In the clearest indication yet, Premier Supra Mahumspelo has suggested that he may resign from office.
At the end of his budget vote speech in the provincial legislature on Tuesday morning, Mahumapelo said the Speaker of the House would receive a letter from him by Friday.
Quoting late president Nelson Mandela, Mahumapelo said: “The time for healing of the wounds has come. The moment to bridge the chasms that divide us has come. The time to build is upon us.”
The embattled premier however stops short of detailing the contents of that letter.
Mahumapelo delivered the news that he may step down as premier in a complicated way.
The premier’s closing paragraph during his address to members of the provincial legislature this morning can be interpreted as him giving in to calls to step down.
He committed to writing to Speaker Susan Dantjie by the end of the week.
“It is therefore in this context of creating the essence of the absence of presence (sic), that in full compliance with the Constitution of the Republic, the Speaker will receive a commitment in writing before Friday this week.”
Mahumapelo also called on North West residents to always remain vigilant and urged members of the legislature to work as a collective.
He said it was a “miracle” that recent events had reignited a spirit of resilience that kept the longing for liberation alive.
Last month, President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed an inter-ministerial task team to address the apparent crisis in the province, particularly in the health sector.
The deadline for the task team to report back to the Presidency on the state of governance in the province is May 9. The North West has been rocked by violent protests calling on Mahumapelo to step down. The health department has also crumbled after members of the National Health, Education and Allied Workers Union embarked on a strike more than two months ago.
The Hawks raided the premier’s office earlier this year and are investigating several allegations against him and his government.
These include a mobile clinic contract awarded by the North West Department of Health to Gupta-linked Mediosa, and a R1.5m gift of cattle to former president Jacob Zuma.
Democratic Alliance provincial leader Joe Mcgluwa labelled Mahumapelo’s speech “nothing but a Gupta budget”.
“This budget of the premier has served as a platform for corrupt individuals and a corrupt syndicate. There has been too many allegations of his involvement in corruption.”
Mcgluwa said the party strongly believed that Mahumapelo would resign on Friday.
“The fact that his wife was here today is a strong indication that he is on his way out. Should that be the case, we say good riddance and we wish him well.”
Mcgluwa was speaking on the side-lines following Mahumapelo’s speech.