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ANC holds commanding lead in South Africa poll

Early results in South Africa's general election show that the ruling African National Congress has taken a commanding lead.

ANC supporters in Pretoria, South Africa

Turnout was so high that polls stayed open longer than planned

With just under one third of voting districts counted in national and provincial polls, the ANC stood at around 63 percent. Should the ANC win its fourth consecutive election since the end of apartheid, the party is expected to name Jacob Zuma president.

The Democratic Alliance party, of Cape Town Mayor Helen Zille, had a distant second place.

The four-month-old Congress of the People, a party of breakaway ANC members loyal to ousted former president Thabo Mbeki, was shown trailing in third place with 8 percent of the vote.

Turnout was high and polling continued at some stations after closing hours due to the large number of voters. Over 23 million voters were registered to participate in Wednesday's polls, the fourth general election since the formal end of apartheid in the 1994.