As the DA claimed early victories in a number of Western Cape municipalities on Thursday morning, Premier Helen Zille said it would not be “coalitions at any price” in those which they did not win outright.
According to provisional results, the DA’s biggest victory so far in the province was snatching control of the Beaufort West Municipality in the Central Karoo from the ANC.
The DA has also gained control over the beleaguered Oudtshoorn municipality, which was placed under administration following years of political instability.
Zille said the DA’s victory in Beaufort West did not come as a surprise despite claims by its controversial ANC mayor Truman Prince who said the DA would never make inroads on his turf. “I really had a sense it was coming,” she said at the Western Cape provincial results centre this morning.
“The greatest surprise for me is how we are overturning safe ANC seats and safe ANC councils.” Zille said she was “excited” and “delighted” with the results in the Cape Agulhas municipality and Kouga in the Eastern Cape.
“So much for people saying in every election that we’ve reached our ceiling. It shows that where most people have experienced DA government, they want more of it.”
Provisional results have also given the DA power in the Laingsburg and Berg River municipalities. But in the areas where the DA would come up short, Zille said the party would “see how the cards fall” first before entering into coalitions with other parties.
“We can’t make a general rule about a coalitions for every single council. What we have to do is to decide when we see the result, how we are going to plan for each council and which coalitions we will enter and which coalitions we won’t,” she said.