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North West premier’s office placed under investigation

The office of the premier in North West is one of the province's departments that will be put under full administration.

Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane made the announcement on Thursday following Wednesday's Cabinet briefing. She said some issues with the office of the premier had to do with responsibilities of departments which had previously been transferred to the office of the premier. On Wednesday Supra Mahumapelo announced his retirement as premier. The province has been embroiled in violent protests as residents and ANC members called for Mahumapelo to step down. The ANC will appoint a new premier at its national executive committee meeting this weekend. "We hope and pray the ANC will appreciate the urgency," Mokonyane said. Lame duck premier She said the new premier would not be a lame duck premier. Mokonyane said the Cabinet received a second report from the inter-ministerial committee (IMC) on North West and "is satisfied with the progress in stabilising the province". Two weeks ago, in its previous meeting, the Cabinet approved that North West be placed under section 100 (1) of the Constitution. "Cabinet also increased the members of IMC with the ministers of Basic Education, Public Service and Administration, Human Settlements, Social Development, Tourism; Environmental Affairs and Transport," Mokonyane said. "The IMC was asked to do further work in the province and advise Cabinet on which of the provincial departments should be placed under Section (1) (a) or section 100(1) (b) of the Constitution." As a result of this work, the Cabinet has approved that five of the provincial departments should be placed under section 100 (1) (b) of the Constitution, meaning that they will be under full investigation and total administration of the IMC. These department's are: - Office of the premier;- Department of community safety and transport management- Department of basic education and sports development;- Department of health; and- Department of public works and roads. Five departments are to be placed under section 100(1) (a), which means the intervention team will work with those in the establishment there. These are: - Department of finance, economy and enterprise development;- Department of local government and human settlement;- Department of rural, environment and agricultural development;- Department of social Development; and- Department of tourism. Mokonyane said the Cabinet approved that the necessary correspondence be sent to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) and that communication with the relevant stakeholders in North West should take place.  The Constitution obligates the NCOP to oversee the process. The investigative work of the Justice Crime Prevention and Security Cluster (JCPS) will continue on all those matters that require the law enforcement agencies to intervene, Mokonyane said. She said the IMC's report on the North West is a "work in progress" and won't be made public as it contains untested allegations. She said the government would provide continuous updates on the matter. DM

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