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Violet Siwela, rapid rise to the top.

Premier gives four MECs the boot

Mpumalanga premier, David Mabuza on Wednesday axed two more members of the executive council (MECs), bringing to four the number of MECs who lost their jobs within a week.

Mabuza axed the MEC for agriculture, rural development, land and environmental affairs, Andries Gamede and MEC for human settlements, Violet Siwela.

The premier’s latest move comes barely a week after the ruling African National Congress (ANC) announced the removal of two MECs during a media briefing last week.

Mabuza said that community safety, security and liaison MEC, Vusi Shongwe would replace Gamede, while member of the provincial legislature (MPL), Speed Mashilo, replaces Siwela as MEC for human settlements.

Former ANC Youth league (ANCYL) provincial secretary, Sasekani Manzini, replaced Dumisile Nhlengethwa as MEC for public works, roads and transport, while newly sworn in MPL and former executive mayor of Albert Luthuli local municipality, Busi Shiba, replaced axed MEC for social development, Nomsa Mtshweni.

Mabuza also appointed MPL Pat Ngomana as the MEC for community safety, security and liaison.

Mabuza did not give reasons for the changes except to say that the ruling party had performed an assessment which necessitated the changes.

“It was not a once off exercise it was a process that took almost six months in and out of meetings assessing our work, and finally we have come to the conclusion that we must reconfigure ourselves to respond to the situation,” he said.

He warned the newly appointed MECs that they would not rest.

“We congratulate those who are coming in. It’s not a nice job, I can tell you. You will sleep less, less and less.

ANCYL provincial chairperson Tim Mashele welcomed the changes.

“We are happy that some of the people included are from the ranks of the ANCYL,” he said.

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