that they should continue the good work we started,” he added.

DA provincial leader Tertuis Simmers celebrated wins in three wards in Beaufort West and Murraysburg.

“Not only did the DA win the three wards, but support for the party increased substantially. This marks the first time that the Beaufort West Municipality will be governed outright by the DA.

“This victory ushers in a turning point for the municipality which has for years been fraught with corruption, mismanagement and poor service delivery. The DA has a proven track-record of good, clean governance and we are committed to fix what has been broken and rescue Beaufort West. The election of a new DA mayor will take place in due course,” said Simmers.

He said they proved that under the DA, the City was the best-run metro in the country and the results also reflected the trust voters have in the party.

Ndevu said: “This is the beginning of the end of the honeymoon period for the PA, when it won the votes in Beaufort West it was the party that promised residents heaven with no base for voters to judge them other than their promises.

Many have given the PA an opportunity to govern and it has disappointed them with its track record thus far.

“This is now reflected in the by-elections outcomes.

“It is not surprising for the DA to do well in the Metro, it would seem that most parties have not recovered from the 29 May elections hangover. The DA has been consistent when it comes to the Metro and its plans.”

In KwaZulu-Natal, seven municipalities with 12 wards had vacancies. Just a month after winning votes in the general elections in the province, uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) lost all but one of the contested wards in the by-elections.

The ANC retained three seats, IFP won five seats and retained two, and the DA won four seats and retained three.

Cape Times