Chabane pledges support for Manyi
Johannesburg - Performance Monitoring and Evaluation Minister Collins Chabane pledged his support to Jimmy Manyi on Tuesday as calls mounted for the beleaguered government spokesperson's head.
Chabane said he had noted "repeated calls" in the media calling for Manyi to be fired for making racist remarks about coloureds and Indians.
"Mr Jimmy Manyi remains the Cabinet spokesperson and the chief executive officer of GCIS, and continues to execute his responsibilities," Chabane said.
Manyi said in a show broadcast on kykNET's Robinson Regstreeks in March 2010 that there was an "over supply" of coloureds in the Western Cape. At the time he was labour department director-general.
In an address to the Durban Chamber of Commerce, also in 2010, Manyi said: "Indians, we should be having only 3% [of positions on management]. They are sitting at 5.9%.
"I call it the power of bargaining. Indians have bargained their way to the top."
Chabane said Manyi, in executing his duties, had a responsibility to represent the views and decisions of government and not those of his own.
"The minister further expresses confidence in the ability of (Mr) Manyi to execute his duties.
"He will continue to receive the support of the ministry and should be given an opportunity to prove himself in his new role," Chabane said.
Manyi's comments have split the ANC.
Last week National Planning Minister Trevor Manuel wrote an open letter to Manyi calling him a "worst-order racist".
ANC ally, the SA Municipal Workers' Union, along with opposition parties and other trade unions, has called for Manyi to be fired.
But earlier on Tuesday, ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe's came to Manyi's defence, blaming the controversies surrounding the ANC on "racial prejudice" and "hatred for change", while giving tongue-lashings to Manuel and Samwu.