THERE was a mixture of old and new faces when the DA announced the so-called “shadow cabinet” yesterday.
The party retained its experienced MPs in important portfolios such as the security cluster. Dianne Kohler-Barnard kept her position as DA spokeswoman for the police, with David Maynier keeping his defence portfolio.
Zakhele Mbhele, Premier Helen Zille’s former spokesman, was appointed as deputy shadow minister in the police ministry.
“It was my first identified choice and I am grateful that the leaders have full confidence in me. I have a lot to learn and I am willing to learn from the experienced members of the party. I know the ministry has a lot of challenges, but I am up to the task,” Mbhele said.
“This shadow cabinet will make pragmatic legislative proposals that will tackle South Africa’s problems head on, with a commitment to the creation of real jobs in South Africa.”
He said the shadow cabinet would work to provide robust oversight of government, but would also put alternative solutions on the table.
Former Independent Democrats MPs Haniff Hoosen, Lance Greyling and Joe McGluwa are the DA’s voices on the home affairs, energy, and public service and administration committees, respectively.
Home affairs shadow deputy Annette Lovemore was appointed as basic education shadow minister. Solomon Malatsi, Patricia de Lille’s former spokesman, is sport and recreation shadow minister.
Malatsi said the portfolio met his passion and that his priority was to make sure the country’s sports moved to another level.
James Selfe will head correctional services, and former National Prosecuting Authority senior prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach will lead the justice portfolio.
Former caucus chairman Wilmot James moves to health and his former deputy, Geordin Hill-Lewis, takes over in the trade and industry committee.
“We followed a rigorous interview process with individual MPs in our caucus. I have sought to place members in portfolios where they are not only fit for purpose, but are passionate about the work of their portfolios and are also fully capable of providing leadership in their respective portfolio allocations,” the DA’s parliamentary leader, Mmusi Maimane, said.
Sej Motau will watch the presidency, while Nosimo Balindlela will be water and sanitation spokeswoman.