Nomvula Mokonyane

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The Honourable
Nomvula Mokonyane
Minister of Water Affairs and Sanitation
Incumbent
Assumed office
26 May 2014
Preceded by Edna Molewa as Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs
5th Premier of Gauteng
In office
6 May 2009 – 21 May 2014
Preceded by Paul Mashatile
Succeeded by David Makhura
Member of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature
In office
27 April 1994 – 25 May 2014
Personal details
Born (1963-06-28) 28 June 1963 (age 51)
Kagiso, Transvaal
Political party African National Congress
Religion Roman Catholic

Nomvula Paula Mokonyane (born 28 June 1963, Kagiso, Gauteng) is the Minister of Water Affairs and Sanitation of South Africa, appointed on May 25th 2014 in the cabinet of South Africa under Jacob Zuma. She is also the former Premier of Gauteng province, South Africa elected following the 2009 South African general election, she was replaced by ANC Secretary David Makhura in May 2014.[1] She is also Honorary President of SA-China People's Friendship Association.

Early Life[edit]

Nomvula Paula Mokonyane, Premier of Gauteng Province, was born on 28 June 1963 in the West Rand township of Kagiso. She is the youngest in a family of 12, with six sisters and five brothers. She matriculated at Masupatsela High School, Kagiso. She is a Catholic and still an active member of her social networking club

Early Political Career[edit]

Her political career began in the early 1980s as a student activist. During that period she became a member of the Young Christian Students (YCS) and a founder member of the Congress of South African Students (Cosas). She was also the publicity secretary of the Krugersdorp branch of the United Democratic Front and an organiser of the Federation of Transvaal Women (Fedtaw), an organisation that supported the families of detainees and the youth in their fight for democratic student representative councils.

Because of her political activities, Mokonyane was continuously harassed and detained by the apartheid security police. After the unbanning of political organisations in 1990, Mokonyane was involved in the re- establishment of the ANC and SACP structures.

Political Career[edit]

Mokonyane served in the Gauteng Legislature from 1994 in various portfolio committees before she was appointed MEC of Agriculture, Conservation and Environment in 1996. She became MEC for Safety and Liaison from 1999 to 2004, and was appointed Housing MEC between 2004 and 2009. Mokonyane is also a member of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the African National Congress elected at the 52nd national conference in 2007 in Polokwane.

Premier of Gauteng[edit]

Following the South African general election, Mokonyane was sworn in as Premier of Gauteng on May 6th 2009, becoming the first female premier. She succeeded outgoing Premier Paul Mashatile. Upon her appointment as Premier, she re-organised the Gauteng provincial administration, including a planning department. Her selection by the NEC came as a surprise given that the incumbent Paul Mashatile was widely expected to retain the post. The ANC decides nationally on premiers (of provinces in which it has majorities) and then instructs provincial MPLs to elect their nominee in the official election.[2]

Prior to the South African general election, Mokonyane was not placed first on the ANC's list for Provincial Legislature. Following the elections, the ANC won 53% of the Provincial vote and she was subsequently succeeded as Premier by David Makhura, the provincial secretary of the ANC. This followed harsh criticisms of Mokonyane after she had addressed the Bekkersdal community following protests in the area, saying that the ANC doesn’t want their “dirty votes”. The comment was widely criticized by the community and public. The ANC Youth League was among the most prominent critics of the decision, and indeed called on the ruling party to reconsider and reappoint Mashatile, who had earlier taken over from Mbhazima Shilowa on the latter's defection from the ANC to form the breakaway party Congress of the People.[2]

Minister of Water Affairs and Sanitation[edit]

On May 25 2014, Mokonyane was appointed Minister of Water Affairs and Sanitation, a new Ministry created to combat water issues and serious sanitation problems across the country. Mokonyane is not a Member of Parliament, but the Constitution of South Africa allows for two Ministers to be appointed from outside the National Legislature. In June 2014, Mokonyane visited Bloemhof, in the Lekwa Teemananeng local municipality in the North West Province, following an outbreak of Diarrhoea in the area thought to be linked to dirty drinking water.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Mokonyane declared premier". News24. 6 May 2009. Retrieved 6 May 2009. 
  2. ^ a b South African Press Association (4 May 2009). "Zuma: 'Those not put in govt must not cry'". Mail & Guardian. Retrieved 4 May 2009. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Paul Mashatile
Premier of Gauteng
6 May 2009 – present
Succeeded by
David Makhura