Sdumo Dlamini making ‘heartening’ recovery in Durban hospital – Ramaphosa

Outgoing Cosatu president, Sdumo Dlamini, left, and new Cosatu president, Zingiswa Losi, at Gallagher Convention Centre, Johannesburg, 14 July 2014, on the last day of Cosatu's Special Congress. Picture: Nigel Sibanda

The deputy minister has been in hospital for weeks, with some reports even suggesting he may have been poisoned.

After weeks in hospital in Durban amid allegations of a poison plot, the presidency said on Tuesday evening that Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Sdumo Dlamini is still recovering.

“President Cyril Ramaphosa is heartened by the recovery being made by Sdumo Dlamini, who is being treated in a Durban hospital after taking ill on 14 July 2019,” spokesperson Khusela Diko said in a statement.

“President Ramaphosa placed a phone call from Pretoria to Deputy Minister Dlamini in hospital today.

“The President was pleased to hear the Deputy Minister in good spirits and to learn from the Deputy Minister that he was making good progress.”

Ramaphosa wished the deputy minister a speedy and full recovery.

Last week it was reported that Dlamini had been fighting for his life in the intensive care unit after falling sick.

The ministry of agriculture, land reform and rural development confirmed that Dlamini was admitted with a “severe headache”, but they disputed the claim that Dlamini was, or even may have been, poisoned.

Spokesperson Reggie Ngcobo confirmed they were” not aware of any poisoning incident”.

He confirmed that the 53-year-old Dlamini had been on sick leave.

The former president of labour federation Cosatu rose to prominence on the back of supporting Jacob Zuma’s rise to power in the ANC.

Dlamini became the deputy minister in Ramaphosa’s new cabinet in May this year. Cosatu had officially stopped supporting Zuma and threw its weight behind Ramaphosa, a former labour leader himself, to become the next president.

The ANC, in its post national executive committee meeting briefing last week, wished Dlamini well, adding they hoped the cause of his illness was not poisoning.

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