CAPE TOWN – Opposition parties have described President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet as the same choir singing a different tune.
The president announced a slimmed down Cabinet on Wednesday night, reducing the number of ministries from 36 to 28.
His Cabinet includes some new blood like Ronald Lamola in the Justice and Corrections and the surprise appointment of the night of Good Party leader Patricia de Lille to head up a reconfigured Public Works and Infrastructure ministry.
The two main opposition parties in the National Assembly were less than impressed with the President’s new Cabinet.
Democratic Alliance (DA) Leader Mmusi Maimane said that there was very little to inspire in the line-up.
“This is a Cabinet that looks the same actors playing to the same script, they’ve just been reshuffled along the deck and our focus now is to refine our plan, a plan that will bring us jobs.”
The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) took a harder line, rejecting the entire Cabinet out of hand, calling Ramaphosa dishonest and manipulative and slamming the reappointment of Pravin Gordhan as Public Enterprises Minister despite the Public Protector’s ruling against him.
The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP)’s response was lukewarm. Member of Parliament and spokesperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa said that the only real surprise inclusion in the new Cabinet was the inclusion of De Lille.
“It’s safe to say the only surprise is Patricia de Lille, for the president to get an opposition member into the Cabinet.”
For its part, the ruling party has welcomed the new Cabinet and the African National Congress Women’s League had high praise for the gender representatives, with half the members being women.