In an incredible turn of events, the Afrikaner enclave of Orania has seen a number of voters opt for the least likely option on the ballot paper: The EFF ended up coming third in the whites-only town’s voting district.
According to data shared by the News24 Election Map, the party secured 3.73% of the vote after polls opened on Wednesday. With all votes from the district accounted for, this unlikely result has been set in stone.
EFF in Orania
Situated in the rural heartland of the Northern Cape, Orania was built in the 1990s with the implicit aim of keeping the location as an exclusive zone based on race. It has been the subject of much fascination, both domestically and internationally, as the town somewhat flies in the face of our “rainbow nation” ideals.
Yet on the surface, it would seem like a red revolution is brewing here.
2019 Election results for Orania
- Vryheid Front Plus / Freedom Front Plus: 79.4%, 447 votes.
- Democratic Alliance: 11.01%, 62 votes.
- Economic Freedom Fighters: 3.73%, 21 votes
- Front Nasionaale: 2.13%, 12 votes.
- Congress of the People: 1.41%, eight votes.
Okay, so 21 votes aren’t exactly going to paint the town red: But it’s a significant number, given the historical weight and cultural connotations of Orania. The numbers can, however, be explained.
There are a number of farm workers who ply their trade in the enclave, and the EFF traditionally appeals to this crowd. Secondly, the red berets actually made a point about sending voters to Orania this year, too:
— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) May 8, 2019
EFF’s most unlikely result
The 2019 Elections allowed voters to go and cast their vote at any station they wanted, rather than just sticking to their registered one. This may have caused chaos in some of our major towns and cities, but it allowed the EFF to do a bit of trolling in the Northern Cape.
However, the data also shows that there was an EFF presence in 2014 too. Orania recorded four votes for Julius Malema’s party five years ago. During an election campaign where their provincial support has expanded, the organisation can now boast they’ve increased their backing five-fold in this community.