The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) has taken note of the announcements by President Ramaphosa, on the changes to the National Executive.
Despite there being vacant ministerial posts, we wonder if this is not a knee-jerk reaction from the President, due to the issues around – and subsequent resignation of – the Health Minister, as well as the blatant incompetence of the Security Cluster, as was obvious from the lack of intelligence provided and their inability to prevent the recent unrest.
We also wonder if the unexpected resignation of the Finance Minister, Tito Mboweni, was not due to pressure from the Trade Unions. The new Finance Minister is very much an ANC cadre appointment and despite being a former Deputy Minister, he has not done much to recommend himself for this critical portfolio.
With the country on its knees, we need new talent, not just a shuffling of the deck, with Ministers in a never-ending game of musical chairs. Further, although we welcomed the reconfigured Cabinet in 2019, it was not enough to streamline and re-energise the Executive.
It is essential that competent people be appointed if we want to rebuild our country and grow our ailing economy.
All Ministers – not just those appointed in new posts today – need to be held accountable. Regular performance assessments need to be conducted, with the President providing feedback every six months on their progress. Those not performing and delivering upon their mandates need to be replaced.
The role of Deputy Ministers must also be assessed and possibly done away with – particularly in the smaller Ministries, such as the Ministry for Women, Youth and Persons in the Presidency. Such smaller Ministries could easily be absorbed others, in this case, by Social Development. We cannot have lame ducks in the water – particularly when Departments are having to cut budgets and delay essential projects due to the devastation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as the recent unrest.
As the IFP, we wish all the new appointments well, but will be watching them closely, and holding them accountable in Parliament. When they falter, we will be there to ask them the difficult questions and hold them accountable for their actions – or lack of action.
Hon. Narend Singh, MP
Acting National Spokesperson & Chief Whip in Parliament
083 788 5954
Hon. Velenkosini Hlabisa, MPL
IFP President & Leader of the Official Opposition in the KZN Legislature
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