Thapelo Lekabe

By Thapelo Lekabe

Senior Digital Journalist

‘It’s the call of the president’: Ramaphosa will reshuffle Cabinet when he’s ready – ANC

The ANC says Ramaphosa is still applying his mind on changes to his national executive.

As the country waits in suspense for President Cyril Ramaphosa to announce changes to his Cabinet, the African National Congress (ANC) has appealed to the media, and South Africans at large, to give the president space to finalise his engagements.

“When the Cabinet reshuffle has to happen, you will be informed. And I’m sure where you are anxious [and] just waiting every day… that matter will be processed by the president when he is ready.

“Let us all wait for that. It is the prerogative and the call of the president. He will decide on that at the right moment. Hopefully, soon because the deputy president [David Mabuza] has also resigned.

“That puts a little bit of pressure on the process so that the president makes an announcement,” said ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula.

ALSO READ: Cabinet reshuffle: President has tough task ahead

Mbalula made the remarks on Friday, at the ANC’s headquarters in Johannesburg, Luthuli House, during a media briefing on the resolutions of the governing party adopted at its 55th national conference, which took place in December 2022.

Cabinet reshuffle

Ramaphosa is under pressure to announce changes to his national executive following his state of the nation address (Sona) in Parliament last month, in which he announced measures that government would take to tackle the country’s energy crisis and the imminent appointment of an electricity minister.

Since then, Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana delivered his budget speech, new ANC members of parliament were sworn in, and David Mabuza officially resigned this week as the country’s deputy president.

Mbalula said Ramaphosa was aware of the urgency to announce the changes to Cabinet, saying he would “apply his mind and act with speed”.

“We understand the anxiety on all these things [and] the minister of electricity is going to be of interest to the country because we want the lights to be on.”

RELATED: Presidency denies Ramaphosa postponed Cabinet reshuffle due to ill health, says he’s ‘fine’

The ANC secretary-general – whose position as transport minister also needs to be filled – also confirmed that Ramaphosa caught a cold this week.

But he declined to comment on media reports that this affected engagements with ANC national officials and tripartite alliance partners on the Cabinet reshuffle.

“The president, the other day… I think, he did catch some flu and I was there. So, in terms of what happens and how that is linked to the Cabinet reshuffle, I don’t know.

“There are creative people who are working among us who are making up stories,” said Mbalula.

This followed reports on Friday, that Ramaphosa was meant to meet with ANC officials at midday on Thursday, in Tshwane, to finalise his new executive team. However, the meeting was reportedly cancelled at the eleventh hour because the president had a cold.

‘The president is fine’

Responding to written questions from The Citizen, Ramaphosa’s spokesperson, Vincent Magwenya, denied that the president postponed announcing changes to his Cabinet on Thursday because of ill health.

Magwenya said Ramaphosa did have “a minor cold” on Tuesday, but has since recovered.

“There was never any announcement scheduled for Thursday. The president is fine,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mbalula said the ANC would speak to Ramaphosa about their preferences on the ministers to be appointed to Cabinet.

He also confirmed that the president had not consulted with the governing party on his picks for the executive.

“The president will come to us and he will consult the alliance. And then he will make up his mind because it is his prerogative in terms of the Constitution.

“At the present moment, that has not happened. So, we will only deal with that matter when it comes to us.”

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