Government


South Africa's new Cabinet ministers

2 November 2010

Six new Cabinet ministers and 12 new deputy ministers have been sworn in by Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo following a major Cabinet reshuffle by President Jacob Zuma.

New Cabinet ministers Bathabile Dlamini (social development), Malusi Gigaba (public enterprises), Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde (public works), Mildred Oliphant (Labour) and Fikile Mbalula (sport and recreation) took their oath at the Presidential Guest House in Pretoria on Monday.

Notably absent was incoming Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile, who still needs to be sworn in as a Member of Parliament. Others, such as new Communications Minister Radhakrishna "Roy" Padayachie, were not sworn in as they were changing from one department to another and had already been sworn in as part of their previous portfolios.

The 17 deputy ministers appointed as part of Zuma's reshuffle were also sworn in.

Here are quick profiles of some of the new faces in Zuma's Cabinet:

Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba

Malusi Gigaba, who has served as deputy home affairs minister since May 2009, takes over from Barbara Hogan as minister of public enterprises.

The 39-year-old Gigaba served previously in parliament's portfolio committees on trade and industry and agriculture and land affairs, and on the government's joint monitoring committee on the quality of life and status of children, youth and disabled persons.

One of Gigaba's department's most pressing tasks is that of helping power utility Eskom with a multi-billion rand expansion programme to ensure that South Africa's energy needs are met.

At the reopening of the Camden power station in Mpumalanga last month, President Zuma said the government would spend over R800-billion on energy infrastructure in the coming years, while Finance Minister Pravin Gorhan last week announced a further R174-billion state guarantee to enable Eskom to complete construction of two new power stations.

Communications Minister 'Roy' Padayachie

Radhakrishna "Roy" Padayachie takes over from Siphiwe Nyanda as minister of communications.

Padayachie is well known in the sector, having served as deputy communications minister from 2004 until May 2009, when he took up the position of deputy minister of public service and administration.

The microbiologist, who holds a Bachelor of Science degree and a Masters in Science from the University of London, takes over a ministry responsible for some state-owned enterprises, including the SABC, which has been plagued by problems.

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini

After serving for 17 months as deputy minister of social development, Bathabile Dlamini takes over as minister from Edna Molewa, who has been moved to the department of water and environmental affairs.

Among Dlamini's duties will be ensuring that her department achieves its primary functions, including managing social security. This will include social assistance and unemployment, disability and old age grants.

The Department of Social Development is also tasked with developing sustainable social welfare services help to reduce poverty, vulnerability and the impact of HIV/Aids, in partnership with various state-funded institutions and non-governmental, community- and faith-based organisations.

Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa

Edna Molewa, previously minister of social development, replaces Buyelwa Sonjica as minister of water and environmental affairs.

Molewa was appointed minister of social development in May 2009 after serving as premier of North West province from 2004 and 2009. She was credited with turning the province around.

A former teacher, Molewa began her political activism serving in the underground structures of African National Congress (ANC) between 1976 and 1990. She currently chairs the ANC Women's League in North West.

Key imperatives for Molewa will be to coordinate and monitor the provision of basic services such as water, electricity, refuse removal and sanitation. Just last week, the Cabinet approved a national policy for provision of basic refuse removal services for indigent households.

Tackling the issue of acid mine drainage and pollution of water resources in Gauteng province could also be one of Molewa's immediate priorities.

Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile

After serving for 17 months as deputy minister of arts and culture, Paul Mashatile takes over as minister from Lulu Xingana, who has been named minister of women, children and persons with disabilities.

Mashatile was previously the premier of Gauteng province, as well as provincial MEC for housing, transport and public works, as well as Safety.

An active member in the underground structures of the African National Congress (ANC) and South African Communist Party (SACP) during South Africa's apartheid years, Mashatile was held for almost four years without trial, during which time he embarked on an 18-day hunger strike as part of a nationwide protest.

Sport and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula

Fikile Mbalula, who served as deputy minister of police since May 2009, takes over from Makhenkesi Stofile as minister of sport and recreation.

The appointment of the former leader of the African National Congress Youth League was welcomed by Gideon Sam, president of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee.

"The 2012 Olympics in London gets ever closer, and Minister Mbalula will be a key part of our drive for success in this regard," Sam said following Mbalula's appointment.

Deputy Health Minister Gwen Ramokgopa

Gwen Ramokgopa, previously mayor of the City of Tshwane, takes over as deputy health minister from Molefi Sefularo, who died in a car accident earlier this year.

In 1995, Ramokgopa became the first black woman to chair the executive committee of the then City Council of Pretoria. In 1998 she was appointed chairperson of the Gauteng legislature's portfolio committee for health. She went on to serve as Gauteng MEC for Health from 1999 to 2006, when she became Tshwane mayor.

Ramakgopa qualified as a medical doctor in 1989, and was awarded a Masters degree in public health in 2007.

Deputy Police Minister Makhotso Magdalene Sotyu

Makhotso Magdalene Sotyu takes over as deputy police minister from Fikile Mbalula, who has been appointed minister of sports and recreation.

Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa has welcomed Sotyu's appointment, saying he was confident that her political career, which included involvement in parliamentary portfolio committees on water and environment as well as the police, would "stand her in good stead in her new role".

"In Deputy Minister Sotyu, we have acquired a stalwart and a hard worker who, just like her predecessor, hates crime with a passion," Mthethwa said following Sotyu's appointment.

Dina Pule: deputy minister in the presidency for performance monitoring and evaluation

Dina Pule has been appointed to a new deputy minister's position in the office of Collins Chabane, the minister in the presidency responsible for performance monitoring, evaluation and administration.

The ministry has an expansive mandate which includes guiding and monitoring the work of the government, across all sectors, for the next five years.

Pule, previously deputy minister of communications, has a no-nonsense reputation and is intolerant of mismanagement.

She made a name for herself in the Mpumalanga provincial legislature, where she held several executive council appointments, including that of safety and security and agriculture.

Other changes to Zuma's Cabinet

  • Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde replaces Geoff Doidge as minister of public works.
  • Lulu Xingwana replaces Noluthando Mayende-Sibiya as minister of women, children and persons with disabilities.
  • Mildred Oliphant replaces Membathisi Mdladlana as minister of labour.

Other deputy ministers appointed were:

  • Communications Obed Bapela
  • Social development Maria Ntuli
  • Public works Benedict "Ben" Martins
  • Arts and culture Joseph Phaahla
  • Correctional services Ngoako Ramathlodi
  • Trade and industry Elizabeth Thabethe
  • Economic Development Enoch Godongwana
  • Energy Barbara Thompson
  • Higher education Hlengiwe Mkhize
  • Home affairs Fatima Chohan
  • Mineral resources Godfrey Oliphant
  • International relations and cooperation Marius Fransman
  • Public service and administration Ayanda Dlodlo
  • Rural development and land reform Thembelani Thulas Nxesi

Source: BuaNews

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