JOHANNESBURG – Deputy President David Mabuza and Minister of Women in the Presidency Bathabile Dlamini will reportedly be excluded from President Cyril Ramaphosa’s reconfigured Cabinet following this month’s general elections.
The Sunday Times reported that sources close to the president said he was willing to risk a backlash from African National Congress (ANC) structures that supported Dlamini – who’s also the president of the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) – by overlooking her for a Cabinet post.
According to the publication, a deal was apparently being brokered that could see Mabuza deployed to Luthuli House as the governing party’s highest-ranking full-time functionary, with ANC treasurer general Paul Mashatile set to move to the Union Buildings as the country’s second in command.
Those close to Mabuza claimed that he was extremely reluctant to return to the Union Buildings, saying he preferred to rather consolidate his power base in the ANC, particularly in his home province of Mpumalanga.
Unspecified health concerns were also cited as among Mabuza’s reasons to exit his current post.
Sources also claimed that Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane was unlikely to return to the national executive.
ANC national executive committee members (NEC) expected to be in the new executive apparently included new faces David Masondo, Ronald Lamola, and Zizi Kodwa.
RAMAPHOSA TO MEET WITH ANCWL
Ramaphosa will reportedly meet with the ANCWL on Sunday to give assurances that there would be adequate women representation in his new Cabinet.
The league had called on the president to ensure that he appointed a Cabinet with half of the office bearers being women. They had made a similar call leading up to the ANC’s nomination of premier candidates, but their expectations were not met.
The ANCWL said it was deeply disappointed after only two of the eight provinces the party governs would be led by women.
There was mounting pressure on Ramaphosa to choose wisely when putting together his Cabinet with economists and political analysts warning that the country’s political future hinges on the decision.
The ANC president recently told investors that he would pick men and women in his Cabinet who would help achieve his goal to grow the economy.
Ramaphosa was expected to announce his government after his inauguration on Saturday at Loftus Versfeld Stadium.