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Port Elizabeth - The African National Congress (ANC) in the Eastern Cape on Friday, retracted an earlier statement that the executive mayor of Mnquma Local Municipality, Ndyebo Skelenge, had resigned after his party membership was suspended, confirming that he was still mayor.

Four ANC council members in the Mnquma Local Municipality in Butterworth, including Skelenge, had their membership suspended by the ANC Provincial Disciplinary Committee for bringing the party into disrepute.

Following the PDC's announcement on Friday, ANC communication officer Judy Mpetsheni then told ANA that Skelenge had resigned.

However, later in an SMS Mpetsheni rectified the statement by saying it was a mistake and Skelenge was still mayor.

When called for comment, Mpetsheni told ANA that rumours were going around that Skelenge had stepped down but that it had been confirmed that this was not case.

One of the sanctions the PDC imposed on Skelenge was a demand to resign earlier this week. Of his failure to do so, Mpetsheni said the party would "wait and see what happens tomorrow".

In a statement on Friday, the PDC said Skelenge’s ANC membership was suspended for five years wholly suspended for one year on condition that he complied with the following conditions:

-He must never be charged for misconduct by the ANC again during the period of one year from the 29th April 2018 .

-Skelenge must resign with immediate effect as the Executive Mayor of the Mnquma Local Municipality no later than May 2.

-Skelenge must facilitate the holding of a special council meeting by the Mnquma Local Municipality to elect a new Executive Mayor no later than May 4.

The committee's chairperson Thokozile Sokanyile said that the four members were found guilty of bringing the ANC into disrepute and contravening rules of the party's constitution.  

The charges against the four were brought by the Provincial Executive Committee (PEC). 

Skelenge, Zibuthe Mnqwazi, Zakhele Mkiva and Luxolo Mngandela were found to have sowed divisions in the council after the ANC's Provincial Executive Committee decided to deploy Thabo Matiwane as the new mayor in March. 

Meanwhile, the ANC in the Eastern Cape welcomed the committee's decision, adding that the party would not tolerate ill-discipline.   

"We would use every opportunity available to encourage members to live and breath the values and culture of the movement." 

 The ANC further called upon its members to respect the decisions of the PDC."

African News Agency/ANA