President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed an expert panel to assess the government's response to the unrest that swept through KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng three weeks ago. Picture: Elmond Jiyane/GCIS
President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed an expert panel to assess the government's response to the unrest that swept through KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng three weeks ago. Picture: Elmond Jiyane/GCIS

Opposition parties welcome Cabinet reshuffle but say more could have been done

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Aug 5, 2021

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Opposition parties have welcomed changes in Cabinet announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa, saying it will help give direction to the country.

This follows the violence and looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng where buildings were destroyed and infrastructure suffered damages worth billions of rand.

The DA, IFP and EFF said more could have been done in the changes though.

Cosatu said they were disappointed because it was similar faces that have been moved to different portfolios.

DA leader John Steenhuisen said it was regrettable that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni had resigned from his position.

Ramaphosa said he had tried to get Mboweni to stay on in Cabinet after he had wanted to leave earlier, but this time he acceded to his request to leave government.

However, Steenhuisen said the resignation of Zweli Mkhize was long-overdue.

He said it was a good idea that there was now a full-time Minister of Health after the elevation of Dr Joe Phaahla from being deputy minister.

Steenhuisen said he was surprised that Police Minister Bheki Cele managed to keep his job.

EFF national chairperson Ntombovuyo Mente said former Speaker Thandi Modise will be bringing stability to the Department of Defence. They were concerned about lack of action against some of the people involved in wrongdoing in government. She said there was corruption in government, but there was no consequence management.

UDM leader Bantu Holomisa said the ANC was running thin on leadership with some of the appointments made. He said he did not expect Mboweni would be replaced by Enoch Godongwana.

He said in the security cluster Ramaphosa should have fired all three ministers in those portfolios.

Cosatu said it was disappointed with the Cabinet changes as it was more of the same faces.

“We are disappointed that the president recycled the same old guard that has proven itself incapable of fixing our many problems. We are also disappointed that not enough was done to reduce the size of the Cabinet, and to realign the government departments to improve their cooperation and levels of efficiency,” said Cosatu in a statement.

“This reshuffle takes place against the background of the Covid-19 crisis, which continues to impinge upon our country’s economy. The economy is in a deep recession, municipalities are collapsing, Covid-19 continues to ravage the economy and the health system, and state-owned enterprises are in varying stages of collapse,” it said.

Political Bureau

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