Another feather in the cap of DA’s Dr Keeka

Dr Imran Keeka has been appointed as chair of the health portfolio committee in the KwaZulu-Natal legislature. | Independent Media

Dr Imran Keeka has been appointed as chair of the health portfolio committee in the KwaZulu-Natal legislature. | Independent Media

Published Jul 10, 2024


Durban — The DA’s KwaZulu-Natal veteran legislature member, Dr Imran Keeka, has earned another feather in his cap in provincial politics.

On Tuesday, Keeka was appointed to chair the health portfolio committee while Marlaine Nair will chair the co-operative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta) portfolio committee, and Tim Brauteseth will head the standing committee on public accounts (Scopa).

In a statement, the DA said Keeka was making a return to the portfolio committee he served on from 2014 to 2019, describing him as an experienced member who returned for the third term to the legislature caucus.

Last week, the party appointed Keeka as its chief whip. Keeka rose to prominence between 2014 and 2019 while he was the DA spokesperson on health matters and a member of the Health Department portfolio committee.

He was a thorn in the flesh of former health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, whom he accused of failing to address the oncology crisis in public hospitals.

Keeka took Dhlomo to court for the death of cancer patients, which he argued, would have been avoided had the MEC ensured there were adequate oncology machines to help detect cancer in its early stages. To the surprise of many, after the 2019 general elections, he was moved to the education portfolio committee under former DA leader Zwakele Mncwango.

Born and bred in KZN, Keeka and his family currently live in Newcastle, where he first served as a DA PR councillor between 2011 and 2014, as chairperson of the Amajuba Constituency from 2012 to 2014, and where he is the current DA constituency head.

Keeka first joined the DA KZN legislature caucus in 2014 as health spokesperson before becoming DA KZN spokesperson on education in 2019, where he has worked hard to find solutions to the province’s ailing education system.

He has also served as a dedicated committee member on KZN’s public participation and petitions (PPP) portfolio committee and quality of life (women, children and people with disabilities) standing committee, the latter position being held for the past eight years.

Keeka is also a current member of the DA KZN provincial executive committee, was re-elected to serve on the DA’s Federal Council and is a member of the provincial executive and provincial disciplinary committees. He also served on the party’s technical task team set up to form a working relationship between the DA and the IFP during the last term.

Despite being a medical doctor, Keeka holds a postgraduate qualification in African Studies and Public Policy. He is also a committee member of several local Muslim organisations, on education issues.

In 2012, he was elected to represent the profession of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture at the Allied Health Professions Council of South Africa and has served on the executive committee.

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