Pretoria – While the removal of Blade Nzimande as the Higher Education and Training Minister is regrettable, it was not unexpected.The Higher Education Transformation Network (HETN) said this following President Jacob Zuma's Cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday. "The Higher Education Transformation Network learns with shock of the removal of Dr Blade Nzimande as Minister of Higher Education.This development is most regrettable, but not unexpected in the current political climate of the country," the network's chairperson Reginald Legoabe said. The HETN is an independent non-profit network of graduates and alumni from various higher education and further educational institutions across South Africa committed to the process of transformation of education and training.News24 reported earlier that former Home Affairs Minister Hlengiwe Mkhize had been shifted to the higher education portfolio to replace Nzimande. LIVE: #CabinetReshuffle - 'Removal of Blade a direct attack on the SACP'The only new addition is the relatively unknown Bongani Thomas Bongo, who was appointed state security minister.Legoabe said: "We wish to thank Dr Nzimande for his immense contribution to the development of the South African higher education, further education and skills development sectors, as well as the human resources development programmes of the country."The sudden removal of Dr Nzimande is bound to affect the higher education sector and we hope that the new incumbent will not seek to radically change or reverse the immense policy milestones achieved by Dr Nzimande and his management team." The network was briefing the media in Pretoria and calling on President Jacob Zuma to release the fees commission report investigating the feasibility of fee-free higher education and training in South Africa.Zuma established the commission in January 2016, after university students from across the country embarked on a violent nationwide Fees Must Fall protests toward the end of 2015.They were demanding free education following the proposed 2016 fee increments.