Statecraft has emerged as a key theme in ANC and alliance meetings since President Cyril Ramaphosa announced in his state of the nation address that he was reviewing the configuration of the cabinet.The government is also looking into the size of the public service, after reaching a wage deal with state employees that senior government sources acknowledge has strained the fiscus.After a two-day cabinet lekgotla last week, one news report said 30,000 public-service jobs were to be cut, prompting a union outcry. Cosatu’s health & education affiliate, Nehawu, threatened to withdraw support for the ANC in next year’s elections. But the government has denied the jobs-cut report.At its lekgotla last month the ANC reaffirmed that reconfiguration of the cabinet is a critical pillar in creating stable, effective and professional government at all levels.The work is already under way; Ramaphosa has promised that the process will be completed next year, and he is expected to appoint a new team...

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