Cope wants Chikane as Gauteng premier

Ido Lekota

Ido Lekota

The director-general in the Presidency, Reverend Frank Chikane, has been nominated by the Congress of the People in Gauteng for the premiership.

Appointed by former president Thabo Mbeki, Chikane, pictured, was expected to leave when Mbeki was recalled by the ANC. However, acting President Kgalema Motlanthe invited him to stay on. His term ends when the current government closes shop after the elections.

Yesterday, Gauteng Cope provincial secretary John Ngcebetsha confirmed that Chikane had been nominated by all the regions in Gauteng as the party's candidate for the premiership.

Also nominated as a candidate for the Gauteng premiership is former Sedibeng district municipality mayor Mlungisi Hlongwane. Hlongwane is Cope's Gauteng chairman.

"It is true that Reverend Frank Chikane and Mlungisi Hlongwane have been nominated by all Cope regions in Gauteng," said Ngcebetsha.

Hlongwane is said to have received most support from the Sedibeng and Tshwane regions.

A Cope insider revealed that two other candidates for the premiership of Gauteng are Ngcebetsha and Nozipho Khalipa, a former member of the South African Communist Party. Professor Wiseman Nkuhlu has been nominated by Cope for the Eastern Cape premiership.