Parallel structures divide the ANC
The ANC Eastern Cape executive committee is on a collision course with the OR Tambo regional leadership after provincial secretary Oscar Mabuyane wrote to the region claiming that the parallel structures some branches had set up were legitimate.
Mabuyane's letter contradicts provincial spokesman Mlibo Qoboshiyane's public statement that all parallel structures would be "disestablished".
"Parallel structures that were formed deliberately to undermine any of the registered branch executives will be disestablished and membership integrated to a ward-based branch," Qoboshiyane had said in a text message.
About 25 branches were recently found by the national auditing team to have parallel structures.
The majority of the affected branches are in King Sabata Dalindyebo area, which recently pledged its support for President Jacob Zuma's second-term bid.
OR Tambo regional chairman Thandekile Sabisa said he was shocked by Mabuyane's letter.
"I have not seen the letter but the regional secretary informed me about it. As far as I know, there is an NEC [national executive committee] decision to assemble a team that will visit OR Tambo to investigate parallel structures and decide on the way forward.
"We were under the impression that, together with the PEC, we would go back to those people, call them under one roof and elect a new structure. What is odd now is that the provincial secretary shows he does not recognise the problem of parallel structures," he said.
In his letter, which he copied to ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, Mabuyane wrote: "In attempting to find a way forward in this matter, the office of the provincial secretary verified the status of these branches in terms of the branches deemed to be in good standing before the recent OR Tambo regional conference."
Four out of five sub-regions were affected by the problem. Port St John's had three affected branches, Nyandeni three, Ingquza Hill two and King Sabata Dalindyebo 14.
All these branches took part in the OR Tambo regional conference, where they were deemed to be in good standing.