The ANC is facing the prospect of losing yet another major metro amid a dispute over certain ward demarcations and municipal boundaries.
According to a report in the Sunday Times, the African Independent Congress (AIC) may withdraw from a coalition that ensures the ruling party controls Ekurhuleni in Gauteng and Rustenburg in North West.
The AIC has reportedly accused top ANC leaders of misleading them, having initially agreed to consider their request to incorporate Matatiele into KwaZulu-Natal.
The Municipal Demarcation Board (MDB) took the decision to re-determine certain ward demarcations and municipal boundaries in the country, ahead of the 2016 local elections, in August.
The delimitation process resulted in the number of municipalities being slashed from 278 to 257.
AIC president Mandla Galo said on Friday that his congress had given power to the ANC after “they begged us to trust them”. However, the Sunday Times reported that the ANC had repeatedly shelved meetings to discuss their demands.
“What really broke our spirits is when they told us they were busy with January 8 [ANC anniversary preparations], which meant that they were not serious,” the AIC said.
For the ANC to meet the AIC’s demand, it would require the government to redraw the boundaries between KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape.
The ANC suffered its worst election last year since taking power in 1994. The party lost control of the Tshwane, City of Johannesburg, and Nelson Mandela Bay metros.
Read the full article in the 22 January edition of the Sunday Times.