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Zuma should reshuffle himself: Active Citizens Movement

19 October 2017 - 10:52 By Bongani Mthethwa
President Jacob Zuma.
President Jacob Zuma.
Image: Thuli Dlamini

A Durban-based social cohesion forum - the Active Citizens Movement (ACM) - has accused President Jacob Zuma of acting with “impunity” and taking the country on a “dangerous path of instability".

The ACM was reacting to Zuma’s recent cabinet reshuffle‚ which it has described as the president’s attempt to serve his personal interests to enrich himself‚ his family and friends. In a statement‚ the forum expressed concern at the cabinet reshuffle which happened without Zuma consulting the other ANC top six leaders.

“The ACM believes that this reshuffle is part of an agenda by the president to realign cabinet to address his personal interests regarding the nuclear deal and the structure of the SABC Board - none of which serves to benefit the majority of ordinary citizens‚ but will enrich the president‚ his family and friends‚” it said.

The ACM said Zuma’s axing of SACP secretary general and Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande was because of his position on state capture and corruption in government and Nzimande’s calls for Zuma to step down.

“This is viewed as an obvious attempt to silence his critics within the alliance. The reshuffle indicates very little strategy or attempt to improve government administration as poorly performing ministers have been retained.‚” the forum said.

“There is also concern that the nuclear deal is being promoted as evidenced by the move of State Security Minister David Mahlobo - a Zuma loyalist - to Minister of Energy. A pattern is clearly emerging that all ministers who opposed the nuclear deal‚ namely Ministers Gordhan and Nene and Deputy Minister Mcebisi Jonas‚ have been removed from their posts.”

The forum‚ which also fights for poverty alleviation and against inequality‚ said the instability in the economy which may result from the reshuffle has direct implications for South African citizens‚ especially the poor.

“The president is acting with impunity and is taking the country on a dangerous path of instability. The ACM urges communities to take a stance against such irresponsible decision-making by the State President and calls for President Jacob Zuma to reshuffle himself out of the Presidency.”

“It is fervently hoped that such unfettered powers of the Presidency will be reviewed and curtailed under a new dispensation even if this requires an amendment to our Constitution.”