New DG in the presidency

Cassius Lubisi has been appointed the new director-general in the Presidency.

Lubisi was the superintendent-general of the KwaZulu-Natal education department, the Presidency said.

Former director-general Vusi Mavimbela is to be deployed to the international relations department.

“We wish him well in his new deployment and are happy that he is not lost to the public service and to the Presidency as he remains part of the family,” said Minister in the Presidency responsible for administration, Collins Chabane.

President Jacob Zuma’s office this year faced an exodus of senior staff, including spokesperson Vincent Magwenya, operational head Jessie Duarte, economic adviser Mandisi Mpahlwa, director-general of communications Vusi Mona and chief director for presidential support services Steyn Speed.

Announcing three resignations in July the presidency denied that there was a “crisis”, as reported by newspapers.

Mavimbela was reportedly rumoured “not to be trusted by Zuma’s inner circle”. He returned to politics from the private sector last year.

His previous stint in government was as former president Thabo Mbeki’s special adviser on intelligence and security from 1998 to 1999.

He was then appointed National Intelligence Agency director-general but joined the private sector in 2004 after asking to be released from the post.

He had worked for Mvelaphanda Holdings with current Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale before his return to politics.

The Presidency described the incoming DG, Lubisi, as an “accomplished academic, educationist, public service manager and strategist”.

He headed the education department in 2005, he served as a special adviser to former education minister Kader Asmal, was the chairperson of the council for quality assurance in education, Umalusi, and worked as a lecturer and senior lecturer at the University of Natal.

“I am humbled by the trust the president has placed in me, and am overwhelmed by the responsibility I have been given. I will do my best, working with my colleagues, to ensure realisation of the president’s vision of a more effective, efficient and caring public service that meets the country’s transformation goals,” said Lubisi.

As the DG in the presidency, he would also be the secretary of cabinet and the chairperson of the Forum of South African Directors-General.

Zuma, said the Presidency, would rely on Lubisi to ensure that cabinet was a more “effective instrument of socio-economic transformation”.

He would be the “link” between the president and all governmental directors-general.

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