The South African Communist Party (SACP's) has confirmed that Secretary Themba Mthembu has accepted the post of Agricultural MEC in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), after the ANC announced his appointment yesterday.
Initially, Mthembu (known for his vocal criticism of the ANC) was unsure about whether he would accept the post, amid a major Cabinet reshuffle within the KZN ANC which resulted in four MECs being removed.
Daily Maverick Associate editor, Ranjeni Munusamy says the decision to appoint Mthembu is a strategic move on KZN ANC's part, in a bid to dissolve internal branch factions.
The dominant faction in the KZN ANC has completely out-smarted the SACP on this. Mthembu has been their most vocal critic.— Ranjeni Munusamy, Associate editor at the Daily Maverick
Munusamy believes that when members of the SACP are co-opted into government, they forsake their own identity to "tow the ANC line".
According to Munusamy, this decision is an indication of the strange dynamics facing the tripartite alliance.
Although the SACP insists that Mthembu has not 'sold out', Munusamy says the SACP faces a huge dilemma.
Listen to the full conversation from The Midday Report with Stephen Grootes: