This is South Africa’s new minister of electricity – as Ramaphosa announces another surprise new ministry

 ·6 Mar 2023

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced changes to his executive – including two new ministries.

During a twice-delayed address to the nation on Monday (6 March), the president revealed that Kgosientsho Ramokgopa would be appointed as the country’s new minister of electricity.

He also revealed that Maropene Ramokgopa would be appointed as minister for planning, monitoring and evaluation – another new ministry in the presidency.

The president said that he realises that a second new minister is adding to the number of executives in his cabinet, but said that ministries would be reduced in the future.

Kgosientsho Ramokgopa was heavily rumoured to be the president’s favoured candidate for the minister of electricity.

Ramokgopa was the Head of the Investment and Infrastructure Office in the Presidency, entering the position in 2019.

He was also the Executive Mayor of Tshwane from 2010 to 2016.

Moreover, he was the CEO of both

In terms of academic qualifications, he has a PhD in Public Affairs, master’s degrees in business leadership and public administration and a civil engineering degree.

The minister’s role is to significantly reduce the frequency of load shedding as a matter of urgency and also oversee the overall response. He will have authority over the Energy Action plan, and will be given certain powers by the president to do so.

The minister will remain in office until the crisis is dealt with. Ramaphosa described it as a “transitory” ministry.

The primary task of the new Minister will be to significantly reduce the severity and frequency of load shedding as a matter of urgency.

To effectively oversee the electricity crisis response, the appointed Minister will have political responsibility, authority and control over all critical aspects of the Energy Action Plan.

This will help to deal with the challenge of fragmentation of responsibility across various departments and Ministers which, while appropriate under normal circumstances, is not conducive to a crisis response.

The Minister will be expected to facilitate the coordination of the numerous departments and entities involved in the crisis response, work with the Eskom leadership to turn around the performance of existing power stations, and accelerate the procurement of new generation capacity.

To enable the Minister to do this work, I will, in terms of section 97 of the Constitution, transfer to them certain powers and functions contained in relevant legislation.

Other big changes

Paul Mashatile has also been sworn in as the new Deputy President of South Africa, replacing David Mabuza who officially resigned as an MP last week.

Mashatile was elected as the ANC’s Deputy President during the party’s 55th elective conference in December last year, beating Ramaphosa’s favoured deputy, Oscar Mabuyane, 2,178 votes to 1,858.

Sindisiwe Chikunga is the new Minister of Transport after Fikile Mbalula was elected to the ANC’s Secretary General position – a full-time role at Luthuli house. Chikunga was previously deputy minister in the portfolio.

In addition, Noxolo Kiviet is the new Minister of Public Service and Administration.

Last year, Former Minister Ayanda Dlodlo was appointed as an Executive Director on the board of the World Bank in the United States, with Minister of Employment and Labour Thulas Nxesi taking over on an interim basis. Kiviet was also previously deputy minister in the portfolio.

Other changes include:

  • Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs: Thembi Nkadimeng replaces Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
  • Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure: Sihle Zikalala replaces Patricia de Lille
  • Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture: Zizi Kodwa replaces Nathi Mthethwa
  • Minister of Tourism: Patricia de Lille replaces Lindiwe Sisulu
  • Minister of Women, Youth and Persons With Disabilities: Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma replaces Maite Nkoana-Mashabane
  • Minister in the Presidency: Khumbudzo Ntshavheni replaces Mondli Gungubele
  • Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies: Mondli Gungubele replaces Khumbudzo Ntshavheni

Aside from the ministers being moved around, new appointments and promotions, only three ministers lost their positions in the cabinet (who didn’t resign): Nathi Mthethwa, Lindiwe Sisulu and Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.

The president also made changes to deputy ministers. These are as follows:

  • Deputy Ministers in the Presidency: Nomasonto Motaung and Kenneth Morolong
  • Deputy Minister in the Presidency responsible for Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities: Sisisi Tolashe
  • Deputy Minister in the Presidency responsible for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation: Pinky Kekana
  • Two Deputy Ministers for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs: Parks Tau and Zolile Burns-Ncamashe
  • Two Deputy Ministers for Water and Sanitation: David Mahlobo and Judith Tshabalala
  • Deputy Minister of Public Works: Bernice Swarts
  • Deputy Minister of Small Business Development: Dipuo Peters
  • Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises: Obed Bapela
  • Deputy Minister of Transport: Lisa Mangcu

The table below outlines the new executive (ministers only):

Position Minister Shuffled Out
Deputy President Paul Mashatile David Mabuza (resigned)
Minister of Electricity Kgosientsho Ramokgopa New Department
Minister for planning, monitoring and evaluation Maropene Ramakgopa New Department
Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni Mondli Gungubele
Minister of Women, Youth and Persons With Disabilities Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma Maite Nkoana-Mashabane
Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza
Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga
Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies Mondli Gungubele Khumbudzo Ntshavheni
Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Thembi Nkadimeng Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Thandi Modise
Minister of Employment and Labour Thulas Nxesi
Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Barbara Creecy
Minister of Finance Enoch Godongwana
Minister of Health Joe Phaahla
Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology Blade Nzimande
Minister of Home Affairs Aaron Motsoaledi
Minister of Human Settlements Mmamoloko Kubayi
Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor
Minister of Justice and Correctional Services Ronald Lamola
Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe
Minister of Police Bheki Cele
Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan
Minister of Public Service and Administration Noxolo Kiviet Thulas Nxesi (acting)
Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure Sihle Zikalala Patricia de Lille
Minister of Small Business Development Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams
Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu
Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture Zizi Kodwa Nathi Mthethwa
Minister of Tourism Patricia de Lille Lindiwe Sisulu
Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition Ebrahim Patel
Minister of Transport Sindisiwe Chikunga Fikile Mbalula (resigned)
Minister of Water and Sanitation Senzo Mchunu

Read: These are the new powers given to government under the load shedding state of disaster

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