Fresh from his re-election on Monday as the Eastern Cape ANC chairperson, Oscar Mabuyane has denied claims that there will be a shake-up of the provincial Cabinet.
But the Eastern Cape premier confirmed that he would conduct a reassessment of the Cabinet as part of a mid-term performance review process.
He said this was “an open secret”.
“There will be no [Cabinet] reshuffle but there will be a performance review. It’s going to happen [because] we are in the mid-term. It’s an open secret,” Mabuyane said.
He was speaking at a media briefing in East London on Monday afternoon following the announcement of the top five ANC leadership posts in the Eastern Cape.
Mabuyane emerged victorious at the ANC Eastern Cape ninth provincial elective conference, with his faction winning a clean sweep of the leadership contest.
He beat his rival, current public works MEC Babalo Madikizela, by 812 votes.
Madikizela received 662 votes from the 1,497 delegates who voted at the conference held at the East London International Convention Centre.
‘There’s no purging’
The other provincial leaders elected to the top five included Mlungisi Mvoko as the deputy chairperson and Lulama Ngcukiatobi as provincial secretary.
Helen Sauls-August was elected the deputy provincial secretary and Zolile Williams the provincial treasurer.
Mabuyane said they heard rumours about his contenders being removed from the provincial Cabinet. But he assured the media that there would be “no purging” of his opponents.
“There’s no purging. We’ve heard about these stories, but I don’t know the reason [for them],” he said.
Call for unity and renewal
Meanwhile, Mabuyane called for unity and the renewal of the ANC, saying this would be the priority of the newly elected provincial leadership.
“We will continue with that unswerving commitment to the renewal of the ANC and we will lead where necessary as a province.
“This is the time we are working so hard to make sure that the ANC exists for another 100 years and even beyond,” he said.
Mabuyane’s victory comes after a tense elective conference that was characterised by legal action, a heavy security presence, several disruptions and disputes over the adoption of credentials.
The conference outcomes are expected to determine whether President Cyril Ramaphosa has a good chance of winning a second term in December at the five-year ANC national electoral conference.
It is reported that Mabuyane has thrown his weight behind Ramaphosa’s bid for a second term, while Madikizela has been associated with the group that supports former ANC treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize.
Ramaphosa is expected to close the Eastern Cape provincial conference at about 4pm later on Monday.
Compiled by Thapelo Lekabe