Kabelo Gwamanda is a 41-year-old South African politician and former businessman born in 1982. He gained notoriety in May 2023 when he was elected the mayor of Johannesburg.
Since his first day in office, the politician has been surrounded by controversy. Opposition parties have been consistently critical of him, believing him to be unfit for the role and demanding his resignation. Additionally, many people perceive him as a dishonest person because of his alleged questionable dealings with the public prior to his election.
Who Is Kabelo Gwamanda?
Kabelo Gwamanda is a South African politician and businessman who is the current executive mayor of Johannesburg, having taken office in May 2023.
He is also a former businessman and founder of the non-profit organization Ithemba Lama Afrika. Through this organization, he was involved in some business transactions that included monthly payments for funeral insurance. However, these failed.
It has been reported that the mayor has resolved the matter with his clients, although opposition parties have called for the case to be looked at again.
What Is Kabelo Gwamanda’s Age?
The mayor is 41 years old. He was born in 1982 in Soweto, a township of the City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality in Gauteng province, South Africa.
Gwamanda hails from a less advantaged background, being born into a family that had limited financial resources. Further details about his family, relatives, upbringing, and early life have not been made publicly available.
Kabelo Gwamanda’s Qualifications
Kabelo holds a National Intermediate Certificate (NIC), a level three certificate that is awarded to a student on completion of grade 10. He couldn’t further his education due to financial constraints as he had to focus on his family and other issues that mattered most then.
The mayor’s academic qualification became a subject of public interest after his election. The issue further raised more dust after his party leader, Ganief Hendricks, claimed that Kabelo had a diploma in business studies.
Gwamanda would later succumb to pressure, admitting that he had an NIC certificate only. He maintained that he never lied about his qualifications or presented a fake certificate, assuring the people of his capability to turn the city around for good despite his lack of tertiary education.
Kabelo Gwamanda’s Political Party
Johannesburg mayor Kabelo Gwamanda is currently a member of the political party Al Jama-ah. Formed in 2007 by present leader Ganief Hendricks, the party is headquartered in Cape Town and contested the 2009, 2014, and 2019 national elections.
It’s not known when exactly Kabelo joined Al-Jama-ah, but according to his Twitter, he had served as Al Jama-ah Provincial Secretary in the Gauteng region before his emergence as a mayor.
Not only that, he has also served as the secretary of the Minority Governing Parties. On May 5th, 2023, Kabelo succeeded fellow Al Jama-ah councillor Thapelo Amad as mayor of Johannesburg following his resignation due to pressure from coalition partners.
The ruling African National Congress party endorsed the Soweto-born politician for the position of mayor in order to retain its alliance with another opposition party in the council, the Economic Freedom Fighters.
Kabelo Gwamanda secured the prestigious seat following a secret ballot election held in the council on that same day. He earned 139 votes out of the 266 votes.
Is Kabelo Gwamanda a Scammer?
Kabelo Gwamanda claims he is not a scammer following an allegation of conning some residents in his hometown, Soweto, in a funeral business transaction that involved them making monthly payments for funeral insurance into iThemba Lama Africa Funeral Scheme, which failed.
“What if I am the black version of (John) Steenhuisen,” said Kwabelo Gwamanda, Johannesburg Executive Mayor when asked what is his highest level of education.
Gwamanda also said that his legal team is handling the allegations by the DA that he once ran a Ponzi scheme. TCG pic.twitter.com/jIbTaN2woz
— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) May 16, 2023
The mayor’s qualifications were yet another controversy that he faced shortly after his election. He later admitted that he had only a level three certificate awarded to a student on completion of grade 10 called the National Intermediate Certificate (NIC).