As parties ramp up their activity in the final weeks of the election campaign, most political analysts expect the ANC to close the gap between the party’s current opinion poll showing and the 50%-plus it requires to govern alone.

A last-minute rally has been a feature of previous elections. Ministers set aside their official duties and devote the last few weeks of the campaign to bold promises about the future and the unveiling of infrastructure projects. Union members desert classrooms and municipal offices to provide organisational support, and traditional leaders and churches are seduced by last-minute blandishments...

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