Free State executive to be announced

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iol news pic Ace Magashule

Independent Newspapers

Free State Premier Ace Magashule File picture: Bongiwe Mchunu

Bloemfontein - The Free State's new provincial executive will be announced on Thursday, spokesman Mondli Mvambi said on Tuesday.

“There is no need to rush while considering how and who would respond properly to the genuine concerns of people in the province,” said Mvambi.

He was reacting to a Democratic Alliance allegation that premier Ace Magashule was resting on his laurels in announcing his executive committee.

“We are concerned this delay would further exacerbate serious problems within the provincial departments of health and education,” DA caucus leader Roy Jankielsohn said in a statement.

Mvambi said the executive council would be announced in Welkom on Thursday.

The premier had been consulting on the most suitable candidates to lead departments since his inauguration.

Mvambi indicated Magashule was also consulting on how best to respond to concerns raised during the recent election campaign.

Jankielsohn said the new MECs had a lot of work to do and Magashule's delayed announcement was ironic.

“It is ironic premier Magashule at his election to the premiership last week stated that 'now was the time to work for the people of the Free State', and yet no work has begun.”

Jankielsohn said various Free State medical facilities suffered food, medicine, and critical professional medical staff shortages.

“The provincial department of health is in serious financial difficulty.”

The health department entered the current financial year with R700 million in accrued shortfalls and currently required “intensive care”.

Jankielsohn said the Free State education department also entered the financial year with a R1.2 billion shortfall.

“It would not have enough money available to improve the province's education system and serious concerns exist about the department's ability to meet its financial obligations,” he said.

Jankielsohn urged Magashule to stop resting in a province that had the highest unemployment rate in the country, poor road infrastructure and municipal service delivery, and a growing dependency on government grants.

Mvambi said the premier was well within the law with the announcement of the executive.

Sapa


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