13 ministers in 13 years

President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed Khumbudzo Ntshavheni as the new communication minister, replacing Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, who has been in the role since 2018.

The latest communications minister appointment came as part of a cabinet reshuffle by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Ramaphosa said he made changes to the national executive to improve the capacity of the government to effectively navigate the challenging time the country is facing.

These challenges include the Covid-19 pandemic, the violent and destructive protests, and rebuilding the economy.

In a curious move, Ramaphosa swapped the small business development minister and communication ministers.

Why he thinks it is a good idea to take someone out of a role in which they have experience and move them to a new field is anyone’s guess.

At least Ntshavheni has some ICT experience. She served as chief operating officer at the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) and chief information officer for the Limpopo Provincial Department of Local Government and Housing.

She was also a municipal manager of the Ba-Phalaborwa Local Municipality in Limpopo from 2008 to 2010 and tourism manager at trade and investment Limpopo.

Ntshavheni was minister of small business development from 29 May 2019 and acting minister in the presidency from 27 January 2021.

She holds an MBA degree from Bradford University in the United Kingdom and two BA Hons degrees from the University of Johannesburg.

Ramaphosa has also appointed a new deputy communications minister — Philly Mapulane — who replaced Pinky Kekana.

Mapulane was the chairperson of Parliament’s portfolio committee on higher education, science and technology.

He previously served as the chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on environmental affairs.

Before joining Parliament in 2014, Mapulane was MEC for the North West Provincial Legislature and treasurer of the ANC provincial executive committee.

The list below shows South Africa’s communications ministers over the last 13 years.


Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri: June 1999 – April 2009

Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri


Manto Tshabalala-Msimang: April 2009 – May 2009

Manto Tshabalala-Msimang


Siphiwe Nyanda: May 2009 – October 2010

Siphiwe Nyanda


Roy Padayachie: November 2010 – October 2011

Roy Padayachie


Dina Pule: October 2011 – July 2013

Dina Pule


Yunus Carrim: July 2013 – May 2014

Yunus Carrim


Faith Muthambi: May 2014 – March 2017

Faith Muthambi


Ayanda Dlodlo: March 2017 – October 2017

Ayanda Dlodlo


Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane: October 2017 – February 2018

Mmamoloko Kubayi


Nomvula Mokonyane: February 2018 – November 2018

Nomvula Mokonyane


Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams: November 2018 – August 2021


Jackson Mthembu: April 2020 to June 2020


Khumbudzo Ntshavheni: August 2021 to current

Khumbudzo Ntshavheni


Now read: Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams placed on special leave – 1 month with no pay

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13 ministers in 13 years