Minister of Transport
Minister of Transport:
Mr Fikile April Mbalula
Fikile Mbalula is the Minister of Transport in South Africa’s 6th democratic administration, appointed to this role by President Cyril Ramaphosa in May 2019. He has previously served as the Minister of Police and Minister of Sports and Recreation. Prior to this he served as Deputy Minister of Police. These are roles that he discharged with diligence.
Mr Mbalula is a member of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of South Africa’s governing party of the African National Congress and continues to serve as its Head of Elections. He has served on this leadership structure for many years before being re-elected in December 2017. He has distinguished himself as an astute political leader in the various roles he has played from student and youth politics to national leadership roles in the ANC. As a member of the ANC’s National Executive Committee, Mbalula assumed leadership responsibilities as Head of Mobilisation/Organising, walking on the footsteps of distinguished leaders like Wilton Mkwayi, who held this position before him. He also served as Head of Elections, leading the ANC’s campaign to a 6th term as a governing party of South Africa.
Mr Mbalula cut his teeth in politics at a tender age and served in many leadership roles which include a leadership role in COSAS in 1980. He was elected President of the Botshabelo Student Congress in 1986. In 1987 he was elected to the Executive Committee of the South African Youth Congress (SAYCO) and proceeded to serve as an area member of the United Democratic Front (UDF).
When the ANC was unbanned in 1990, Mbalula was called upon to serve as a member of the ANC National Provisional Youth Committee (NPYC) under the capable leadership of firebrand Peter Mokaba. He joined a team of capable leaders to rebuild the ANC Youth League after many years in exile and in the underground. He served as ANC Youth League Regional Secretary from 1991 to 1994, and was thereafter elected ANCYL Provincial Secretary of the Free State Province from 1991 to 1994. He was subsequently elected onto the National Executive Committee of the ANC Youth League, where he served as the Secretary for Political Education. At the 20th National Congress of the ANC Youth League in 1996, he was elected Secretary-General. He was re-elected to that position at its 21st National Congress in Bloemfontein in 1998, and he continued to play this role until his election as the President of the ANC Youth League in 2004 in Johannesburg. Mbalula served as both the Secretary-General and President of the ANC Youth League, walking on Nelson Mandela’s footsteps, as the only other ANC leader who served on both these positions.
Mr Mbalula has established himself as a devoted internationalist. In international circles he has successfully established himself as a dedicated advocate of human rights, equality, rule of law and most importantly youth and women emancipation. His activism as an internationalist resulted in his election as Vice President of the World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY). Subsequently, he was elected Vice President of the International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY), an affiliate organisation of the Socialist International, representing more than 145 countries. He served under Antonio Gutteres, the current Secretary-General of the UN and George Papandreu, former Prime Minister of Greece respectively as Presidents of Socialist International. He was subsequently elected President of IUSY in February 2004, becoming the first African in the history of IUSY to occupy such a position. Over the same period, he served as a Vice President of the Socialist International in an ex officio capacity as President of IUSY.
Mbalula is also passionate about education. He has presented various papers on political issues such as globalisation, world trade and finance. He has also been passionate about advancing the national discourse. He served as a co-ordinating member of the National Medical and Dental Association (NAMDA). He also served as a co-ordinator of the Organisation of Appropriate Social Services in South Africa (OASSA). He has completed training on Leadership Skills and Counselling and is currently studying towards a Master’s degree.