Speculation rife ahead of Cabinet appointments

2014-05-24 19:56

President Jacob Zuma is expected to announce his Cabinet tomorrow, following his inauguration for a second term.

There has been much speculation in recent weeks about his new Cabinet, but appointments have in the past changed minutes before they were announced.

In recent days, a list did the rounds on phone text messages suggesting that former Gauteng premier Nomvula Mokonyane could be moved to Water Affairs, an important service delivery portfolio.

Earlier speculation had it that she could go to the newly merged social development and women’s portfolio, but Thoko Didiza has also been mentioned in this regard.

» Talk to us: Who would you like to see in Zuma’s Cabinet?

Jeff Radebe could go to the Presidency to do monitoring and evaluation, while Collins Chabane, in turn, would get the justice portfolio.

Such a move would align Radebe’s role in the ANC as policy head with his work in government, but an earlier round of speculation had it that he could go to the important portfolio of defence.

But this week’s speculation had Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula remaining in that position – a wish she had expressed to Afrikaans daily Beeld in an interview less than two weeks ago.

Pravin Gordhan could stay in finance, reflecting Zuma’s wish that government should steer the economy on much the same path as it had been in his first term.

Maite Nkoana-Mashabane is rumoured to be returning to international relations, while the economic development or small and medium enterprises ministries could see Malusi Gigaba heading it.

He could also go to trade and industry.

This move would give Gigaba the international exposure he needs to move higher up in government and the party in future, the text message said.

Others are speculating that Nathi Mthethwa or Ebrahim Patel could go to the small and medium enterprises department.

Susan Shabangu could remain in mining, something that could disappoint bosses in the industry because of her average performance to date, while Mthethwa could be moved from police to energy.

Speculation has it that Siyabonga Cwele could be moved to police while Lindiwe Zulu takes his place in state security.

Newcomer to Parliament and former Eastern Cape MEC for economic development Mcebisi Jonas could take up Gigaba’s former position in public enterprises.

Bathabile Dlamini, Lindiwe Sisulu and Edna Molewa could return to Cabinet, but it is unclear to which ministries. Max Sisulu, the former National Assembly speaker, is also rumoured to be heading for the executive.

Fikile Mbalula and Paul Mashatile are set to remain in sport and arts and culture, respectively.

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