South Africa: Appointment of the new Advisory Council Members
President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced the appointment of new members of the National Orders Advisory Council.
National Orders are the highest awards that South Africa, through the President, bestows on citizens and eminent foreign nationals. The Advisory Council on National Orders processes nominations of deserving South Africans and foreign nationals and advises the President to assist him in the execution of this important responsibility.
South Africa currently bestows the following National Orders on distinguished persons:
1. The Order of Mendi for Bravery
2. The Order of Ikhamanga
3. The Order of Luthuli
4. The Order of Mapungubwe
5. The Order of the Baobab
6. The Order of the Companions of O R Tambo
The new members of Advisory Council are as follows:
Mr Mandla Langa, who has been appointed as the Chairperson, is a veteran of the struggle for liberation, a celebrated poet, short story writer and novelist, as well as a businessman. He is an esteemed member of the Order of Ikhamanga.
Dr Patience Mthunzi-Kufa has been appointed as the Deputy Chairperson. Dr Patience Mthunzi-Kufa is a South African physicist and Head of Biophotonics research at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). She is an esteemed member of the Order of Mapungubwe. As lead for biophotonics research at the CSIR, Dr. Mthunzi uses high power lasers to characterise and treat diseases and optically manipulate cells at the microscopic scale. She is one of the most prominent black women scientists in South Africa.
Dr Glenda Gray, is a highly respected Research Professor and co- founder of the Perinatal HIV Research Unit at the University of Witwatersrand, who is based at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital. She is internationally recognised for her research in the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, HIV vaccines, HIV among adolescents, HIV prevention, assessing sexual and other risk factors in HIV acquisition, fertility and reproduction in women in the context of HIV epidemics, and recently also microbicide. She is an esteemed member of the Order of Mapungubwe.
Dr Irvin Khoza is a South African football administrator and businessman. Nicknamed “Iron Duke/Squveve”, he is the Chairman of Orlando Pirates Football Club, Chairman of the South African Premier Soccer League and by virtue of this, Vice-President of the South African Football Association. He has served football in many capacities, the most prominent of which was when he was the Chairman of the World Cup Bid Committee, as well as the Chairman of Local Organizing Committee of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Dr Peki Emelia “Nothembi” Mkhwebane, is one of the country’s respected traditional music composers and performers, who is renowned for her isiNdebele music songs. She is an esteemed member of the Order of Ikhamanga.
Ms Natalie Du Toit is a double-gold Olympic swimmer. She is best known for the gold medals she won at the 2004 Paralympic Games as well as the Commonwealth Games. She was one of two Paralympians to compete at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing; the other being table tennis player Natalia Partyka. She is an esteemed member of the Order of Ikhamanga.
Ms Yvonne Chaka Chaka is an internationally recognized South African singer, songwriter, actress, entrepreneur, humanitarian and teacher. Ms. Chaka Chaka is a champion for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and malaria, the United Nations MDG Envoy for Africa, and the Goodwill Ambassador for the Roll Back Malaria Partnership. She was chosen by Nelson Mandela as the first ambassador for his children’s fund, and has also established her own charity, the Princess of Africa Foundation, using the name first given to her by fans in Uganda. She is an esteemed member of the Order of Ikhamanga.
Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng is the former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cape Town. She served as president of the Association for Mathematics Education of South Africa from 2002 to 2006, as founding chairperson of the Board of the South African Mathematics Foundation from 2004 to 2006, and secretary and member of the Executive Committee of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education from 2003 to 2007. She is an esteemed member of the Order of the Baobab.
Ms Puseletso Madumise is an experienced player in the NGO sector and the development field in general. She is the Gauteng Chairperson of the South African National Non-governmental Organization Coalition (SANGOCO). She also currently serves as a member of the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Advisory Council, which was established by Gauteng Premier David Makhura in 2017.
Prof Sarojini Nadar is a transdisciplinary researcher within the fields of gender and religion, with a more broad focus on religion and social justice – spanning issues of race, class, gender and sexuality. She sits on five international journal editorial boards including the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, and she is also the editor-in-chief of the African Journal of Gender and Religion. She is the Desmond Tutu Research Chair in Religion and Social Justice at the University of the Western Cape.
Dr Stavros Nicolaou is one of the most prominent and active businesspeople in South Africa. He is currently the Aspen Pharmacare Group’s Senior Executive responsible for strategic trade development. Aspen Pharmacare is one of South Africa’s most globalized international companies with a presence in over 50 localities globally. He was previously CEO of Aspen’s Export Business. He is a previous winner of the SA Institute of Marketing Management (IMM) Health Care Marketer of the Year Award. He holds an honorary doctorate from Wits University.
The President extends his gratitude to the outgoing members of the National Orders Advisory Council. The outgoing Council has served the country exceptionally well over a number of years. We thank them wholeheartedly for this national service. We welcome Mr Langa and the new team and look forward to working with them as we celebrate excellence, selflessness and the promotion of a common nationhood.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of The Presidency: Republic of South Africa.
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