No holding back as Zuma makes bold moves

2012-06-12 20:40
President Jacob Zuma (File, Die Burger)

President Jacob Zuma (File, Die Burger)

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Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday announced the dismissal of General Bheki Cele as national police chief, and several changes to the national executive.

He told reporters in Pretoria he had decided to "release" Cele following a recommendation by the board of inquiry into his conduct, led by Justice Jake Moloi.

"Having thoroughly considered the report of the board, and applied my mind thereto, I have decided to release General Cele from his duties," Zuma said.

Mangwashi Victoria Phiyega replaces Cele. She is currently the chair of the presidential review committee on state owned enterprises, and deputy chair of the independent commission on the remuneration of office bearers.

Phiyega has considerable management experience, she has been a trustee of Nelson Mandela's foundation and an executive at Barclays-owned banking group Absa.

"Ms Phiyega brings a wealth of experience as a senior executive, who understands the responsibility of government in the fight against crime, and the duties imposed in dealing with state assets," Zuma said.

"I have every confidence that she will show leadership and acquit herself well as national commissioner. We wish her all the best in her new assignment."

The president announced the appointment of several new ministers and deputy ministers.

Three years into his term, Zuma has become known for regular cabinet reshuffles, the previous one being conducted less than a year ago.

In the reshuffle of key cabinet posts, former correctional services minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula was moved to replace unpopular defence minister Lindiwe Sisulu, who now heads public services and administration, a post that has been vacant since the death of minister Roy Padayachie.

Transport minister Sibusiso Ndebele was also axed after a disastrous tolling project on Johannesburg's main roads was stalled amid public protests, and takes up Mapisa-Nqakula's post at correctional services.

Public Enterprises Deputy Minister Ben Martins will replace Ndebele as minister of transport.

Sindisiwe Chikunga will be Martin’s deputy in the transport department, where she replaces Jeremy Cronin who takes up the post of deputy public works minister.

Gratitude Magwanishe is the new deputy public enterprises minister, Hlengiwe Mkhize the new deputy economic development minister, Mduduzi Manana the new deputy higher education minister

- SAPA
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