Ramaphosa’s major Cabinet reshuffle

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced some major changes to his Cabinet, last night, 5 August, as part of improving the capacity of the government.

Three of the major changes are: Minister Tito Mboweni has been replaced by Enoch Godongwana previously, Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises; Lindiwe Sisulu, Former Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister, has been appointed as the Minister of Tourism; and Thandi Modise, who served as Speaker of the National Assembly, is now the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans.

A fourth major change is the abandoning of the Ministry of State Security and placing political responsibility for the State Security Agency within the Presidency. Of the latter Ramahosa said: “This is to ensure that the country’s domestic and foreign intelligence services more effectively enable the President to exercise his responsibility to safeguard the security and integrity of the nation.” he said.

The Deputy Minister in the Presidency responsible for state security is Zizi Kodwa. In addition, the President announced the appointment of Dr Sydney Mufamadi as National Security Adviser, to improve support to the President and the National Security Council in the strategic management of the country’s security. This position has been vacant since Charles Nqakula stepped down earlier this year.

In making the changes and referring to the challenges faced by South Africa requiring several tasks to be undertaken at once, Ramaphosa also said: “I am making changes to the National Executive to improve the capacity of government to effectively undertake these tasks.” The changes to the National Executive, come at a time when the government is facing several challenges, including re-working to accelerate its vaccination programme to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic, and at the same time, working to ensure peace and stability in the wake of the recent outbreak of violence and destruction in parts of the country.

In announcing the changes, President said some of them included a number of vacancies to be filled. For one, a vacancy arose a request from Minister Zwelini Mkhize to step down as the Minister of Health in order to bring certainty and stability to this important portfolio, Dr Joe Phaahla has been appointed as the new Minister of Health. He served as Deputy Minister of Health from 30 May 2019 to 5 August 2021. “I am grateful to Minister Mkhize for his service, and particularly for the outstanding leadership he has provided in the face of the worst pandemic in over a century.
“I have also accepted a long-standing request by Minister Tito Mboweni to be excused from his position as Minister of Finance,” the President announced.

Minister Mboweni took up this position following the sudden departure of former Minister Nhlanhla Nene in October 2018. Since then, he has effectively and ably steered National Treasury through extremely difficult economic times, providing stability and instilling confidence. “I am grateful to Minister Mboweni for responding to the call to serve our nation at its time of need.”

His replacement, Minister Godongwana, had also previously served Deputy Minister of Economic Development (1 November to 2012).
The President also announced the new appointments of the following Ministers:

  • Mondli Gungubele, who served as chair of Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Social Development, was appointed as Minister in the Presidency. He takes over this portfolio following the passing away of Minister Jackson Mthembu.
  • Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, who served as acting Minister in the Presidency as well as Minister of Small Business Development, has moved over to become Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies.
  • Former Minister of Tourism Mmamoloko Kubayi has been appointed as the Minister of Human Settlements
  • Ayanda Dlodlo moves over from State Security to Public Service and Administration.
  • Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, the former Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies, has been moved to the Small Business Development Department.
  • The new Minister of Water and Sanitation is the former Minister of Public Service and Administration, Senzo Mchunu.

With respect to Deputy Ministers, the President made the following appointments:

  • Pinky Kekana who served as Deputy Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies is now the second Deputy Minister in the Presidency.
  • Zoleka Capa takes over as Deputy Minister of Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Land Reform.
  • Philly Mapulane is the new Deputy Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies.
  • The Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Deputy Minister is Thembi Nkadimeng.
  • Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo has been appointed as the Deputy Minister of Health.
  • Dr Nobuhle Nkabane is new Mineral Resources and Energy Minister
  • Dr Chana Pilane-Majake has been appointed as Deputy Minister of Public Service and Administration.
  • Sdumo Dlamini appointed as Deputy Minister of Small Business Development.
  • Sindisiwe Chikunga has been appointed as Deputy Minister of Transport.
  • Dikeledi Magadzi as Deputy Minister of Water and Sanitation.

Changes in the configuration of departments:
Among the other changes announced by the President is the separation of the Ministry of Human Settlements from the Ministry of Water and Sanitation. The two portfolios were brought together understanding that the provision of water is closely tied to the development of human settlements.
“However, the reality is that water is a far broader issue, impacting not only on human settlements, but also on agriculture, industry, mining and environmental management. “
The separation he said, will enable a dedicated focus on ensuring that all South Africans have access to a secure and sustainable supply of water.

Edited by Bev Mortimer

  • Source: SANews