ANC-DA squabbles over ‘unreasonable’ cabinet demands spark debate about GNU

ANC Secretary General Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Phando Jikelo/Independent Newspapers

ANC Secretary General Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Phando Jikelo/Independent Newspapers

Published Jun 25, 2024


The ANC has raised concerns over what it calls “outlandish” and outrageous demands from the DA regarding cabinet positions for the Government of National Unity.

The ANC secretary general Fikile Mbalula accused the DA, their biggest partner in the GNU, of using leaks and of negotiating in bad faith.

“It is only the President (Cyril Ramaphosa) who has the final say on the appointment of his Cabinet. The GNU cannot be held to ransom by any single party. The people need a government to be established sooner, rather than later.”

In a letter from the DA’s Helen Zille to Mbalula, the party said it wanted 11 ministries, including international relations, higher education, transport and trade and industry - and John Steenhuisen to be appointed deputy president or within the Presidency.

In the letter, the party also threatened to leave the GNU and withdraw its support for the Provincial Government of Unity in KZN and Gauteng.

The ANC’s concern have sparked a mixed reaction from the public on X with some supporting the party’s stance and others criticising as inflexible.

Goolam from X commented, “Just pure class from Fikile Mbalula. Such maturity and dignity. Well done Mbaks.”

“You were told that DA is not for your good and you thought you are wiser”, commented Academia on X.

Siya then commented that they chose DA over everyone else. He said: “None of you thought that ANC and DA are fundamentally at the opposite ends on anything about South Africa.”

“To be honest you are the worst general secretary of ANC, you have failed South African people look now you are dancing for Cyril, maybe this is the end of ANC”, commented Kgadi custy on X.

Ramaphosa is expected to announce his Cabinet this week. It is expected to include members of the ANC, DA, IFP, PA, FF+, PAC and other parties who joined the GNU.

On Tuesday, 58 MK Party members were sworn-in. The party is expected to become the official opposition after the DA opted to join the GNU.