Why deputy ministers hardly ever get the top post

2015-12-10 14:05
Nhlanhla Nene

Nhlanhla Nene

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Van Rooyen's track record isn't very 'illuminating' - analyst

2015-12-10 13:08

Well known political economy analyst Daniel Silke joined us in studio to weigh in on the surprise removal of Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene from the Treasury on Wednesday night. Nene will be replaced by the relatively unknown David van Rooyen. Watch. WATCH

Cape Town - There has never been a clear line of succession in Cabinet reshuffles, which is why Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas did not get the top job, analysts have said.

They responded after Nhlanhla Nene was booted out of the finance ministry on Wednesday, barely two years after he took over from Pravin Gordhan. Nene was replaced with the relatively unknown ANC MP David Van Rooyen.

Van Rooyen was the former mayor of Merafong Municipality and was currently serving as whip of the Standing Committee on Finance and of the Economic Transformation Cluster in Parliament.

Political analyst Professor Somadoda Fikeni on Thursday said Zuma always used his own discretion in reshuffling ministers.

"We have seen a number of deputy ministers who stay in the posts for a long time without being promoted. In this instance, in the finance sector Nene should have been replaced by Jonas as he has been understudying him, it never really happens.”

Analyst Daniel Silke said that these days there was never an expectation that a deputy minister would replace their minister. 

"Secondly, a deputy minister very often could be seen to be more ideologically in line with their minister, having worked relatively close together. And if the president wants to put in his own stamp on the portfolio, he might want to bring in his own person who is not related to the ministry, but is a safer bet in terms of carrying out policy going forward."

He said for that reason, Jonas might have been overlooked for someone more likely to toe the line.

Read more on:    david van rooyen  |  nhlanhla nene  |  mcebisi jonas  |  economy  |  politics

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