In ANC quarters, to be picked as a minister is often a reward for being on the right side of the factional battles or policy wars within the broad church.
Even those MPs who fail to make the cut, are still grateful they made it into parliament to enjoy the big salaries and other perks that come with it. Some cross their fingers hoping to sneak in at one of the many reshuffles that have become part of the political culture.
For former ministers, by looking at their own performance in the previous administration and years of service in cabinet, they know they are unlikely to be called up in future.
The eight former ministers who have resigned so far are: Derek Hanekom, Bathabile Dlamini, Jeff Radebe, Siyabonga Cwele, Dipuo Letsatsi-Duba, Susan Shabangu, Tokozile Xasa and Nomaindia Mfeketo.
With their prospects for promotion being limited, they would have weighed the losses against the gains they would make by remaining as MPs, with little chance of attracting attention as they would get stuck into committees' work.
Outside of parliamentary inquiries into the functioning of government departments and state-owned enterprises, what they do would be little known to the public.
That is more like a demotion after the accolades and prestige of running a government department.