Former Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene is no longer a Member of Parliament.
City Press established today that Nene, who was unceremoniously sacked from his position as Finance Minister in December resigned from Parliament a few days later. But his resignation was only processed in January.
Nene would have been a backbencher following his removal from President Jacob Zuma’s Cabinet.
The Office of the Speaker confirmed Nene’s resignation this afternoon.
Members of the National Assembly resign to the Speaker of the National Assembly.
Mandlakazi Sigcawu, who is the spokesperson of the Speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete told City Press: “I can confirm Minister Nene handed in his resignation in December 2015 and it was processed in January 2016”.
Nene became an ANC MP in 1999 and rose through the party ranks in Parliament – moving from being the chairperson of the finance committee between 2002 and 2008 to being deputy finance minister [2009 to 2014] and being appointed finance minister in May 2014.
He was controversially sacked as Finance Minister by President Zuma in December and replaced by a little-known backbencher Des van Rooyen.
This move brought proved disastrous both for Zuma and the country, especially its economy and was criticised by many including by the ANC’s own tripartite alliance partners and led to citizens staging protest marches across the big cities.
The markets also reacted negatively to the development leading to the plummeting of the rand.
Zuma reassigned Van Rooyen to a new portfolio four days later following the performance of the rand, and appointed Pravin Gordhan to his old portfolio as Finance Minister.
At the time of Nene’s dismissal, Zuma said he had decided to remove “Mr Nhlanhla Nene as Minister of Finance, ahead of his deployment to another strategic position”.
Zuma later explained that the urgency of the changes in the leadership of the National Treasury was occasioned by the need to send nominations to Shanghai, of the head of the African Regional Centre of the New Development Bank/BRICS Bank, to be based in Johannesburg.
“Mr Nene is our candidate for this position,” he said.
But this week, the Financial Mail quoted Nene saying he has not received a formal offer to join the Brics bank.