Goodbyes for Manuel and Motlanthe, but not for Gordhan

2014-03-11 08:47

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Parliament will bid farewell to Planning Minister Trevor Manuel and Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe today, hours after the ANC hands over its parliamentary candidate lists to the Independent Electoral Commission.

Manuel and Motlanthe, who are still popular in the ANC, have apparently declined nomination to the lists.

Farewell tributes to both have been scheduled as the last items on Parliament’s programme for the National Assembly today, which is scheduled to sit from 2pm to 8pm.

No farewells have, however, been scheduled for Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan who will reach retirement age this year.

There has been speculation that he would retire this year, but he has refused to answer questions about that and told journalists he served at the pleasure of the ANC and the president.

Manuel, who has overseen the drafting of the National Development Plan (NDP), government’s 2030 plan will, for the first time in 20 years, not be up for election as an ANC public representative although he has been campaigning for the party in this year’s election campaigns.

Motlanthe was brought in as minister without portfolio in the presidency in July 2008. A few months later, he was appointed president after Thabo Mbeki was asked to step down.

He contested President Jacob Zuma for the ANC’s presidency in Mangaung in 2012 and lost.

Motlanthe was supposed to head the ANC’s political school, which has not yet got off the ground, but it is unclear what else he would be doing.

Manuel was elected an ANC MP in 1994 and became minister of finance in 1996.

In 2009, he was made planning minister and charged with drafting the NDP.

Manuel, who came out tops in the party’s election of its national executive committee in 2002, gave an early indication that he would step away from politics when he declined to be nominated to the committee in Mangaung.

ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe will address a press conference in Centurion after handing over the party lists to the IEC at its offices there.

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