Staff writerSouth Africa has held five national elections since 1994, one every five years. As we await the results of the country’s latest national vote, which took place on 7 May 2014 in South Africa’s 20th year of democracy, we look back at past election results.The relative number of National Assembly seats in Parliament political parties have won in South Africa’s four previous democratic elections.The proportional representation systemThe proportional representation system is also called the party list system. Every vote counts. The total number of votes cast for a party decides the number of seats it gets in Parliament.Parties draw up lists of candidates, and the number of people that get in will be decided by the number of seats the party wins. This is the system used in all South African national elections since 1994, and will be used in this year’s elections.For example:Party A: 100 000 votes – 100 seatsParty B: 20 000 votes – 20 seatsParty C: 50 000 votes – 50 seatsThe first 100 people on Party A’s list will get seats in Parliament, as will the first 20 people on Party B’s list and the first 50 people on Party C’s list.The 1994 electionsThe struggles waged by exiled liberation movements and communities inside South Africa, together with international pressure, led to the unbanning of organisations and a negotiated transition period, including the drawing up of a democratic Constitution.The resulting 1994 elections were historic because they were the first-ever non-racial democratic vote in South Africa.After fighting for so long for democracy, 19.7-million South Africans cast their ballots, with a turnout of 86.9% of registered voters. 1994 NATIONAL ELECTION RESULTSVotes wonNational Assembly seatsAfrican National Congress (ANC)62.7%252National Party (NP)20.4%82Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP)10.5%43Freedom Front (FF)2.2%9Democratic Party (DP)1.8%7Pan Africanist Congress (PAC)1.3%5African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP)0.5%2The 1999 electionsThe 1996 Constitution said that there must be elections every five years, so new national and provincial elections had to be held before the end of July 1999. The were held on 2 June 1999, with 16.2-million South Africans voting for a registered voter turnout of 89.3%.1999 NATIONAL ELECTION RESULTSVotes wonNational Assembly seatsAfrican National Congress (ANC)66.4%266Democratic Party (DP)9.6%38Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP)8.6%34New National Party (NNP)6.9%28United Democratic Movement (UDM)3.4%14African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP)1.4%6Freedom Front (FF)0.8%3United Christian Democratic Party (UCDP)0.8%3Pan Africanist Congress (PAC)0.7%3Federal Alliance (FA)0.5%2Minority Front (MF)0.3%1Afrikaner Eenheidsbeweging (AEB)0.3%1Azanian People’s Organisation (Azapo)0.2%1The 2004 electionsSouth Africa’s third democratic national and provincial elections were held on 14 April 2004.2004 NATIONAL ELECTION RESULTSVotes wonNational Assembly seatsAfrican National Congress (ANC)69.7%279Democratic Alliance (DA)12.4%50Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP)7.0%28United Democratic Movement (UDM)2.3%9Independent Democrats (ID)1.7%7New National Party (NNP)1.7%7African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP)1.6%6Freedom Front Plus (FF+)0.9%4United Christian Democratic Party (UCDP)0.753Pan Africanist Congress (PAC)0.733Minority Front (MF)0.352Azanian People’s Organisation (Azapo)0.252The 2009 electionsThe fourth democratic national and provincial elections were held on 22 April 2009.2009 ELECTION RESULTSVotes wonNational Assembly seatsAfrican National Congress (ANC)65.9%264Democratic Alliance (DA)16.7%67Congress of the People (Cope)7.4%30Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP)4.6%18Independent Democrats (ID)0.9%4United Democratic Movement (UDM)0.9%4Freedom Front Plus (FF+)0.8%4African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP)0.8%3United Christian Democratic Party (UCDP)0.4%2Pan Africanist Congress (PAC)0.3%1Minority Front (MF)0.3%1Azanian People’s Organisation (Azapo)0.2%1African People’s Convention (APC)0.2%1
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The appointment of Union Minister of State Gajendra Singh Shekhawat as the convenor of the BJP’’ election management committee for the Rajasthan Assembly polls has sprung surprise in the political circles here. Mr. Shekhawat had earlier lost out the race for the BJP State president after Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s resistance.Saini to head panelBJP president Amit Shah announced the 16-member panel’s appointment in New Delhi on Thursday amid speculations that the party’s central leadership does not want to give a free hand to Ms. Raje in the selection of candidates, orgnisational matters and monitoring of electoral strategies. BJP State chief Madan Lal Saini will head the committee, which has Ms. Raje as one of its members.Differences between Ms. Raje and Mr. Shah had reportedly delayed the appointment of new BJP State president by three months after Ms. Raje’s confidant Ashok Parnami resigned following the party’s defeat in by-elections to one Assembly and two Lok Sabha constituencies earlier this year. ‘Social engineering’ Though the BJP has attempted to carry out “social engineering” by including the communities such as Rajputs, Jats and Meghwals in the committee, the party faces a tough task of getting the votes of these caste groups in the upcoming Assembly election. The occasional display of divisions within the party also remains a major issue to be tackled by the senior BJP leaders.According to the political observers, the appointment of Mr. Shekhawat, who is Lok Sabha MP from Jodhpur, may help resolve hostility against BJP among certain sections in the Marwar region. However, his uneasy relations with Ms. Raje may affect smooth functioning of the committee.
After Pilkhuwa, one more case of alleged custodial torture has come to light from western Uttar Pradesh. A 27-year-old Dalit man was allegedly tortured by policemen when his father failed to pay the instalments of a loan on a tractor in Pahasu area of Bulandshahr. The incident happened on September 27 but the FIR was registered on Friday after the State SC/ST Commission took note of the incident and directed the police to book the three accused policemen.In the FIR, Pramod said that his father bought a tractor by mortgaging a piece of land but started defaulting on payments. Fearing action, he ran away with the tractor three months ago. “On September 27, I was picked up by policemen from my field and was locked up in the police station where I was flogged brutally. I was sedated and tortured for three days.”Pramod said he met senior police officers but when nobody responded, he approached the SC/ST Commission. According to sources, a local politician could be involved in the case.Bulandshahar SSP said an FIR had been lodged against S-I Rajeev Kumar Gaur and Constables Sheel Kumar and Babloo.