FINANCE Minister Pravin Gordhan and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas have been removed from their portfolio as President Jacob Zuma wielded his axe on Thursday night.
Gordhan was replaced by Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba and Jonas replaced by ANC MP Sifiso Buthelezi.
Their removal comes as no surprise following their recent recall from an international investor trip in London.
They were not the only ministers to be shown the door as Zuma re-asserted his authority and sent out a clear message he was still in charge amid a rebellion by alliance partners the SACP, as well as threats of impeachment by opposition parties.
At least nine ministers and six deputies were either axed or shifted from their positions.
Five were shown the door.
Gordhan has been facing the barrel of the gun since his return as finance minister against Zuma’s wishes following the weekend appointment of Des Van Rooyen in December 2015.
Since then he has been in a fierce fight with Zuma’s friends the Gupta family.
He was also targeted by the National Prosecuting Authority but charges against him were later withdrawn. Gordhan’s court battle with the Gupta family is still on going in the Pretoria High Court.
“I have decided to make changes to the National Executive in order to improve efficiency and effectiveness. The changes bring some younger MPs and women into the National Executive in order to benefit from their energy, experience and expertise,” said Zuma.
The president said he has directed the new Ministers and Deputy Ministers to work tirelessly with their colleagues to bring about “radical socio-economic transformation” and to ensure that the promise of a better life for the poor and the working class becomes a reality.
The announcement was preceded by a marathon meeting between Zuma and other members of the ANC top six.
It was followed by another between the president and the fifteen affected ministers and deputy ministers where they were officially informed about the reshuffle.
The new Ministers are:
- Minister of Energy, Ms Mmamoloko “Nkhensani” Kubayi
- Minister of Transport, Mr Joe Maswanganyi
- Minister of Finance, Mr Malusi Gigaba
- Minister of Police, Mr Fikile Mbalula
- Minister of Public Works, Mr Nathi Nhleko,
- Minister of Sports and Recreation, Mr Thembelani Nxesi
- Minister of Tourism, Ms Tokozile Xasa
- Minister of Public Service and Administration, Ms Faith Muthambi
- Minister of Home Affairs, Prof Hlengiwe Mkhize
- Minister of Communications, Ms Ayanda Dlodlo
- Deputy Minister of Public Service and Administration, Ms Dipuo Letsatsi-Duba
- Deputy Minister of Finance, Mr Sifiso Buthelezi
- Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises, Mr Ben Martins
- Deputy Minister of Arts and Culture, Ms Maggie Sotyu
- Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Gratitude Magwanishe
- Deputy Minister of Communications, Ms Thandi Mahambehlala,
- Deputy Minister of Tourism, Ms Elizabeth Thabethe
- Deputy Minister of Police, Mr Bongani Mkongi
- Deputy Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Ms Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams
- Deputy Minister of Small Business Development, Ms Nomathemba November.