Newly-elected KZN premier Sihle Zikalala. Picture: MotshwarI Mofokeng/African News Agency(ANA)

Durban - The African National Congress (ANC) in KwaZulu-Natal on Tuesday said it was pleased with the overall establishment of the 6th provincial government administration and was, in particular, satisfied with the talent deployed.

"We reiterate the statement made by the ANC Provincial Chairperson Cde Sihle Zikalala, in his capacity as the Premier, that the members of the new provincial executive council will prioritize service delivery as opposed to advancing narrow political interests," it said.

"Since we attained democracy 25 years ago, the democratic government led by the ANC has used all organs of the state to ensure that citizens feel part of the process of the creation of a Better Life for All. It is for these reasons we are confident that the next five years of this term of office will be characterized by speed and selfless service to the people."

This as Velenkosini Hlabisa, who leads the IFP in its role as the official opposition in KZN, slammed the new provincial cabinet, saying his party was concerned about the appointment of "unqualified" MECs and the recycling of "disreputable characters".

The new members of the executive council, announced by the Premier Sihle Zikalala on Monday, include Ravi Pillay as provincial treasury, Kwazi Mshengu in Education, Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu as health MEC, Sipho Hlomuka as MEC for co-operative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta), Peggy Nkonyeni as MEC for public works, while Nomsa Dube-Ncube was moved to economic development, tourism and environmental affairs and Mxolisi Kaunda remained as MEC for transport, community safety and liaison.

Hlabisa said Mshengu's appointment as the MEC for education left much to be desired as his experience and qualifications made him not equal to the deep challenges experienced by the education department. 

He said the appointment of Simelane-Zulu into the Health Department was also a big challenge because "she will not have command and authority in the medical field."

But the ANC in KZN said it had deployed seasoned cadres, energetic and critical thinkers who will strengthen the provincial legislature’s role of legislation, oversight and ensuring accountability to the public. 

"We are confident that the new members of the provincial executive council will play a vigorous oversight role over government departments to ensure accountability in the use of taxpayers’ money," it said.

"They will also institute necessary interventions for the acceleration of service delivery in both the provincial government and in municipalities."

African News Agency/ANA