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Labour, civil society react to Ramaphosa's #CabinetReshuffle

President Cyril Ramaphosa. File Image: IOL

President Cyril Ramaphosa. File Image: IOL

Published Feb 27, 2018


Johannesburg - President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet reshuffle has received mixed reviews from civil society and labour organisations.

The civil society and the ANC’s alliance partners on Tuesday expressed their disappointment with Ramaphosa’s decision to keep some ministers that have failed to perform in their previous portfolios.

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Some have also singled out ministers that have been linked to allegations of state capture, such as Malusi Gigaba who has returned to his old portfolio as the minister of home affairs.

Gigaba has been linked to state capture allegations through his previous portfolio as the minister of public enterprises and also at home affairs.

He approved the naturalisation of the Gupta brothers’ naturalisation, but he is also accused of appointing Gupta-linked board members of State Owned Enterprises (SOEs).  

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Although he has not been found guilty of any of the allegations, organisations such as trade union federation Cosatu have expressed their disappointment that he was not removed from Cabinet.

“We remain very uncomfortable with the recycling of Cabinet ministers though; it does not make sense for those ministers accused of corruption to be shifted around the Cabinet, instead of being fired,” said Cosatu on Tuesday.

The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) has also highlighted Gigaba remaining in Cabinet as a concern.

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 “The shifting of Gigaba back to home affairs is ironic given the role he played in facilitating the naturalization of the Guptas. OUTA laid criminal charges against Gigaba last year for his role in state capture,” the organisation said. 

Trade union federation SAFTU said Ramaphosa’s reshuffle proved that he was not serious about dealing with corruption as a couple of compromised ministers remain.

“It vindicates SAFTU’s view that Ramaphosa’s appointment has changed nothing. He has reshuffled names but remains rooted in the corrupt and pro-business ANC led by his predecessor. In particular it is incredible that he has appointed a deputy president, and therefore potential president, who has for years been implicated in of some of the most serious crimes when Premier of Mpumalanga,” said SAFTU.

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Ramaphosa fired a number ministers on Monday night, they include Lynne Brown, Des Van Rooyen, Bongani Bongo, David Mahlobo, Dr Hlengiwe Mkhize, Fikile Mbalula, Joe Maswanganyi, Mosebenzi Zwan and Nathi Nhleko.

Some of these ministers like Zwane and Brown have been linked to allegations of state capture and their removal has been widely welcomed.

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