Former GCIS DG to receive prestigious Public Service Award

The South African Association of Public Administration and Management (SAAPAM) will confer the prestigious Public Service Award to Phumla Williams and Nelisiwe Magubane for their outstanding contributions to public service in South Africa.

The award ceremony is set to take place on 28 September 2023 at the Birchwood Hotel, Ekurhuleni, during SAAPAM's 22nd annual conference.

Phumla Williams, the former Director-General of the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS), has been recognised for her exceptional leadership and dedication in promoting effective communication between government and citizens.

She holds a degree in Public Administration and a Masters in Public Administration (MPA), both from the University of South Africa.

Her additional qualifications include a certificate in public sector finance from the University of Stellenbosch.

Prior to being appointed Deputy CEO in 2009, Williams served as Director: Finance and later as Chief Financial Officer of GCIS between 1998 and 2009.

After eight years as the acting Director-General of the GCIS, Williams took over as Director-General in May 2020 after having acted in the position since 2012.

With over two decades of experience in public service, Williams has played a crucial role in enhancing transparency, ethical leadership, accountability and citizen engagement within the government.

Nelisiwe Magubane, former Director-General of the Department of Energy, will also be honoured posthumously with the Public Service Award.

Magubane, an Electrical Engineer, began her professional career at Eskom, after completing a BSc Electrical Engineering (Heavy Current) at the University of Natal in the early 1990s.

After a stint in the private sector as a consulting Electrical Engineer, she initially joined the Department of Minerals and Energy in 2000, as the Chief Director responsible for the restructuring of the electricity sector, planning and implementation of the electrification programme.

Magubane was later appointed as a Deputy Director-General responsible for the development of the policies that govern electricity, nuclear and clean energy, before her appointment as Director-General of energy in December 2009.

She oversaw the publication of the country’s inaugural Integrated Resource Plan and was also a central figure in the implementation of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which was launched in 2011, and was later held up to be one of the most successful renewables auction programmes globally.

During her tenure, Magubane spearheaded initiatives aimed at ensuring energy security and sustainability in South Africa.

Her innovative policies have significantly contributed to the country's transition towards cleaner and more renewable sources of energy.

"We are proud to recognise both Phumla Williams and the late Nelisiwe Magubane for their remarkable achievements in public service. Their unwavering commitment to excellence and their significant contributions have made a lasting impact on our nation," said SAAPAM Executive Director, Dr John Molepo, announcing the recipients of the esteemed award.

The Public Service Award is given annually by SAAPAM to individuals who have demonstrated exemplary performance and leadership qualities in advancing public administration practices in South Africa.

It serves as a recognition of their dedication towards improving governance and providing quality services to citizens.

"As South Africa continues its journey towards sustainable development and inclusive governance, the contributions of public servants like Williams and Magubane serve as an inspiration for others to follow. Their exemplary dedication and innovative approaches set a high standard for public service in the country," Molepo said. –

Source: South African Government News Agency