Your top Googled election questions answered

On Friday afternoon, Google South Africa released the top election-related questions South Africans have been typing into the search engine over the past 24-hours.

This being explain.co.za, we’re here to answer those questions. Below are a selection with the best answers we have right now.

Who won the election in South Africa?

The ANC, nationally.

With over 90% of voting districts counted at the time of writing, the party held 57.71% of the national vote.

In terms of the provincial election, which is separate, the ANC won every province except the Western Cape, which went to the DA. [At the time of writing, Gauteng is too close to call but the ANC will likely win this province too, albeit with just over 50%.]

How many votes for a seat in parliament?

0.25% of the vote.

The exact number will depend on the number of votes cast. With 400 seats in parliament, a party needs to capture at least 0.25% of the vote to secure a seat. For example, at the time of writing, 15 833 329 valid votes were counted which would mean a party would need about 39583 votes to secure a seat. This number will change depending on the final vote for this election.

How many parties in 2019 election?


That’s the total number of parties contesting the national election, which is the most ever and 19 more than the last election.

In terms of parties contesting ALL the elections on Wednesday, across the provinces and nationally, that would be 78.

Who is leading in the elections?

The ANC.

…but with a significantly reduced majority. They dropped from just over 62% in the last election to under 60% this time around. However, they averted an even more embarrassing drop as originally predicted thanks in large part to Cyril Ramaphosa winning the party’s top position and restoring faith in the ANC.

When will election results be announced 2019?

Probably Saturday

Results are usually officially announced on the Saturday after election day, which would be 11 May 2019. BUT nearly thirty sore losers smaller parties, who don’t look likely to make it into parliament, have taken the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) to court over minor election glitches they insist affected their support. This despite everyone else giving the election the green light. Till this is resolved, it may delay the official announcement. But all the results would be available by Saturday morning on the IEC site, just not formally announced.

How many seats does EFF have in parliament?


…before this election. After this election, around 42.

How are the elections going?

Mostly great.

There was (and still is) a lot of hysteria over minor glitches like isolated cases of fading ink and stations running out of ballot papers, but these are extremely unlikely to sway the results at all. All independent observers have given the election a preliminary green light. South Africa has world-class, free and fair elections. A lot of the noise around irregularities are just that. Noise. There’s a column about exactly that here if you’re interested.]

Other than that, the elections went off mostly smoothly, although voter turnout was lower than hoped especially among the youth – as usual. Bad weather in certain areas also kept people away.

Who won the Western Cape elections 2019?

The DA.

However, with a reduced majority. They won just over 55% of the vote, down from over 59% in 2014. Patricia de Lille’s GOOD party got 3% and the EFF also improved to 4%, which would have eaten into their support. ANC support dropped even further in the province but is still the official opposition.

When was the last election in South Africa?

In 2014.

That is, the last national and provincial election, which are held every five years. The last local government election was in 2016. And of course, there are by-elections that happen all the time in local wards, when a councillor vacates their position.

*An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that 39583 votes were needed to gain a seat in parliament in this election.