President Jacob Zuma’s surprise Cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday morning came as no surprise and was a move aimed at getting rid of anyone who opposes state capture, South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), said.
The reshuffle saw Blade Nzimande, South African Communist Party general secretary and a former supporter of Zuma turned fierce critic, axed. Several other ministers were moved to different portfolios.
“The obvious target was SACP leader, Dr. Blade Nzimande, who follows Pravin Gordhan, Derek Hanekom, Mcebisi Jonas and others who have failed to toe the Zuma line and have found themselves out of office,” DA leader Mmusi Maimane said in a statement.
“The SACP has been dealt an insulting blow, and they must now decide how long they will put up with this abuse, or if they will now do what they know is right, and begin to work outside the ANC.”
Maimane said he believed the appointment of David Mahlobo as energy minister was meant to secure a multibillion-rand nuclear deal between South Africa and Russia.
“This reshuffle has nothing to do with effecting good governance, and ensuring the best people serve our country. On the contrary, Jacob Zuma appears to be firing his critics, and offering promotions in exchange for support ahead of the ANC’s elective conference in December this year.”