What exactly is the point of being a minister? The question may sound silly but where there is a political party deeply enmeshed into the government mechanism, the status quo seems to be that policy magically emerges from a "collective". Ministers are then (meant to) passively implement the policy. Of course, you can add on top the ministerial cars, bag carriers and the rest. Yet the constitution has a different view. Ministers have delegated executive authority to act — in “developing and implementing national policy”. The nub really comes to the ministerial oath to be a “true and faithful counsellor”, read together with section 83(c) , which says that the president must “promote all that will advance the republic”. Ministers are meant to work to make S A a better place. That sounds like a pretty exciting job. Has anyone before found the job of finance minister fun, though? You probably need a comfort in your own skin from experience, a sense of purpose, a fearlessness to enjoy the...

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