Home South African ANC hits back at DA’s ‘outrageous and outlandish’ demands

ANC hits back at DA’s ‘outrageous and outlandish’ demands

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Following the DA’s attempts to secure 12 Cabinet posts, including that of the deputy president in the government of national unity, the ANC says President Cyril Ramaphosa has the final word on the appointment of the Cabinet.

Helen Zille, the chairperson of the DA’s federal council. File picture: Tracey Adams, African News Agency (ANA)

FOLLOWING the DA’s attempts to get 12 Cabinet posts, including that of the deputy president (DP) in the government of national unity (GNU), the ANC says President Cyril Ramaphosa has the final word on the appointment of the Cabinet.

On Sunday, the DA federal chairperson, Helen Zille, wrote a letter to ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula, informing him that her party wanted around 12 ministerial positions in the GNU.

It also included the DA approving the appointments of director-generals for all departments under its control – in what many on social media said was akin to “cadre deployment”.

“That director-generals in departments reporting to Democratic Alliance ministers are selected by panels consisting of Democratic Alliance ministers, and submitted to the president for his approval, and that such approval cannot reasonably be withheld,” Zille’s letter reads.

The DA preferred the following portfolios:

– Economic Sectors, Investment, Employment and Infrastructure Development.

– Social Protection, Community and Human Development.

– Governance, State Capacity and Institutional Development.

– Justice, Crime Prevention and Security.

– International Cooperation, Trade and Security.

The DA said it can only agree to give up the DP position if it is replaced with both the Minister in the Presidency and the Deputy Minister of Finance posts.

The DA wanted a DP who is also designated as the Leader of Government Business and participates fully in the policy development and monitoring responsibilities of the Presidency, and a Deputy Minister of Finance who participates fully in the development of the budget.

The DA’s Richard Newton confirmed the authenticity of the letter and said that some of the demands had already been ironed out between the parties.

He could not say which demands had been “ironed out”.

Responding to the DA’s demands, the ANC called it “outlandish and outrageous”, stating that no single party can hold the GNU to ransom.

This is after the DA’s demands were leaked to the media and also on social media.

“Negotiating through leaking demands to the media is an act of bad faith and this practice will not help the cause of any party. It is only the president who has the final say on the appointment of his Cabinet. The GNU cannot be held to ransom by any single party,” the ANC said.

While the delays continued to plague the announcement of the Cabinet, the ANC maintained that the people needed a government to be established sooner, rather than later.

In a statement, the ANC confirmed that phase two of the establishment of the GNU was under way with the anticipated announcement of Cabinet positions by Ramaphosa drawing close.

Ramaphosa was inaugurated as president last week at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

The ANC – in power for the past 30 years – resorted to the GNU after losing its more than 50% majority in Parliament after managing just 40% of the national vote in the 2024 elections.

So far, 10 parties have joined the GNU including the ANC, DA, IFP, PA, FF+, UDM, RISE Mzansi, Al Jamah, PAC, and GOOD.

All these parties together represent a majority of over 70% (287) of the 400 seats in the National Assembly. But with more smaller parties joining the GNU the possibility of doing a deal without the DA had become the centre of much chatter on social media.

The ANC said it was committed and open to working with all the parties.

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