The ANC will on Thursday announce veteran civil servant and head of the national school of government Job Mokgoro as the new North West Premier after the party’s national working committee (NWC) endorsed him on Wednesday night.
Mokgoro’s name was included in the new list of names submitted to the ANC national executive committee (NEC) by the the party’s provincial executive committee (PEC) as suitable candidates to replace Supra Mahumapelo as premier.
An earlier list was rejected by the party’s top six officials with instructions to the PEC to first consult ANC alliance partners before submitting names.
Mahumapelo was forced to resign as Premier in May amid violent protests prompted by rampant corruption and poor service delivery in the North West province. The NWC’s decision to endorse Mokgoro may face resistance from some within the ANC, including the party’s alliance partners who preferred South Africa’s United Nations ambassador Jerry Matjila and ANC stalwart Zakes Tolo among others to take over as the new premier.
Matjila declined the nomination, according to ANC insiders who spoke to the Mail & Guardian this week.
“The CR (Cyril Ramaphosa) team was divided between Zakes and Job hence Job. Zakes is old and there was fear that Supra’s team may frustrate and delay his inclusion into the list before Friday. We have to appoint a Premier before Friday. If there is no Premier by Friday, the Speaker of Northwest would have to dissolve the legislature and Northwest would have to go to an election,” said the NEC member.
For Mokgoro to be sworn in as premier on Friday, he will need one of the ANC MPLs to resign to make way for him as he is currently not a member of the provincial legislature.
By the time of publishing, it was not clear who amongst the ANC MPLs was prepared to step down to make way for Mokgoro.
“Remember, Supra [Mahumapelo] changed the ANC list [MPLs within North West legislature] a couple of weeks ago. For [Mokgoro] to be on the list, someone must resign and put [him] in that space.
“The assumption is that they [ANC MPLs] will voluntarily give space for [Mokgoro] without struggle. These are difficult choices. The new Premier is a caretaker until the elections and Northwest is under Section 100 in any event. I also favoured this option or someone in the legislature,” said the NEC member.