Zuma to split telecoms department - again - TechCentral

Zuma to split telecoms department – again

President Jacob Zuma

President Jacob Zuma

If President Jacob Zuma didn’t already have enough on his plate after Thursday’s constitutional court judgment, he has announced he is splitting the department of telecommunications & postal services into two separate departments with immediate effect.

It’s the second time the former department of communications has been carved into separate ministries.

Zuma’s shock decision means there will now be three government departments in charge of formulating policy for the information and communications technology (ICT) sector.

The move comes just two years after Zuma announced he would split the department of communications in two, creating telecoms & postal services as well as communications. He was roundly criticised by opposition political parties and sector analysts at the time.

Now, a new department of spectrum management & postal services will take responsibility for managing spectrum allocation and the Post Office, while the rest of the telecoms department’s functions will be folded into a newly created department of ICT and fibre-optic affairs.

The new spectrum management department is expected to issue a policy later this year on how spectrum will be awarded.

In a surprise move, Zuma has appointed Sahara Computers founder Atul Gupta as interim minister until a permanent appointment is made. Gupta, who will take the reins at the new ministry effective immediately, has been charged with fast-tracking the allocation of spectrum.

The ICT and fibre-optic affairs ministry, meanwhile, will be headed by short-lived finance minister Des van Rooyen, who moves across from co-operative governance & traditional affairs.

Faith Muthambi will continue as minister of communications, which still has oversight of the SABC and South Africa’s digital migration project.

The presidency has not provided any formal reasons for the decision to split telecoms & postal services.

Opposition parties have expressed outrage at the move, which they believe will lead to further paralysis in decision making by government on ICT issues.

Zuma, however, has already moved to justify his decision, saying in a television interview early on Friday morning: “Anyone angry about this is a real fool. Heh, heh, heh.”  — © 2016 NewsCentral Media

  • This was TechCentral’s April Fools’ Day joke for 1 April 2016


  1. Following the damning conclusions handed down at yesterday’s Con Court hearing I sense that there will be a very nervous April 1 candidate at the SABC right now in the form of a Mr. Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
    Motsoeneng has previously been weighed and found exceedingly wanting by the Public Protector hence the hasty band aid appointment of Faith Whatserface to save his bacon. However, now that the PP’s recommendations are found to be BINDING by the Con Court , it’s pack yer bags and hand in yer security card time for Hlaudi to spend a whole lot more time with his family and a whole lot less with ours.

  2. Arno Van der Walt on

    Hahaha I’m sure you are right, but it feels like every day in SA is an April fools day 🙂

  3. CharlieTango on

    It’s sad that this is so close to the truth in terms of the clowns that are running the government circus.

  4. As should Faith’s aider-and-abetter in chief Namma Wan.
    Yet even at this stage the broad rump of the Afro Nationalist faction in the ANC still come out swinging in his support!
    This defies belief, it’s like watching a Monty Python sketch in living colour right here in the 21st century. You simply cannot make this stuff up any more. Either they are in willful denial or are mischievously unable to comprehend the ethics of a constitutional democracy.
    One would have imagined that being the disciplined cadre that he claims to be, to save his ‘beloved’ party and country party any further set backs and embarrassment Namma Wan would have taken the honourable option and resigned, but no, he stays on and on and on.
    Jeppers creepers, talk about skin like a Rhinoceros is far too light a term for this individual.

  5. Tuesday Is Soylent Green Day on

    The only problem with this fool is that it wouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone if it really happened.

  6. After last night’s “apology” this is really not that far fetched. Hope he doesn’t read this to get some ideas 🙁
    Interesting how the coverage of international media like SKY NEWS only showed the “apology for inconvenience caused” part at the end even without most of the inconvenience, so internationally he came over as a very humble and apologetic person.

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