Mpho Phalatse Is Johannesburg’s First Black Woman Mayor

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Mpho Phalatse made history by becoming Johannesburg’s first Black woman mayor.

The country’s new mayor managed to garner support from ActionSA and the Economic Freedom Fighters Party (EFF) without pandering. Mostly likely due to her determination to clean up Jo’burg politics.

“We need to improve collection strategies by tackling a culture of non-payment, resolving billing queries and rooting out corruption,” she says. “Joburg represents opportunity. We need to run a city that is enabling and creates a stable environment so Joburg can be a gem,” she says.

Phalatse, who grew up in what was then Bophuthatswana, adds: “Joburg is energy and diversity; there’s a rich heritage here too that needs to be nurtured so people can start enjoying it.”

Phalatse graduated from The Sefako Makgatho University and MEDUNSA where she studied to become a doctor. She also secured a degree in public health administration at the University of Witswatersrand (Wits). In 2016, she served as a full-time DA proportional representational councilor and was a mayoral committee member for health.

Mpho is also a Certified Independent Medical Examiner (CIME) with the American Board of Independent Medical Examiners (ABIME).

Stepping into her new role, Phalatse wants her constituents to know that she means business.

“I have very high standards and expectations and I work at a fast pace, so I like to surround myself with people who are the same. My critics would probably say that I expect too much or I’m too strict,” she tells the Daily Maverick, a South African publication.

Phalatse has her eye on becoming the country’s Minister of Health. Her supporters believe she has got what it takes to make it happen.

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