The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has called for more heads in Cabinet to roll following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement on Tuesday of his acceptance of Nhlanhla Nene’s resignation as finance minister.
The party, which has been vocal in its demand for Nene’s sacking over the past few days, now wants Ramaphosa to fire Minister in the Presidency Bathabile Dlamini and Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba.
Last month, the Constitutional Court referred Dlamini to prosecutors after finding she had lied under oath about her role in the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) debacle. The court further ordered her to pay 20% of the legal costs for the Black Sash and Freedom under law — the two non-governmental organisations that took her to court after Sassa said last year that it would be unble to pay social grants from April 2017.
Gigaba was also found to have lied under oath earlier this year when he was accused of reneging on a deal with the Oppenheimer family to allow them to build a private terminal at OR Tambo International airport. Gigaba falsely claimed under oath that he had not authorised the project during his first stint as home affairs minister.
“These ministers have demonstrated the same disregard of ethical conduct shown by Nene and, like Nene, they have undermined parliament’ s accountability mechanisms,” the EFF said in a statement.
“Their continued stay in cabinet sends a message that Ramaphosa is inconsistent and fails go put the interests of South Africans above those of the ANC’s big shots.”
The party said it “noted” Tito Mboweni’s appointment as finance minister and called on him to prioritise the needs of South Africans, especially the poor.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has welcomed Mboweni’s appointment, saying it hoped he would “have the advantage of being able to hit the ground running.”
“[He] is, at least, known to market participants, ratings agencies and international financial institutions, who closely follow events in South Africa,” the DA’s Shadow Minister of Finance David Maynier said in a statement.
But the DA also described Mboweni’s public comments while out of government office as “looney”.
— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) October 9, 2018
“We are concerned that during the years that he was out in the political cold, he often came over on social media, at least, as a little looney posting content that seemed to be at odds with government policy,” Maynier said, with an attached picture of Mboweni advocating for 40% ownership of mining companies by the state. Mboweni’s tweet was posted in April this year.