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By Eric Naki

Political Editor

Zuma to be a big threat to ANC in KwaZulu-Natal – analyst

As the ANC faces challenges in KZN, analysts debate potential coalition's impact, questioning ANC's stronghold.

Will the ANC lose KwaZulu-Natal to a new coalition of the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), Democratic Alliance (DA) and uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) party or will it stay put in the seat of power in the fiercely contested province?

While experts differ on whether MK will beat the ANC in KZN in next month’s general election, they agree that MK is a real threat to the ANC.

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Political analyst Prof Lesiba Teffo said the ANC would be ousted by a combined MK, IFP and DA after the election.

He said a deal was sealed between the DA and IFP as part of the Multi-Party Charter for South Africa to cooperate after elections while MK could join them to remove the ANC from power.

Teffo believes there is a threehorse race between the ANC, MK and IFP in KZN. “The IFP and DA already have a sealed pact, but I don’t see why MK can’t work with the IFP. On that basis alone, it throws the ANC out of the question, including the EFF.”

KZN could be out of reach for the ANC because MK was gaining momentum in terms of support there while it was growing steadily elsewhere.

Teffo said MK alone would not be able to take over, but that a coalition would see the ANC out of power.

“I’m no longer sure there’s anyone who disputes the fact that MK is going to be a major player in the elections at any level.

“There are a few provinces where it might not make a dent or a reasonable mark, but in Mpumalanga, KZN, Eastern Cape and Gauteng, especially Johannesburg, it will certainly have a major impact. In KZN and Gauteng, the impact will be even greater.”

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Teffo cited the Zulu-factor in KZN and Gauteng, especially around Johannesburg.

Also, KZN had a comparatively higher political consciousness and contestation than other provinces.

“When I say Jacob Zuma is not a Zulu, I mean it politically, not on ethnic lines. To some extent ironically, his support is beginning to cut across the colour line.

“There are white people who are now pro-MK and are expressing vocal support for it. They know the damage he caused to the country, but they believe he can be born again. They are prepared to give him another chance.”

But analyst Prof Sethulego Matebesi said the ANC would still govern the province.

He said MK was definitely a threat “although the ANC cannot acknowledge that publicly. It’s not about the outcome but the extent to which they will cause confusion among the electorate.”