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President Cyril Ramaphosa finally played his hand last Wednesday night, and it revealed a lot about the medium- to long-term political outlook for SA.

As far as the short-term goes, he is a very good bluff. For all the talk about a lean and competent cabinet that would shed the deadwood and patronage free-riders, what we got in the end was pretty much more of the same. There are too many of the same old incompetents and lots of new unknowns in the deputy ministerial ranks, almost all of them there by virtue of the ANC constituency they represent rather than their personal attributes...

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