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The administration of the Eastern Province Rugby Union (EPRU) is set to be returned to local hands following a series of ground-breaking decisions at a special general meeting in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.

EPRU’s affairs had been placed into the administrative control of SA Rugby – at the union’s invitation – in April 2016 to help regularise the union’s affairs as it faced a number of financial challenges. SA Rugby ensured the union’s playing commitments were fulfilled in conjunction and with the help of the liquidator.

SA Rugby continued to work in the background drafting a new pathway and plan for the administration of the Union.

A critical part of that plan was the adoption of a new constitution and executive structure – drafted by SA Rugby – which was passed on Saturday night. The new constitution and structure triggers new elections for office bearers which, once completed, pave the way for SA Rugby to withdraw its administrator and interim chairman.

The liquidation of EP Rugby (Pty) Ltd – the commercial arm of the EPRU – will continue in parallel. It is hoped that that process will now have a more positive outcome than was expected, clearing the way for a recapitalisation plan to move ahead with interested local parties.

Mr Mark Alexander, president of SA Rugby, addressed the meeting. He said: “I’d like to commend the Eastern Province rugby community for looking forward and accepting SA Rugby’s proposals. This has been a difficult period for the union but there is now a clear way forward for rugby to restore itself to an even keel.”

A notice calling for nominations for the new executive and new office bearers will go out to member clubs shortly.

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