Ramathuba retains embattled Radzilani, lets go of ANC heavyweights

Limpopo premier Phophi Ramathuba.

Limpopo premier Phophi Ramathuba.

Published Jun 19, 2024


Newly elected Limpopo premier Phophi Ramathuba has retained embattled former Vhembe mayor Florence Radzilani in her executive committee.

Radzilani, who is the provincial deputy chairperson, was demoted to the Department of Social Development from the Transport and Community Safety position.

A cloud has been hanging over her head in relation to the looting of the VBS Mutual Bank in Thohoyandou.

She had to vacate her office as Vhembe mayor after the 2018 “The Great Bank Heist” report penned by advocate Terry Motau that blew the lid off the VBS scandal.

However, she was elected deputy chairperson of the Limpopo provincial executive committee at a later stage, paving the way for her to become an MEC in then-premier Stan Mathabatha’s administration.

During the 2022 ANC elective conference at Nasrec, Radzilani disregarded the provincial executive committee’s directive to vote on President Cyril Ramaphosa’s slate, in support of Dr Zweli Mkhize, who lost.

Ramathuba announced her new cabinet this week, leaving out ANC provincial heavyweights who are in the PEC like Thabo Mokone, Rogers Monama and Nkakareng Rakgoale.

However, she retained Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs MEC Basikopo Makamu in the same position while moving former Arts and Culture MEC Nakedi Sibanda to Agriculture and Rural Development.

Mavhungu Lerule-Ramakhanya retained her Education portfolio.

Some of the new appointments were little-known Dieketseng Masesi Mashego, who replaces Ramathuba as Health MEC. Jerry Maseko takes the Sport, Arts and Culture MEC position. Kgabo Elias Mahoai is at Treasury while the Economic Development, Environment and Tourism MEC is Tshitereke Matibe.

Included in the executive is provincial ANC Youth League chairperson Tonny Rachoene at Public Works, Roads and Infrastructure while Violet Mathye occupies Transport and Community Safety.

Speaking at the announcement, Ramathuba said her new executive would bring a wealth of experience, dedication, and a deep commitment to serving South Africans.

“They have been chosen for their proven track records, their expertise in their respective fields, and their unwavering commitment to the values and principles that underpin our democracy.

“As we embark on this journey together, our primary focus will be on addressing the pressing challenges that our province faces, including economic growth, unemployment, job creation, industrialisation, agriculture and rural development, water provision, roads and general infrastructure development, health care, education and crime.

“We are committed to fostering an inclusive and transparent government that works tirelessly to improve the lives of all our citizens,” she said.

Ramathuba said she had full confidence in the capabilities of the newly appointed executive council members.

“I call upon all citizens of Limpopo to join us in this endeavour. Your active participation, feedback and collaboration are essential as we strive to build a better future for all,” Ramathuba said.

“Let us move forward with unity, determination and a shared commitment to the progress and well-being of our province,” she said.

The Star

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