Maimane shuffles DA 'shadow cabinet' after Wilmot James takes sabbatical

2017-06-01 15:39
Mmusi Maimane. (Pic: Liza van Deventer/Foto24)

Mmusi Maimane. (Pic: Liza van Deventer/Foto24)

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Cape Town – With Democratic Alliance MP Dr Wilmot James temporarily leaving politics for more academic pastures, DA leader Mmusi Maimane has made a reshuffle of his own.

James will be on a sabbatical in order to take up a visiting professorship at the University of Columbia Medical Centre in New York.

"We wish to congratulate Dr James on this prestigious appointment, and wish him very well for his time at Columbia. His work on infectious diseases is a credit to South African health sciences and to the Democratic Alliance," said Graham Charters, Maimane's spokesperson, in a statement on Thursday morning.

James is replaced as the spokesperson on health by Patricia Kopane, former spokesperson on public works.

Furthermore, MPs Gavin Davis and Geordin Hill-Lewis have been relieved of spokesperson duties.

Davis will be focusing on policy development and communications ahead of the 2019 elections, and Hill-Lewis will be focusing full-time on his duties as Maimane's chief of staff.

Charters confirmed that Davis and Hill-Lewis would stay on as MPs. He added that these moves had a knock-on effect, resulting in the following changes to what the DA calls its "shadow cabinet".

• Malcolm Figg replaces Kopane as the Shadow Minister of Public Works.

• Alan McLoughlin replaces Figg as the Shadow Minister of Appropriations, with Brandon Topham as his deputy.

• Ian Ollis replaces Davis as the Shadow Minister of Basic Education. Michael Bagraim replaces Ollis as Shadow Minister of Labour, with Derrick America as the Shadow Deputy Minister of Labour.

• Dean Macpherson replaces Hill-Lewis as the Shadow Minister of Trade and Industry.

• Ghaleb Cachalia assumes the position of Shadow Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry.

• Mbulelo Bara replaces Tarnia Baker as the Shadow Deputy Minister of Human Settlements. Ms Baker will focus on her work as Shadow Deputy Minister of Water and Sanitation.

• Choloane Matsepe replaces Bara as Shadow Deputy Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs.

These changes take effect immediately.

James said farewell to the National Assembly on Wednesday by leaving with DA MP David Maynier, who had been asked to leave the House after he refused to withdraw his remark that President Jacob Zuma reshuffled his Cabinet at the Gupta's behest.

Maynier was James' campaign manager when James challenged Maimane for the DA's leadership in 2015.

Read more on:    da  |  mmusi maimane  |  cape town  |  politics  |  cabinet reshuffle

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