The ANC believes its first by-election in Chatsworth is a sign that its efforts to woo Indian voters are bearing fruit. ANC candidate Previn Vedan, a 26-year-old community activist and human rights lawyer, beat his main opponent, the DA’s Fathima Ismail, by more than 469 votes in the predominantly Indian ward 71 of the Ethekwini municipality. Over the past 10 years the DA had comfortably won this ward, where the by-election was prompted by a DA shake-up. The then ward councillor, Sharon Hoosen, was moved to the provincial legislature.

Vedan swept to victory with 2,794 votes, while Ismail amassed 2,325. The ward was hotly contested, with the IFP, the EFF, the Al Jamaah Party, the African Christian Democratic Party and the Democratic Liberal Congress also taking part. Ward 71 comprises Shallcross, Crossmoor and Moorton but also encompasses the informal settlement of Bottlebrush and Shallcross, where thousands of black migrant workers have moved in recent years. Vedan has a long ...

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