By Novell Zwange – JOHANNESBURG – President Jacob Zuma has requested the Speaker of the National Assembly, Mr Max Sisulu, to appoint sacked former Minister of Communications. Republic of South Africa, Retired General Siphiwe Nyanda as the President’s Parliamentary Counsellor in the National Assembly with immediate effect.
General Nyanda will be the President Zuma’s personal representative in Parliament, keeping him abreast regarding developments and providing advice on the course on action required on issues. The President ceased to be a member of the National Assembly soon after election as President, in terms of the Constitution of the Republic.
Rtd Gen. Nyanda takes over from the previous parliamentary counsellor Ayanda Dlodlo, who was promoted to deputy minister of public service and administration during the Cabinet reshuffle at the end of October this year.
He will manage the President’s liaison with presiding officers and structures in parliament as well as relations with leaders of political parties represented in parliament.
Said Rtd Gen. Nyanda: “I look forward to this deployment and the opportunity to contribute to strengthening relations between parliament and the executive. I am also encouraged by the President’s determination to promote good working relations with political parties represented in parliament. We have to further develop these relations so that we can identify and highlight issues that are in the national interest, that we can work on together”.
Rtd Gen. Nyanda who has never served as an MP was said to have been offered an ambassadorship to Germany to ease the pain of being kicked out of Cabinet, but declined the offer in favour of serving as Zuma’s liaison with Parliament.
Rtd Gen. Nyanda, a former journalist, is the former Minister of Communications. Amongst many senior positions in the military, he served as the chief of the South African National Defence Force and as chief of staff of the ANC’s military wing, uMkhonto Wesizwe.
President Zuma welcomed General Nyanda to the Presidency and wished him well on his new appointment.