Nkhen­sani Kubayi

CityPress - - News -

ANC MP Kubayi told an as­so­ciate in 2015: “I want to be Dr Kubayi by the time I turn 40. The plan is to have my PhD be­fore my 40th birth­day.”

She re­vealed that she would turn 40 this year while dis­cussing fu­ture plans with the com­rade dur­ing a tea break from a heated meet­ing of the ad hoc com­mit­tee that was prob­ing the Nkandla saga. It even­tu­ally ab­solved Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma of any li­a­bil­ity. She vig­or­ously ar­gued that Zuma had not ben­e­fited from the con­tro­ver­sial upgrades, say­ing there was no se­cu­rity, let alone com­fort, in Nkandla.

While she was crit­i­cised by Par­lia­ment ob­servers and oth­ers for her de­fence of the pres­i­dent, it was a photo of Kubayi and an­other ANC MP, Doris Dlakude, do­ing their nails dur­ing a meet­ing of the com­mit­tee that put her in the spot­light. They de­nied they were paint­ing their nails. Kubayi re­ceived her master’s de­gree last year. She has been the chair­per­son of Par­lia­ment’s telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions and postal ser­vices port­fo­lio com­mit­tee, a po­si­tion she was ap­pointed to in 2014. Her star has been ris­ing in the ANC over the past 10 years. She was an ANC coun­cil­lor (pro­por­tional rep­re­sen­ta­tive) from 2006 to 2009 in Jo­han­nes­burg, where she chaired the com­mit­tee on trans­port. She be­came an MP in 2009 and, in June 2012, she was ap­pointed as act­ing chief whip of the ANC.

“I am ner­vous, ex­cited and over­whelmed,” she told City Press on Fri­day, a few hours af­ter the news broke that she would be a Cabi­net min­is­ter.

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