Dukwana reappointed as FS Cogta MEC as Premier Ntombela reshuffles Cabinet

Free State Premier Sisi Ntombela has announced changes to her provincial Cabinet.

FILE: A screengrab of former Free State MEC Mxolisi Dukwana is giving evidence at the state capture inquiry on 5 April 2019.

JOHANNESBURG - As the tide continues turning against the African National Congress (ANC)’s suspended secretary-general Ace Magashule in his home province of the Free State, one of his fiercest critics, Mxolisi Dukwana, has now been appointed the new Cooperative Governance MEC.

This is nine years after Magashule fired Dukwana from that very same portfolio.

Free State Premier Sisi Ntombela, also a one-time Magashule ally, has announced changes to her provincial Cabinet.

These include the appointment of Dukwana as well as the redeployment of Thembeni Ngxagisa to the Agricultural and Rural Development Department and William Bulwane to the Police, Roads and Transport Department.

Dukwana’s return to the Free State legislature signalled that big changes were on the horizon. This was proven on Friday as he returned to provincial government.

Ntombela’s spokesperson, Sello Pieterson, said that this was about improving the ANC government’s offering to citizens.

“The centre of that particular change or reconfiguration was an effort by the premier to ensure and to strengthen the Cabinet so that our people are able to receive much better and much more services from the government.”

Sam Mashinini, one of the remaining Magashule loyalists in the ANC in the province, was shown the door.

He told Eyewitness News on Friday that the party had approached him offering to turn him into a back-bencher in Parliament but that he refused.

Mashinini said he would rather be an ordinary member of the Free State legislature.

To some, these developments are signs of a province shaking off the remaining hold that Magashule, once dubbed lifetime chair, had on both the ANC and the government there.

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