Xolisa Phillip News editor

It is June 17 2011, almost a month after the local government elections. On this Friday afternoon, DA leader Helen Zille is criss-crossing Nelson Mandela Bay’s northern areas as part of her party’s "Thank You" tour, visiting voters. Dressed in a party shirt and jeans, Zille is riding with DA supporters in a blue double-decker bus and they are dancing to victory tunes at high volume. She exudes energy and enthusiasm as she waves to excited onlookers. They wave back at her. The bus driver hoots at crowds lining the streets in the northern suburbs — from Gelvandale and Helenvale to Bethelsdorp and surrounds — creating a jubilant atmosphere. Zille and her party, and its supporters, have much to celebrate. In these 2011 local government elections, the DA has managed to cut the ANC’s share of the vote to just more than 50% in Nelson Mandela Bay and the blue brigade has done this by making significant inroads in previous ANC strongholds in the metro. In preceding elections, the governing p...

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