President Jacob Zuma shakes his new State Security Minister, Bongani Bongo's hand after a swearing-in ceremony at Tuynhuys, Cape Town. Picture: Chantall Presence / ANA

Parliament - African National Congress MP Bongani Bongo was officially sworn in as South Africa's new minister of state security on Wednesday.

Bongo was appointed following President Jacob Zuma's surprise reshuffle on Tuesday which saw the South African Communist Party general secretary axed. David Mahlobo, who previously held the state security portfolio,  was moved to energy.

President Jacob Zuma broke away from a cabinet meeting at Tuynhuys, his office at Parliament, to watch Bongo being sworn in by Western Cape judge president John Hlope.

"In terms of the powers vested in me in terms of section 91 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996, I have decided to appoint Bongani Thomas Bongo as a minister for the portfolio of State Security...I now request the judge president to either swear or affirm him into office," Zuma said before Bongo was asked to take his oath of office, not taking any questions from the media on the reshuffle which he has remained silent on.

After Bongo was sworn in and posed for a photo opportunity with Zuma, he thanked the President and his political party, the ruling African National Congress for affording him the opportunity to serve in cabinet.

Bongani Bongo, South Africa's new State Security Minister, speaks to media after being sworn in. Video: Chantall Presence / ANA


"I will provide the required leadership in terms of legislation and policy directive of the country as espoused both in ANC resolutions and the country legislation into attending to national security-related matters," he said.

Bongo would not take questions, saying he needs time to meet his team at State Security and familiarise himself with his new job.

"I've just been sworn in now. I'm looking forward to meet with the team so that we move with serious speed so that we meet the targets that the government has set us in the medium term."