Nene ‘ready for any post’

CityPress - - News - HLENGIWE NHLA­BATHI hlengiwe.nhla­bathi@city­press.co.za

Former fi­nance min­is­ter Nh­lanhla Nene has gra­ciously ac­cepted his sack­ing and says he is ready to take on a new task.

Nene told City Press that he has wel­comed his fate with “a pure heart”, and even hinted that he would serve in what­ever ca­pac­ity the pres­i­dent wants him to.

“I’m a ser­vant of the ANC and of this coun­try. I get de­ployed and I go where I’m needed and do what is ex­pected of me, and make sure I serve to the best of my abil­ity,” he said yes­ter­day.

There has been talk that Nene may, in re­tal­i­a­tion for the way he was fired, refuse to take up a post as head of the African branch of the Brics Devel­op­ment Bank, which is still in its for­ma­tion stage. The bank will be based in Jo­han­nes­burg.

But Nene said all that was just talk and that he was wait­ing to hear the fi­nal de­ci­sion on his re­de­ploy­ment.

Govern­ment of­fi­cials in­sist that he was not “fired”, but would be de­ployed to the Brics Bank. They be­lieve that he is al­most cer­tain to get the nod for the post.

Nene even joked about his ti­tle as a for­mer min­is­ter, say­ing peo­ple would have to get used to it.

His col­leagues have been un­happy with his sack­ing and have ques­tioned Zuma’s de­ci­sion to re­move such an ef­fi­cient min­is­ter dur­ing such an un­favourable eco­nomic en­vi­ron­ment. The pub­lic has also re­acted with shock at Zuma dump­ing Nene for David “Des” van Rooyen, who was sworn in on Thurs­day.

Nene made it clear he did not want to talk about his suc­ces­sor be­cause it would be un­fair.

When asked how he felt about the out­cry from other Cabi­net min­is­ters, Nene said: “I don’t know how I feel be­cause if it had hap­pened to one of my col­leagues, I would also feel sad be­cause you get used to work­ing closely with some­one and the next thing he is gone.”

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