When MPs take their oath of office they promise to serve the country to the best of their ability. They are very quick to tell us what an honour it is when called to serve, but we have seen time and again that the honour is greatly enhanced if they serve as a member of the president’s cabinet, with its generous salary and benefits. Not that MPs get paid badly.

A few days after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced his new, somewhat smaller, cabinet, those who did not make the cut started to hand in letters of resignation from the National Assembly. To date nine former ministers have resigned. They are SA’s longest-serving minister Jeff Radebe, Siyabonga Cwele, Derek Hanekom, Bathabile Dlamini, Mildred Oliphant, Nomaindia Mfeketo, Susan Shabangu, Tokozile Xasa and Dipuo Letsatsi-Duba.

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