Fikile Mbalula

Fikile April Mbalula (born 8 April 1971[1] in the Free State) is a South African politician who is currently serving as Minister of Transport. He previously served as both Minister and Deputy Minister of Police and Minister of Sports and Recreation. Mbalula is a member of the National Executive Committee of the African National Congress and former leader of the African National Congress Youth League. He is ethnically a Mpondomise, his clan name is Jola.[2]

Fikile Mbalula

Minister of Transport
Assumed office
30 May 2019
PresidentCyril Ramaphosa
Preceded byBlade Nzimande
Minister of Police
In office
31 March 2017 – 26 February 2018
PresidentJacob Zuma
Preceded byNkosinathi Nhleko
Succeeded byBheki Cele
Minister of Sport and Recreation
In office
1 November 2010 – 31 March 2017
PresidentJacob Zuma
Preceded byMakhenkesi Stofile
Succeeded byThembelani Nxesi
Personal details
Born (1971-04-08) 8 April 1971 (age 50)
Botshabelo, Free State
Political partyAfrican National Congress


Mbalula was appointed Deputy Minister of Police in the cabinet of Jacob Zuma in May 2009 and later became the Minister of Sport and Recreation after President Jacob Zuma changed his cabinet. On 31 March 2017, following a controversial reshuffling in the cabinet, Mbalula was appointed as Minister of Police taking over from Nathi Nhleko[3] after lobbying from the ANC Youth League[4][5] and possibly as a reward for loyalty towards Zuma,[6] according to media speculation.

In the 2009 general elections he was the manager of the ANC election campaign, which was considered highly successful.[7]

Mbalula was elected to the ANC NEC at the party's Polokwane conference in December 2007 in 15th place, measured in the number of votes.[8] He subsequently retired as president of the ANC Youth League of which, at age 36, he was no longer eligible to be a member.[9]

Mbalula was elected president of the ANC Youth League in August 2004, having previously held the post of secretary general.[10]

Mbalula has been credited with installing South African President Thabo Mbeki in that position, and for later deposing him as head of the ANC.[11] His support has also been described as key in gaining Zuma the ANC presidency in a hard-fought race with Mbeki.[12]

He also supported the candidacy of Julius Malema to succeed him as head of the Youth League in what was seen as a move to ensure continuing League support for Zuma.[13]

In May 2019, President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed Mbalula to the post of Minister of Transport, succeeding Blade Nzimande.[14]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-08-04. Retrieved 2012-11-12.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ Sowetan Live (2008). "Mbalula goes to the mountain". Retrieved 6 April 2021.
  3. ^ New Cabinet – full appointments Archived May 12, 2009, at the Wayback Machine News24
  4. ^ ANCYL wants its cadres in top posts[permanent dead link] Sowetan
  5. ^ Speculation about Zuma's cabinet News24
  6. ^ Zuma's Cabinet: Who's in? News24
  7. ^ Slick party machinery wins the day Business Day
  8. ^ Meet Jacob Zuma's A-team IOL
  9. ^ ANCYL president to retire at 36 News24
  10. ^ ANC Youth League calls on members to put country first SABC
  11. ^ Zuma's NWC vs Mbeki's cabinet Independent Online
  12. ^ Zuma backers urge new direction
  13. ^ Malema elected as new ANCYL leader Mail & Guardian
  14. ^ New Minister of Transport: What should Fikile Mbalula focus on to improve road safety?. Retrieved on 11 June 2019.

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