By Eamonn Ryan

From a skills and development, the new cabinet is a breath of fresh air – with new energy evident in the key appointments, which bodes well for a high skill sector like refrigeration and HVAC.

Nobuhle Nkabane

Nobuhle Nkabane. Government website

Given student aid difficulties at NSFAS and the calls for Blade Nzimande to leave the portfolio, we welcome the fact that the Higher Education department will now be standing alone after being split from its previous partner in Science & Technology. The New Minister for Higher Education (it seems to have lost the ‘and Training’ moniker) will be Nobuhle Nkabane (ANC). She will have two deputy Ministers. One will be the incumbent deputy, veteran Buti Manamela (ANC) and the other will be newcomer Mimmy Gondwe from the Democratic Alliance. A vital job like this requires fresh energy. This news may be welcomed by many student groups.

Nkabane previously held the position of Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy from 2021 until 2024, and so comes with some experience in governance. She also has a strong educational background which includes degrees from the Durban University of Technology, the University of South Africa, and the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Siviwe Gwarube (who is from the Democratic Alliance) takes over the basic education portfolio after a long run there by Angie Motshekga. The Deputy Minister will remain the same,  Reginah Mhaule (ANC), indicating a careful balancing of new energy and continuity.

Let all South Africans now encourage all the ministers and deputies, of whatever political persuasions, to consider the best for our country and all who live here. Let them put aside their egos and commitment to their party and act on what is best for all.

All political parties need to now put aside their selfish ambitions to cooperate for the good of the people and disregard any and all forces trying to destabilise the government.