City of Johannesburg appoints new mayor in wake of Makhubo’s death

10th August 2021 By: Donna Slater - Creamer Media Contributing Editor and Photographer

Following the death of City of Johannesburg Mayor Geoff Makhubo on July 9, an extraordinary council meeting on August 10 resulted in Councillor Jolidee Matongo being elected as the new executive mayor.

Matongo, who is the former Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) for Finance in the current term of office, takes over for the remainder of the term held by Makhubo.

Makhubo died from Covid-19-related complications.

Matongo, a resident of Lenasia, is expected to announce members of his Mayoral Committee on August 11.

He is a seasoned politician, holding various qualifications that include a B-Tech degree in public management, project management and quality assurance, as well as public management and development certificates.

Matongo is also currently pursuing a master’s degree in public administration.

Born in Soweto and having grown up on the streets of Dube, he took up political activism at the age of 13, subsequently joining the Soweto Students Congress and the Congress of South African Students, which Matongo served in various capacities, respectively.

He grew through the ranks as a youth activist until he became a member of the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League, wherein he served as a regional secretary. Matongo was later elected the regional chairperson in the greater Johannesburg region.

Further, he also served as a member of the Johannesburg ANC regional executive committee for 18 years, wherein he was the region’s head of media and communications, as well as being elected the region’s spokesperson for two consecutive terms.

Having formally joined the public service just over a decade ago, Matongo was first appointed an operations manager in the housing department of the City of Johannesburg.

He later became the city’s deputy director of youth development – a function that prompted the municipality to prioritise programmes that were directed particularly at youth inclusion and empowerment.

He went on to become a councillor in the Johannesburg Council ahead of his appointment by Makhubo as Finance MMC in December 2019.