The African Independent Congress (AIC) has been invited to a meeting by the African National Congress (ANC) to thrash out its demand to have Matatiele reincorporated back into KwaZulu-Natal as part of its coalition condition with the governing party in Gauteng’s Ekurhuleni metro.
AIC spokesman Aubrey Mhlongo said his party leadership was steadfast on its demand.
“The ANC drafted their offer and we told them the demarcation issue was our starting point. Because the regional Ekurhuleni has no power over the national issue, we told them to consult with the ANC national leadership about our demand. We have since received an invitation to a meeting with the ANC at St Georges Hotel on Sunday,” Mhlongo said.
The ANC top leadership is holding a national executive committee (NEC) meeting at the hotel in Irene, Pretoria, to dissect the outcome of last week’s local government election results. Although the party led with the most votes nationally, it lost ground in key metros such as Tshwane and the Eastern Cape’s Nelson Mandela Bay. The governing party failed to receive an outright majority in Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni. With no outright majority attained by the parties in the metros, coalitions have to be formed in order to govern.
The ANC managed to garner 48.64% of the votes cast in Ekurhuleni, granting it 109 seats in the 224-seat council. The governing party was also in talks with the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) in Ekurhuleni.
Mhlongo said his party was also talks over the City of Johannesburg.
The party received four seats each in Ekurhuleni, Johannesburg and Eastern Cape’s Buffalo City. It received two seats in the Free State’s Mangaung, three at KwaZulu-Natal’s eThekhwini metro, and secured a seat each in the Western Cape’s City of Cape Town, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay.
The AIC was formed in December 2005 after a municipal boundary dispute in Matatiele. It was formed by former ANC members with the express aim of contesting the 2006 local government elections in a bid to have the town of Matatiele reincorporated back into KwaZulu-Natal from the Eastern Cape.
While the AIC failed to get Matatiele reincorporated, the party has had staying power. In that initial 2006 local government elections it picked up 10 seats and 19 856 votes – all of which were in Matatiele.
Apart from its success in municipal elections, it has managed to get three members elected to parliament, as well as a member elected to the Eastern Cape legislature.
– African News Agency (ANA)