Johannesburg - The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday bemoaned media reports questioning the authenticity of the province's membership figures.
“Without consulting us for clarification, some media organisations have looked at our figures with jaundiced eyes and crafted flawed analysis which has unfortunately misled the public as they created a wrong picture that we may have used underhand tactics to up our figures,” provincial secretary Sihle Zikalala said in a statement.
“One wonders if the principles of analysing politics have been tossed out of the window.”
He said reports that KwaZulu-Natal's membership had increased by 79 183 in just a month was misleading.
Earlier this month the African National Congress' national executive committee announced that KwaZulu-Natal's membership had grown by 90 000 between January and September this year.
This was after the party concluded its branch audits and officially opened the nomination debate for new leadership which will be elected in Mangaung in December.
The province is the ANC's biggest and will send 974 delegates to the conference.
Zikalala said the recruitment of members was an “intensive exercise” that involved a lot of planning, time, hard work and resources.
Part of the recruitment campaign was going on door-to-door visits across the province.
“Last year, we took a decision to intensify our recruitment campaign which formed part of the imvuselelo campaign, a huge national recruitment campaign which saw the ANC reaching a million members before its centenary in January this year,” he said.
“Our target was to reach 350,000 membership before the end of this year.”
After conducting a membership audit late last year KwaZulu-Natal's numbers sat at 244 900 and after an audit earlier this year, done just before the provincial congress, the number was 252 637, said Zikalala.
The current number after the most recent audit was 331 820.
“In actual fact, we have more than that because the recruitment of members is an on-going process. Many new members have been recruited after the audit cut-off date for the national conference and they have not been included in this total membership figure,” he said.
Zikalala said people questioning the growth in the province should do their homework.