What has JZ got up his sleeve?

2014-05-24 00:00

CAPE TOWN — The ousted Gauteng premier, Nomvula Mokonyane, could be the big surprise in President Jacob Zuma’s new cabinet.

Mokonyane, who wasn’t elected as an MP, would still qualify under the law that allows the president to bring in two outsiders. In his previous cabinet, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan was not an MP.

Former police commissioner Bheki Cele, who was replaced under a cloud, is also rumoured to be in line. He was number one on the parliamentary list submitted by the ANC in KZN.

It is expected that Zuma will amalgamate the departments of Sport and of Arts, and Cele could be given that portfolio.

It is also well known that Nathi Mthethwa does not want to continue as minister of Police. Where he could be moved to and who would replace him is not clear.

The cabinet careers of Lulu Xingwana (Women, Children and People with Disabilities) and Mildred Oliphant (Labour) are hanging by a thread, and there is also a good chance that Paul Mashatile will not return. He is not a Zuma confidant.

Lesser known names who could join the cabinet are Fikile Xhasa from the Eastern Cape and Thoko Didiza, who would be returning.

Presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj said yesterday Zuma already knows who he will name.

“The process of consultation with leaders of the ANC and other structures is complete. Now the president will wait until after his inauguration to inform everyone. Precisely when that will be, only the president knows.”

ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said this week the cabinet would include representatives of all South Africans.

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