DA slams Mokonyane’s reshuffle

The DA says merit was not the deciding factor in Gauteng’s executive council reshuffle.

Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane. Picture: GCIS

JOHANNESBURG - The Democratic Alliance (DA) has welcomed the appointment of Hope Papo as Gauteng's new MEC for Health, but said it would be difficult for him to fix the troubled department.

The former Department of Finance committee member was sworn in on Monday, together with Nkosiphendule Kholisile - who was appointed new MEC for Economic Development.

Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane's executive council reshuffle followed Humphrey Mmemezi's resignation as MEC for Local Government and Housing - after a financial scandal.

Mmemezi admitted to using his official credit card to buy a R10, 000 painting and misusing state funds.

DA spokesperson Jack Bloom questioned the former MEC for Health's appointment to the housing department.

"Ntombi Mekgwe has not proved herself at the Department of Health and now she's being moved to the Department of Local Government and Housing?"

He said Papo had a proven track record.

"He's scrupulous and honest - I have a great deal of respect for him."

Bloom also slammed the appointment of Kholisile as the MEC for Economic Development .

"I'm very concerned that a very junior person has replaced Qedani Mahlangu".

Kholisile was elected to the Legislature in 2009.

Mahlangu will take over the Infrastructure Development portfolio.

Bloom said Mokonyane's reshuffle was influenced by ANC politics.

"It is plain that merit was not the deciding factor in this reshuffle, which largely reflects the Gauteng ANC's internal balance of factions."