Meet SA's new Deputy President

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

South Africa has a new Deputy President, the ANC deputy president and former Mpumalanga premier, David Dabede Mabuza.

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced his appointment to Cabinet in a late night reshuffle on Monday.

Mabuza, who is also endearingly referred to by his supporters as ‘DD’, was born in Brondal, Mathafeni, on 25 August 1960.

Mabuza, who is a teacher by training, matriculated at Khumbula High School and furthered his studies at Mngwenya College of Education and later acquired his Bachelor's degree at the University of South Africa.

The young Mabuza cut his teeth as an activist in the student movement and served as a Secretary of the Azanian Students Organisation (AZASO) in 1984.

He did a stint as a teacher when he taught at KaNgwane Department of Education from 1986 to 1988 and he was a Principal of Lungisani Secondary School from 1989 to 1993.

According to the ANC website, he later served as the Chairperson of the National Education Union of South Africa (NEUSA) from 1986 to 1988. 

He further served as a Co-ordinator of the National Education Crisis Committee (NECC) from 1987 to 1989 and a Chairperson of the South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU) from 1988 to 1991. 

He has been a member of Mpumalanga Provincial Legislature since 1994. Previously, he was a member of the Executive Council of Agriculture and Land Administration, as well as Executive Council of Department of Roads and Transport.

In 2007, Mabuza was directly elected to the ANC NEC and was subsequently elected chairperson of the party in Mpumalanga in 2008.

Mabuza became Mpumalanga premier in 2009, a position he continued to hold until his election as the Deputy President of the ANC at its 54th National Conference in Nasrec in 2017. 

Mabuza’s self-appointed moniker is ‘The Cat’ – which is a reference to his constant political renewal as well as his ability to bounce back from political defeats.

Among others, President Ramaphosa named Nhlanhla Nene as Finance Minister and Pravin Gordon as Public Enterprises Minister, in a far-reaching cabinet reshuffle. He also named Bheki Cele to head the Police Ministry, Naledi Pandor to Higher Education, Gwede Manstashe to Mineral Resources and Lindiwe Sisulu to International Relations.

The new cabinet members, including Mabuza, are expected to take their oath of office in Cape Town this afternoon. -

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