Tue, 20 Aug 2019

After falling on his sword as minister of finance, Nhlanhla Nene has also resigned as an MP, the ANC confirmed on Friday.

ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu's office received Nene's resignation letter on Friday.

This follows Nene's testimony before the commission of inquiry into state capture two weeks ago, in which he backtracked on previous remarks about meeting the Guptas in social settings, revealing that he had met the controversial brothers several times between 2009 and 2014.

In the days after his testimony, pressure mounted on Nene to resign, as it did on President Cyril Ramaphosa to remove him.

"As a consequence of these developments, Minister Nene submitted a letter of resignation this morning in which he requested that I relieve him of the position of the minister of finance," Ramaphosa said when he announced that he had accepted his resignation. he then appointed former Reserve Bank Governor Tito Mboweni in his place.

In his letter, Nene indicated that his resignation as MP was effective from last Tuesday.

"I take this opportunity to thank you for the working relationship we have had during my tenure as a Member of Parliament," Nene wrote to Mthembu.

"I am also indebted to the ANC and the people of South Africa for having given me the opportunity to serve our country in my capacity as an elected representative," Nene wrote.

Mthembu thanked Nene for his service to the ANC and South Africans.

"There are very few people who are able to own up to their error of judgement. Comrade Nene is amongst the few," Mthembu said.

Mthembu also congratulated Mboweni on his appointment and said he looked forward to him delivering the Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement on Tuesday.

Nene returned to Cabinet when Ramaphosa appointed a new Cabinet in February this year, after former president Jacob Zuma had controversially replaced him with ANC backbencher Des van Rooyen in a late night Cabinet reshuffle in December 2015.

Nene testified before the Zondo commission that it was his opposition to Zuma's pet project, the Russian nuclear deal, which caused Zuma to axe him.

Nene was sworn in as a MP shortly after his reappointment as finance minister earlier this year.

The ANC whippery didn't indicate who will take Nene's seat.

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