Ntombela remains in the hot seat

2019-05-15 06:00
Sisi Ntombela with Judge Mojalefa Rampai during a swearing-in ceremony in 2014. Photos: Teboho Setena

Sisi Ntombela with Judge Mojalefa Rampai during a swearing-in ceremony in 2014. Photos: Teboho Setena

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Incumbent Free State Premier Sefora Sisi Ntom­bela (62) remains in the hot seat following the ANC’s decision to retain her in the current influential position.

The ANC’s National Executive Committee announced on Monday (13/05) the appointment of Ntombela along with seven other premiers to lead the ruling party in the provinces it attained majority votes.

The Western Cape was retained by the opposition, the DA.

Ntombela becomes the sixth Free State premier, and fourth female elected to this position.

Her women predecessors are Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri (1996-1999), Winkie Direko (1999-2004) and Beatrice Marshoff (2004-2009).

Ntombela previously served as the MEC for Cooperative Governance, Traditional Affairs and Human Settlements (Cogta) and Social Development from 2009. She is also the deputy president of the ANC’s Women’s League.

Ntombela succeeds Elias Ace Magashule (60), who was elected as the ANC’s secretary general at the ruling party’s national congress in December.

Ntombela has been in the position since March last year following Magashule’s election as the national secretary general of the ANC. Magashule is the only premier to have held two-centres of power – that of premier and chairperson.

Sam Mashinini is the current ANC chairperson in the province following his election to replace Magashule, who served as premier during the era of former president Jacob Zuma.

Mashinini has had a lengthy stint as secretary general of Cosatu in the province.

Magashule was the second male premier after Patrick Terror Lekota, who served from 1994 to 1996. Lekota, now president of Cope, was removed as premier in 1996 following bitter infighting for power within the ANC provincial leadership.

He served as the national chairperson of the ANC from 1997 to 2007 and as Minister of Defence (1999 to 2008).

  • Lekota severed ties with the ruling party in 2008 upon the formation of Cope. The premiers announced in the other provinces are Oscar Mabuyane (Eastern Cape), David Makhura (Gauteng), Sihle Zikalala (KwaZulu-Natal), Stan Mathabathe (Limpopo), Refilwe Mtsweni (Mpumalanga), Zamani Saul (Northern Cape) with the premier of the North West to be announced. Alan Winde (DA) is the premier of the Western Cape.
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