Extract

During his term in office, former president Jacob Zuma reshuffled his cabinet 11 times. It was his main political weapon, to secure loyalty and to punish those who refused to toe the line. It was one of the ways Zuma used the state to build and wield political power.

The selection and arrangement of ministers and deputies was also the mechanism to enable state capture, now the trademark of the Zuma presidency.

Skill, performance and delivery outcomes were never the main considerations. It was always about the power play, placating constituencies in the ANC alliance and opening doors to loot.

The big questions now are whether President Cyril Ramaphosa has a different game plan and whether he will keep his word to use the national executive as his delivery machinery.

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