“She [Dlamini-Zuma] will be replacing Pule Mabe as an MP to fill that vacancy. As to when she will sworn in we don’t know,” Nonceba Mhlauli, Mthembu’s spokeswoman has said.
Mabe resigned as an MP last month to explore a career in business.
Speaking to the Republic Mail, Dlamini-Zuma said “she has not been informed about decision to become an ANC MP.”
However, Mhlauli said she’s not in liberty to divulge information about whether she knows or not and referred us to the office of the ANC Secretary Genereal, Gwede Mantashe.
According to Molifi Tshabalala, an independent political analyst; “one can only imagine it as a strategic move in the run-up to the elective conference. This implies that we may have a cabinet reshuffle soon.
Someone of her stature cannot go Parliament and become sort of a backbench. More so, considering that parliamentary work would take much of her time to wander around the country to drum up support,” said Tshabalala.
Dlamini-Zuma launched her presidential campaign shortly after her term as chairperson of the African Union Commission came to an end in January this year. She enjoys the support of the ANC Women’s League as well as the party’s Youth League.
“If the move is not strategically from her camp, then it may be a serious blow for her presidential campaign,” Tshabalala said.
“At this juncture, one cannot make sense of a suitable ministerial position for her, if President Jacob Zuma reconstitutes his cabinet.
One thing for sure, cabinet reshuffle is on the card, especially following Mduduzi Manana’s resignation as deputy education minister. However, the position is too junior for Dlamini-Zuma,” conclude Tshabalala.
Dlamini-Zuma is expected to go up against, among others, ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize, Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu, and National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete.