Zola Skweyiya resigns as MP

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Pretoria - The current Minister of Social Development, Dr Zola Skweyiya, has resigned as a Member of Parliament and from politics, due to health reasons.

In a statement, the outgoing Minister Skweyiya stated that he had communicated his decision to the African National Congress, which had him at number 13 on their list of candidates to fill the seats allocated to them in the National Assembly.

His announcement comes as the National Assembly met earlier today for the first time to swear in new MPs.

"Today, I retired from parliamentary politics due to health reasons. This is a decision I communicated to my movement, the African National Congress (ANC), in the past five years, and I reminded them sometime last year.

"I would like to thank the ANC and the people of South Africa for having confidence in me and trusted me to serve in government for 15 years," said 67-year-old Mr Skweyiya.

He further thanked civil society, faith based organisations and the private sector for the support and the pivotal role they had played in improving the quality of life of those less fortunate.

Mr Skweyiya has been a Member of Parliament since 1994 and was appointed by former President Nelson Mandela as Minister of Public Service and Administration.

As a member of ANC National Executive Committee and National Working Committee, he was appointed in 1999 as the Minister of Social Development.

The former Deputy Minister of Health and Deputy Speaker of National Assembly, Nozizwe Routledge-Madlala has also announced she is no longer available to take her position in Parliament.

Congress of the People (Cope) President Mosiuoa Lekota has also said he is no longer available to take up one of his party's 30 seats in the National Assembly. This week Cope indicated that Mr Lekota would be based at it's party headquarters in Johannesburg