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ANC structures in Alexandra, Johannesburg, are unhappy that the party's headquarters Luthuli House has not defended its leaders who have been dubbed the "Alex Mafia".
The ANC in the township has mandated its zonal leaders to write a letter to the provincial and head office to complain about their silence over "attacks meted out against Alex leaders".
Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture and chairperson of the ANC in Gauteng Paul Mashatile, ANC spokesperson in Gauteng Nat Kekana, Gauteng civil servant Keith Khoza and former government agency executive Mike Maile are believed to be the main supporters of the alleged mafia.
The "mafia" members are alleged to have benefitted from multimillion-rand tender deals unfairly awarded to their companies.
ANC zonal chairperson of Alexandra Justice Ngalonkulu confirmed the ANC members' displeasure at some members in the township but insisted that it was an internal matter.
"It's an insult when leaders from Alexandra are called the mafia without any basis," said Ngalonkulu.
He said discussions were continuing with the ANC in Alexandra but no decision had been made on how to defend the leaders who were referred to as the mafia.
"We do not know why there is an agenda to call present leaders mafia," he said.
He said it was disheartening for the township's residents to refer to their leaders as the "Alex Mafia" and said members of the ANC in the township had not even benefitted from local projects.
ANC spokesperson Brian Sokutu said the party had only read about the so-called Alex mafia in the media.
"It is unsubstantiated. We cannot respond to rumours."
Other sources allege that the Alex mafia tag is used by Mashatile's opponents to discredit him ahead of the elective provincial congress next year.