South Africa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) has won the general election securing 57.51 per cent votes, according to the final results announced by the country's Electoral Commission on Saturday.
The party retained its majority in the parliament, albeit with diminished support. This is the worst-ever performance by the Nelson Mandela party since the end of apartheid in 1994. It had won a record 69 per cent votes in 2004, and 62 per cent in the previous elections, reported Al Jazeera.
The fall in vote share comes as the ruling party has its task cut out to take steps in strengthening South Africa's stagnated economy, besides improving its image, which took a hit after corruption allegations involving former President Jacob Zuma and others surfaced.
President Cyril Ramaphosa, who replaced Zuma last year, now faces the challenge of regaining public confidence in a party beset with internal divisions.
"We need to correct our mistakes," Duarte said, adding that the results show that voters want an "ANC that is united and in its unity remains true to the values and principles on which it was founded."
The decline in ANC's vote share was predicted owing to several reasons. In the 2016 local elections, the party had faced a steep decline in support, and it lost some key cities to opposition parties. The ruling party also faces widespread apathy among voters born after apartheid, known as the born-free generation.
The main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), experienced a two per cent dip in its vote share from 2014, and secured 20.76 per cent votes.
The turnout for this year's general elections too witnessed a drop, with around 65 per cent of people exercising their franchise, reflecting a general voter apathy towards political parties and their promises.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)