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Supporters of political party Rise Mzansi attend a protest march calling for the delivery of basic services in the Western Cape ahead of the general election in Cape Town, South Africa May 22, 2024.

REUTERS/Nic Bothma

Viewpoint: As South Africa's democracy turns 30, Mandela's ANC faces toughest election yet

South African voters will decide on May 29 whether to give another five-year mandate to the African National Congress, the political party that helped bring about the country’s transition to multi-racial democracy in 1994 and has ruled ever since.

Amid intense scrutiny of the ANC’s 30-year record – especially its failure to address economic problems and an electricity supply crisis – the polls show the party at risk of losing its parliamentary majority. Contributing to its woes is the reemergence of Jacob Zuma, a controversial former president and party leader, who is supporting a new political formation threatening to steal votes from the ANC.

We sat down with Eurasia Group’s Ziyanda Stuurman to learn more about the upcoming vote.

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