South Africa

The axeman strikes: Gordhan sidelined in Zuma’s late-night cabinet reshuffle gamble

By Marianne Thamm 31 March 2017

After a week of high drama, with the country on the edge of its collective seat and while the rand took another severe beating, President Jacob Zuma made an after-midnight announcement of his long-threatened Cabinet reshuffle. By MARIANNE THAMM.

Just after midnight on Thursday President Jacob Zuma, after a night of high-level political manoeuvring, announced his new Cabinet in a short statement. The most significant axing is that of Pravin Gordhan who is to be replaced by Minister of Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba. Gigaba was former Minister of Public Enterprises before being appointed Minister of Home Affairs. Gigaba replaced Minister Barbara Hogan in a Cabinet reshuffle in 2010, this after the Gupta family had offered the post to ANC MP and whistle-blower Vytjie Mentor, who turned them down.

Gigaba has a BA in education and a Masters in social policy.

Sfiso Buthelezi, who was sworn in as an MP in April 2016 and has long been touted as a possible replacement for Gordhan, has been appointed Deputy Minister of Finance, replacing Mcebisi Jonas.

The new members are the following;

MINISTERS

  • Minister of Energy, Mmamoloko “Nkhensani” Kubayi
  • Minister of Transport, Joe Maswanganyi
  • Minister of Finance, Malusi Gigaba
  • Minister of Police, Fikile Mbalula
  • Minister of Public Works, Nathi Nhleko,
  • Minister of Sports and Recreation, Thembelani Nxesi
  • Minister of Tourism, Tokozile Xasa
  • Minister of Public Service and Administration, Faith Muthambi
  • Minister of Home Affairs, Hlengiwe Mkhize
  • Minister of Communications, Ayanda Dlodlo

DEPUTY MINISTERS

  • Deputy Minister of Public Service and Administration, Dipuo Letsatsi-Duba
  • Deputy Minister of Finance, Sifiso Buthelezi
  • Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises, Ben Martins
  • Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture, Maggie Sotyu
  • Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Gratitude Magwanishe
  • Deputy Minister of Communications, Thandi Mahambehlala,
  • Deputy Minister of Tourism, Elizabeth Thabethe
  • Deputy Minister of Police, Bongani Mkongi
  • Deputy Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams
  • Deputy Minister of Small Business Development, Nomathemba November.

Zuma in his statement claimed the changes were made to “improve efficiency and effectiveness” as well as to bring younger MPs and women into the executive. DM

Photo: South African President Jacob Zuma attends the China – South Africa Economy Forum at a hotel in Beijing, China, 05 December 2014. EPA/DIEGO AZUBEL

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