Cabinet reshuffle - statement by the UDM President (01 November 2010)

The UDM takes note of the cabinet reshuffle announced by President Zuma yesterday. We do not think that it gives much cause for celebration. There is no basis for an argument that this is intended to address service delivery. President Zuma knows very well his Government only gave the Ministers their first full departmental budgets at the beginning of this year, whilst the Public Service Commission still has to approve the staffing and organisation for the newly-established Departments. Therefore, the only realistic analysis of the reshuffle is that it is intended to address ANC internal politics.

It is also disingenuous to claim that these changes are intended to address service delivery. The major service delivery departments continue with the same Ministers, even though they are the cause of greatest concern and frustration to most South Africans. In Education, Local Government and Housing there is serious need for decisive political leadership. For instance, in Housing chaos reigns; there is widespread illegal reselling of RDP houses, whilst the Minister has been demolishing houses claiming they’d be replaced.

There is no realistic hope of turning around the civil service and improving service delivery as long as the ANC persists with its culture of Ministers usurping the role and duties of the Directors General as accounting officers.