Mandela's ANC goes ahead but there are suspects of electoral fraud

Counting of votes by the Electoral Commission officials

Counting of votes by the Electoral Commission officials

The ANC leads the counting of votes with 55.04%. The Electoral Commission says there is evidence of fraud. The largest opposition party (DA) will ask for an audit to the results.

With 3.208.518 votes counted, 42,659 spoilt votes and 3.165.859 validated until today's 9 a.m. (8 a.m. in Lisbon) - about 30% of the constituencies - the African National Congress (ANC), the ruling party, leads the run for the National Assembly with 55.04%, followed by the DA (26%) and the EFF (Economic Freedom Fighters), of the far-left, with 8.23%.

Cyril Ramaphosa, the president of the country, is expected to be re-elected despite the blames against the ANC for the widespread wave of corruption and high unemployment rates in the country.

The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has raised suspicions of electoral fraud related to "multiple vote" cases in which some voters say they have voted more than once.

The biggest opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), believes that the fraud will have a much larger dimension and questioned the credibility of the IEC, adding that they will request a "full audit" of the election results. "The allegations are serious. In addition to the fact that we have evidence that thousands of voters voted more than once, there was a lack of ballot papers, polling stations that did not open, polling stations that closed early, and bad organization of the process in general by the IEC," said James Selfie of the DA Federal Council, in statements to the television channel ENCA.

At the provincial level, the DA leads in Johannesburg and Pretoria with 38.96%, followed by ANC (30.93%) and VF Plus (15.22%).

The DA still leads the West Cape with 58.82%, followed by the ANC (23.86%) and the EFF (3.50%).

The electoral count began at midnight (11 p.m. in Lisbon) in the small municipality of Mzimvubu, Eastern Cape province, the birthplace of the African National Congress, where only 24 voters voted. The Eastern Cape is the home province of ANC's historic leader and South Africa's first black president, Nelson Mandela.

About 28 million voters decide for the sixth time since the end of apartheid in 1994, South Africa's political future, after a decade of weak economic growth, increased corruption in the state and racial tensions.