Former Provincial Secretary of the African National Congress (ANC) in the Free State, William Bulwane, has resigned from the provincial legislature after less than one month in office. In a statement issued by Legislature on Monday afternoon, the Office of the ANC Chief Whip confirmed the news of Bulwane’s resignation. Bulwane’s resignation is effective from 23 April 2018. He will now be replaced by Montsheng Tsiu, who served the National Education, Health and Allied Workers Union (Nehawu) in the province as a chairperson in previous years. She is also a Nursing Director at the Free State Department of Health. “Tsiu brings a wealth of experience and strong political and professional credentials gained during her time as a trade unionist and nurse. We have no doubt that the new change will further reinforce the ANC in the Free State Legislature and is also another firm confirmation of the ANC’s unflinching confidence in women leaders,” the statement read.
Bulwane’s resignation thus throws out the theory that he was earmarked as the MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), which was left vacant following Sefora Ntombela’s appointment as the new Free State Premier. Thus, Tsiu as a recently elected Member of Provincial Legislature (MPL), could possibly be the new Cogta MEC or Ntombela could decide to reshuffle her into other departments and fill the Cogta seat with one of the existing MPLs. Ntombela is expected to shuffle her cabinet soon and while she, during her inaugural ceremony, stated that she would not be making any drastic changes to her cabinet, she firmly stated that she would be elevating more women to key positions during her tenure. Ntombela, who doubles as the Deputy President of the ANC Women’s League also said that people could expect greater service delivery, increased employment opportunities as well as well executed government programmes. It remains to be seen who Ntombela will keep in her cabinet among those presently serving as MPLs as well as which MPLs she will do away with.