The SA Chapter of the International Women’s Forum (IWFSA) congratulates President Cyril Ramaphosa on his election as president of the country and wishes him well in discharging the profound obligations that come with his office.
He carries with him the hopes of a nation bruised by an era of scandal and misrule.
The IWFSA wishes to urge President Ramaphosa to continue the ANC’s record on promoting gender equity in cabinet, and enlist the services of some of our nation’s finest women capable of rising to the enormous challenges he and his government confront.
We believe there are women of proven ability, integrity and courage, fit for the daunting task that lies ahead.
We, propose the following outstanding women and others of similar ilk to serve in a new cabinet and suggest that their appointment to cabinet would signal to South Africans that President Ramaphosa means business when he says he is committed to professional, ethical governance: Thuli Madonsela; Naledi Pandor; Lindiwe Sisulu; Makhosi Khoza; Cheryl Carolus; Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and more.
If any person can be singled out as a national hero in the story of our recent past, it is our former Public Protector, Madonsela, who refused to be cowed in her singular pursuit of justice, in the face of threats and attempts to paint her as a servant of the enemy. Her courage and knowledge of the law were often her only protection, and she prevailed.
Science and Technology Minister Pandor has shown herself to be a politician of integrity and was among the first in cabinet to publicly question behaviour she could not agree with. She is a forward-looking, competent professional, with extensive institutional knowledge of government.
Sisulu is another seasoned cabinet minister with the skills and determination demanded by the times. She has spoken passionately of the need to return to the governing ANC’s values in service of the people, a sentiment which the IWFSA wholly endorses.
Former ANC MP Khoza is a courageous, outspoken politician and an instinctive democrat. Rebuilding the trust of citizens requires people of honour in government who will not be silent in the face of abuse, and Khoza has shown herself to be such a woman.
Carolus, with her distinguished record in the struggle and in business, would bring to the cabinet a unique perspective that spans the corporate world and that of the poor and working class. She is a bold, dynamic leader who would quickly deliver results.
Mlambo-Ngcuka is another woman whose mettle has been proven in the furnace of South African politics and her skills honed in government. As the Under-Secretary General of the United Nations and Director of UN Women, she would bring a broad international view to the country’s development challenges.
The IWFSA commends these exceptional citizens to President Ramaphosa. We urge him to consider them for appointment to cabinet as capable, courageous, determined women who would strengthen his hand in turning around the fortunes of a nation in need of healing.
– Mpho Letlape, Interim President, IWFSA.
Note to editors:
The International Women’s Forum (IWF) is a global organisation of preeminent women of significant and diverse achievement who come together across national and international boundaries to share knowledge and ideas, enrich lives, provide a network of support and exert influence.
Furthermore, through its Leadership Foundation, the IWF helps prepare future generations of women leaders. With forums throughout North America, South America, Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East, the IWF facilitates networking among women of achievement and promotes opportunities for women in leadership. Founded in 1982 in the United States, the IWF has grown across five continents into 26 nations.