"Limpopo must have woman premier"

24 June 2018 - 09:48
By Ngwako Malatji
Self-proclaimed king of kwasa Malo A Botsheba
Image: Elijar Mushiana Self-proclaimed king of kwasa Malo A Botsheba

Kwasa artist and ANC member Malo A Botsheba has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to appoint a female premier in Limpopo to succeed Stan Mathabatha. He also called on Ramaphosa to appoint a Molobedu minister in his cabinet after next year's general elections.

This comes after artist and TV icon Penny Penny complained about the dominance of Bapedi in the ANC leadership positions in the province.

Mathabatha, who was set to be elected unopposed in the party's elective conference in Polokwane yesterday, is expected to return as head of government after the election.

The premier was recalled as SA's ambassador to Ukraine by then president Jacob Zuma in 2013 to replace Cassel Mathale, whom he had fired after a political fallout.

Mathabatha was reappointed Limpopo premier after the 2014 general elections.

Technically, he still qualifies to return to office after next year's elections.

But Malo A Botsheba, real name Steve Sefofa, said Ramaphosa and the ANC should redeploy Mathabatha elsewhere.

"Stan has done a good job as head of government because he has won the fight against corruption in the province and has accelerated service delivery. He has been equal to the task and his governance skills cannot be questioned.

"But I feel that it is high time he is deployed somewhere where his skills will be better utilised and open space for a woman to run government," he said.

He said Ramaphosa would be reinforcing patriarchy if he appointed another male premier to the province.

"All the Limpopo premiers were men, and it's only fair that after the election Ramaphosa appoints a female premier."

The artist, whose branch has nominated him to be a member of the provincial executive committee (PEC) in the elective conference that started on Friday, also appealed to Ramaphosa and the ANC to appoint a Molobedu minister to his next cabinet.

"As part of the recognition of the Modjadji queenship, our culture, heritage and tradition and the existence of Balobedu tribe, Ramaphosa and our principals at Luthuli House must make sure that a Molobedu politician is part of his cabinet.

"This is for the sake of representation and has nothing to do with tribalism as some people may want to accuse me of. In fact, cabinet must consist of ministers from all the languages so that every tribe can have a sense of belonging," he said.

Limpopo ANC spokeswoman Khumbudzo Ntshavheni said the Limpopo ANC will send three names to the national leadership for a decision to appoint the next head of government. She also cautioned ANC members to refrain from advocating for the appointment of ministers on the basis of their tribal background.

"That borders on tribalism but as the ANC we have always promoted representativeness. We have recognised the queenship of Modjadji and we support the process to recognise Khelobedu as an official language but comrades must know that the decision to appoint lies with the president."