Colleen Makhubele
Colleen Makhubele

Cope mayoral candidate targets Joburg

By Ntombi Nkosi Time of article published Sep 28, 2021

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COPE Johannesburg mayoral candidate Colleen Makhubele said she appreciates the party for having confidence in her to be given a chance to run the city of gold.

“Cope is on a drive for self-renewal, they are recruiting professionals who have skills fit for purpose to run municipalities to go and turn things around, they are not looking at a membership card, loyalty and favours. I started working with Cope early this year in my portfolio at the City of Joburg and I have found the spirit and ethics so loud and clear,” said Makhubele.

Johannesburg has over the years seen problems such as faulty billing system, potholes, power and water cuts, unemployment and shortage of houses, she said

As a mayor, Makhubele said looking at their manifesto, they are going to serve the people and grow an inclusive economy.

“Everything that we are going to do will hang on an inclusive economy that will support SMMEs, small businesses, large corporations, multinationals that will come and help us rebuild Johannesburg. Out of that we are able to sort out the water issues.

“We know there are electricity problems. It is one of the issues that we want to sort out as soon as possible. There is no reason why we don’t have electricity in Johannesburg. City Power should work, if they open up to people that have the right technologies to come in and support us, there are people that are willing to fund and partner with the city , they will build new substations, will partner with SMMEs, create jobs in the communities and get our revenue through different avenues over a long period of time,” Makhubele said.

She said the current type of leadership is still stuck in a tender process, they can’t see these small opportunities that are big spin-offs.

“As Cope we are saying the focus of this inclusive economy is to address service delivery immediately and we are going to address it cheaply, efficiently and inclusive of SMMEs, corporates, international local and communities, creating jobs because that is what we need. We are going to drive the smart city agenda, if we are going to provide sustainable electricity there are technologies that are proven to be cheap, why are we not using those technologies for smart grids, etc to make sure we provide electricity to communities,” she said.

Makhubele, originally from Giyani in Limpopo, a wife and a mother of two sons, said she brings a wealth of corporate experience, an entrepreneurial spirit and solid ideas to develop the city of Joburg to benefit all residents.

She has an information technology engineering Honours degree from Malaysia, an MBA from Milpark Business School as well as Chartered Financial Analyst and Investment Foundation certificates.

She is doing her PhD on management of innovation and technology with the Da Vinci Institute.

Makhubele is one of the founding members of Mzumbe Group of Companies and was the chief executive officer overseeing the company portfolios in ICT, energy and manufacturing. She also served as both chairperson and non-executive director of the South African Post Office.

Makhubele acknowledged that moving from corporate to politics is a courageous and bold step for her.

“I feel we have come to a point as a city and as a country where we have watched the older generation of politicians make promises not being able to meet them, they are facing their own challenges of infighting and they are facing challenges of corruption, we can name it. I feel like they have lost touch or empathy of what is needed to be able to serve people,” she said.

Makhubele said being in this modern generation and the background she has in ICT, and as the world is in the 21st century, the fourth industrial revolution (4IR), she said things have to be done differently.

She said to grow the economy digitally is not the same as when they were growing it 30 years ago industrially, it needs fresh thinking, fresh leadership.

“Our youth need new role models and they need people who will come in and say they want to serve. We are professionals, we have been in the corporate space, we have run businesses, we have interacted with the government from this side and we know the pain and frustration and we also understand from our experience and qualifications how things could run that side to better serve and benefit both the government and the citizens. I feel I have got a lot that I can give from my experience, I can contribute to the plight of women whether it is through GBV, encouraging girls to go to different careers just to give them courage and hope that,” she said.

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