South Africa's COPE Party May Split as Meeting Fails, Business Day Says

South Africa’s Congress of the People, the third-largest political party, may not have its elective conference for a second time this year because of fighting and allegations of irregularities, Business Day reported, citing an unidentified party official.

Should COPE not hold elections, a call for a split between rival groups may gain momentum, the Johannesburg-based newspaper said. The conference was meant to start on Dec. 15. A meeting in May broke down because of fighting between supporters of Mosiuoa Lekota, the party’s president and Mbhazima Shilowa, its deputy president, Business Day said, citing the official.

To contact the reporters on this story: Ron Derby in Johannesburg at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Amanda Jordan at

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