ANC regains power in South Africa’s biggest city, thanks to the DA

Geoff Makhubo is the new mayor of Johannesburg

South Africa’s African National Congress has taken back control of the main city, Johannesburg, after its candidate Geoff Makhubo was elected mayor by a comfortable margin.

Geoff Makhubo obtained the votes of 137 councillors, compared with the 101 for the Democratic Alliance (DA) candidate, Funzela Ngobeni.

The radical Economic Freedom Fighters’ (EFF) Musa Novela came a distant third, with 30 votes.

The mayoral post became vacant after the DA’s Herman Mashaba abruptly resigned in October, saying his party was not interested in tackling racial inequality in South Africa.

He became mayor in 2016 – the first time the opposition took power in South Africa’s economic hub since minority rule ended in 1994.

Speaking after his victory, Mr Makhubo said he would get traffic lights working and “as you walk into Johannesburg there must be cleanliness”.

“That’s the focus on my first 100 days,” he added.

Reacting the news, the DA said the new mayor faced corruption allegations and his election to the top post was a sad day for the city.

The EFF backed Mr Mashaba in the 2016 election, helping him to win. However, it refused to back the DA’s candidate this time around.

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