Mabuza resigns as MP, paving the way for Ramaphosa’s cabinet reshuffle

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Deputy President David Mabuza has resigned as a Member of Parliament. The move clears the way for President Cyril Ramaphosa to appoint a new second-in-command.

Mabuza’s resignation comes ahead of Ramaphosa’s expected Cabinet reshuffle.

Who is David Mabuza?

David Dabede Mabuza is affectionately known as DD, with some calling him the CAT with nine lives. Mabuza was born in 1960 and calls Mpumalanga his home Province. His love for politics was ignited after being exposed to the Black Consciousness movement when he was still a student. Mabuza started his career in the classroom as a teacher and later became a principal.

He was also chairperson of the South African Democratic Teachers Union. Post-1994 Mabuza became the MEC for Education in Mpumalanga and had occupied the office for four years when the scandal broke about the 1998 matric results.

He made a comeback the following year, in 1999, this time as MEC for housing. This paved the way for him to be at the helm of the ANC in the Mpumalanga Province. He was elected as the provincial chairperson of the party in Mpumalanga from 2008 to 2017.

Throughout his tenure as chairperson of the ANC in Mpumalanga, he increased the size and influence of the ANC in the province. But his dominance in the party came when he partnered with North West’s chairperson Supra Mahumapelo and the then Free State Chairperson and premier Ace Magashule.

Premier league

The three would become known as the premier league, a grouping known to be closely associated with former president Jacob Zuma. The premier league was also instrumental in and endorsed Zuma for re-election to the ANC presidency ahead of the party’s 53rd National Conference.

During the 54th national conference, the three were seen as kingmakers, but Mabuza broke ranks with the premier league, with the second-largest group of voting delegates. He encouraged delegates to vote for unity in the party, which saw Cyril Ramaphosa emerging victorious.

The unity campaign also worked in his favour, as it saw him ascending from the chairperson position in Mpumalanga to deputy president of the ANC and the country. But at the 55th national conference of the party, it all tumbled down.

Mabuza was ousted by the now Deputy President of the party Paul Mashatile after he had refused a nomination from the floor.  After he lost his position as deputy president of the party, at the ANC’s December conference, there was much speculation on his future.

But on the sidelines of a funeral in Mpumalanga, David Mabuza confirmed that he had tendered his resignation to President Ramaphosa.