EC premier's future hangs in balance as party plans to meet on Monday

16 February 2018 - 17:06 By Siphe Macanda
Eastern Cape Premier Phumulo Masualle. File photo
Eastern Cape Premier Phumulo Masualle. File photo
Image: Eugene Coetzee

The future of Eastern Cape Premier Phumulo Masualle hangs in the balance as the party in the province gears up to reshuffle the provincial cabinet.

Next Monday‚ the party’s provincial executive committee (PEC) will meet - and it is expected that Masualle's future will feature prominently in the discussions.

A PEC member told TimesLIVE that PEC members were anxious about the matter and the meeting would indicate how the province’s Number 1 would exit.

“Hopefully we will finalise this thing on Monday. We are also glad that it seems like even the national officials‚ which are the final arbiters and have the deciding vote‚ have considered the matter and are on our side‚” the PEC member said.

Provincial secretary Lulama Ngcukaitobi confirmed the meeting‚ but when asked about the discussions on Masualle‚ he was mum‚ saying “it is not the intention” to discuss his future.

It is touted that Masualle will be replaced by former premier and current speaker of the provincial legislature Noxolo Kiviet.

Kiviet served as the province’s premier from 2009 to 2014. Masualle took over from her and will finish his term next year. Masualle contested the much-publicised Eastern Cape elective congress late last year‚ but lost to his then provincial secretary Oscar Mabuyane.

The conference’s outcomes were challenged after violence broke out between the two factions‚ injuring many.

A task team led by Sbu Radebe was sent to the province to investigate what led to the fight. However, speaking to the Sunday Times last week‚ Radebe said the final report on their probe would not have any bearing on the outcomes of the conference.

“Ours is to say that there shouldn’t have been that kind of violence in an ANC conference; ours is to say what happened in the Eastern Cape and what led to that violence. How can the ANC organise itself that those scenes never happen again?” Ndebele said.

He said the probe was instituted to establish the dos and don’ts and the precautions that the ANC needed to take.

Ndebele also said the Eastern Cape incident was not an isolated phenomenon and had to be used as a case study for the party to avoid repetition.