24/10/2017 07:41 SAST | Updated 24/10/2017 07:41 SAST

Mkhize: ANC Top 6 Did Not Know About Reshuffle

Zweli Mhkize has confirmed that Zuma did not consult the ANC's top leadership before his reshuffle.

Siphiwe Sibeko / Reuters
Zweli Mkhize.

ANC treasurer-general and presidential hopeful Zweli Mkhize has confirmed that the party's top six were not informed of President Jacob Zuma's plans to reshuffle his Cabinet last week, and has called for an urgent meeting between the ANC and the SA Communist Party (SACP).

In an interview with Daily Maverick, Mkhize said: "We were not expecting the Cabinet reshuffle. There are tensions based on decisions that have been made by the alliance partners -- for instance, the May Day challenge."

Zuma was booed at a Cosatu May Day rally in Bloemfontein this year.

"The main issue is to get an urgent meeting between the ANC and the SACP -- this is something needs to be dealt with immediately," Mkhize said.

Last week, ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said Zuma "informed" the ANC of the reshuffle, but did not consult with the top six. SACP leader and former higher education minister Blade Nzimande was axed in the reshuffle. Mantashe said this was "a pity".

Speaking on Talk Radio 702 on Monday night, Nzimande said Zuma had "provoked" the SACP with this latest move.

A bilateral meeting between the ANC and the SACP was cancelled in August, reportedly owing to a lack of preparation between the two parties. This would have been the first meeting between the alliance partners since Zuma's cabinet reshuffle in March.