The ANC Women's League has welcomed changes to President Cyril Ramaphosa had made to his Cabinet, but has pointed that it reflected a lack of gender parity.
President Ramaphosa fired 10 ministers from his Cabinet and shifted others to different portfolios on Monday evening.
The Women's League's own president, Bathabile Dlamini, was moved from the social development portfolio to become Minister of Women in the Presidency, while former finance minister Malusi Gigaba was removed from the Treasury and returned to the home affairs portfolio
In what has been described by some as a balancing act, Ramaphosa also reappointed previously fired ministers, including Nhlanhla Nene, Pravin Gordhan, Derek Hanekom and Blade Nzimande.
Ramaphosa also announced that his deputy in the political party, David "DD" Mabuza, would become South Africa's deputy president.
The ANCWL said it respected the sole prerogative that Ramaphosa has, as cited in the country's Constitution, to appoint whoever he wants to his Cabinet.
"Whilst the ANCWL welcomes the decision of His Excellency, Ramaphosa, it is important to highlight that the Cabinet reshuffle did not adequately achieve the 50/50% gender parity," it said in a statement on Tuesday.
The league said it expected the ANC, along with its government, to be the "epitome" of gender equality and for this to be reflected in decisions it takes.
"There is high level of [inequality], unemployment and poverty, [where] most of the victims are women, youth and children, and that needs radical approach to address those injustices," the league highlighted.
It also called on those being appointed to the national executive to hit the ground running to ensure that they implement the ANC's 54th national elective conference's resolutions.
Some of the new women added to Ramaphosa's Cabinet include Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, who will be in charge of monitoring and evaluation in the Presidency, Dipou Letsatsi Duba who takes over from Bongani Bongo as Minister of State Security, and former deputy minister Nomaindia Mfeketo has been promoted to the human settlements ministry.
However, Ramaphosa has rid the executive of more women than the number he has hired. This is what has led to the league's misgivings. These are:
- controversial former state enterprises minister Lynne Brown;
- former public service and administration Faith Muthambi, who was once accused of veering away from ANC policies during her previous stint as communications minister; and
- Dr Hlengiwe Mkhize, who served in the executive from October 2017.
Former deputy communications minister Thandi Mahambehlala and small business development deputy minister Nomathemba November were also axed.