South Africa’s newly appointed finance minister will not be sworn in because he is already a minister, the office of the President Jacob Zuma has said.
President Zuma named Pravin Gordhan, current minister of cooperative governance and traditional affairs, as new finance chief on Sunday in a dramatic U-turn that gave South Africa its third minister in a week.
Zuma made a baffling decision to appoint Pravin Gordhan as the new Finance Minister, replacing David “Des” Van Rooyen, who was only sworn into the post on Thursday.
Van Rooyen will now, after a mere handful of days on the job, take up the position vacated by Gordhan as minister of co-operative governance and traditional affairs (CoGTA).
In a statement sent out on Sunday evening, the president said that after making the decision to replace former finance minister Nhlanhla Nene with the little known Van Rooyen, he had “received many representations to reconsider my decision”.
“As a democratic government, we emphasize the importance of listening to the people and to respond to their views,” Zuma said.
The axing of Nene, who had a reputation of being very knowledgeable, late on Wednesday last week, sent the Rand into a tailspin, with the currency plummeting to beyond R16 to the dollar.