President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced his new cabinet, along with significant changes to how it is structured – including cutting down the number of ministries from 36 to 28.
Before the restructuring, South Africa’s cabinet comprised 72 people, including the president, his deputy, ministers and deputy ministers – an outlier among countries of the same size and economy.
The new cabinet will now be made up of 64 members – including Ramaphosa, Mabuza, 28 ministers and 34 deputies.
The size of South Africa’s cabinet has ballooned over the years, from 50 members under former president Thabo Mbeki, to 72 members under Jacob Zuma.
In his address, Ramaphosa stressed that this was the start of a journey to the ideal “blueprint” cabinet, which will take time to implement in the coming years.
Several departments with similar mandates have been bundled into one. The departments that have been combined include:
- The department of trade industry and department of economic development;
- The department of higher education and the department of science and technology;
- The department of environmental affairs and the department of forestry and fisheries;
- The department of agriculture and the department of rural development and land reform;
- The department of mineral resources and the department of energy;
- The department human settlements and department of water and sanitation;
- The department of sports and the department of arts and culture.
Old vs new cabinet
When Cyril Ramaphosa was first elected as president of the country on 15 February 2018, he quickly announced a cabinet reshuffle on 26 February in which many ministers from the Zuma administration were removed from their posts.
However, due to the internal politics of the ANC – which was deeply divided over the election of its president – many controversial figures seen to be loyal to the previous president were retained.
A second cabinet reshuffle came in November 2018, following the death of minister Edna Molewa and the resignation of Malusi Gigaba.
With the new cabinet, several notable names are now absent – including Nomvula Mokonyane and Bathabile Dlamini, whose inclusion in the ANC’s parliamentary lists drew criticism due to accusations of corruption and maladministration levelled against them.
The table below outlines how the previous cabinet has changed, including the bundling of old ministries.
|Deputy President||David Mabuza||–|
|Minister in the Presidency||Jackson Mthembu||Thembi Siweya|
|Minister in the Presidency: Women and Youth||Maite Nkoana-Mashabane||Hlengiwe Mkhize|
|Agriculture, Rural Development and Land Reform||Thoko Didiza||Sdumo Dlamini
|Basic Education||Angie Motshekga||Regina Mhaule|
|Communication and Telecommunications||Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams||Pinky Kekan|
|Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs||Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma||Parks Tau
|Defence and Military Veterans||Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula||Thabang Makwetla|
|Employment and Labour||Thulas Nxesi||Boitumelo Moloi|
|Finance||Tito Mboweni||David Masondo|
|Forestry and Fisheries and Environmental Affairs||Barbara Creecy||Maggie Sotyu|
|Health||Zwelini Mkhize||Joe Phaahla|
|Higher Education, Science and Technology||Blade Nzimande||Buti Manamela|
|Home Affairs||Aaron Motsoaledi||Njabulo Nzuza|
|Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation||Lindiwe Sisulu||Pam Tshwete
|International Relations and Cooperation||Naledi Pandor||Alvin Botes
|Justice and Correctional Services||Ronald Lamola||John Jeffery
Inkosi Phathekile Holomisa
|Mineral Resources and Energy||Gwede Mantashe||Bavelile Hlongwa|
|Police||Bheki Cele||Cassel Mathale|
|Public Enterprises||Pravin Gordhan||Phumulo Masualle|
|Public Service and Administration||Senzo Mchunu||Sindy Chikunga|
|Public Works||Patricia de Lille||Noxolo Kiviet|
|Small Business Development||Khumbudzo Ntshavheni||Rosemary Capa|
|Social Development||Lindiwe Zulu||Henrietta Bogopane-Zulu|
|Sports and Recreation, Arts and Culture||Nathi Mthethw||Nocawe Mafu|
|State Security||Ayanda Dlodlo||Zizi Kodwa|
|Tourism||Nkhensani Kubayi-Ngubane||Fish Mahlalela|
|Trade and Industry and Economic Development||Ebrahim Patel||Fikile Majola
|Transport||Fikile Mbalula||Dikeledi Magadzi|