North West Premier-Elect Bushy Maape sworn-in as MPL
Share this article:
North West Premier-Elect Bushy Maape was sworn in as a member of the provincial legislature in secret after scores of media houses were barred from witnessing the ceremony.
Maape was sworn in following a long battle to find a seat for him in the legislature after former premier Job Mokgoro had initially only stepped down on Wednesday last week as head of the province. A few days later, Mokgoro also agreed to resign his membership of the provincial legislature, which paved the way for Maape.
But the swearing-in happened without any fanfare as the media was denied access to the venue following instructions from the office of Speaker Susan Dantjie on Wednesday.
Media houses raised the concern with ANC provincial co-ordinator Hlomane Chauke, who introduced Maape after the secret function.
While the ANC was expected to outline its vision following the confirmation of Maape’s membership, the party was instead bombarded with concerns about the ill-treatment of journalists who have covered the events since the announcement of Maape as premier-elect, including Mokgoro’s battles with the ANC’s provincial leadership.
In a bid to ease the tensions, Chauke said the ANC would be asking for an explanation from the Office of the Speaker about the reasons for snubbing the media.
Chauke also told the media that Maape’s swearing-in would “allow us to assure the people of South Africa and North West that the ANC wants to deliver services to them”.
“We want to assure the people of North West that we want to implement the manifesto of the ANC,” Chauke said.
Despite promising to keep its good working relations with the media, Chauke barred Maape from addressing the media on his plans if appointed premier next week on Tuesday. According to Chauke, Maape will take his cue from the ANC to make a public announcement saying “If you cross the line, we take you” .
Maape was only allowed to say: “I take this opportunity to greet members of the ANC, ANC Youth League, Women’s League and the Alliance partners including my party the Veterans League. I also thank other members who may not be leaders of structures in the alliance.
“I think I was called to serve. I’ve been called to serve with others,” Maape said.
He promised that he would work with the ANC to serve the people of North West.