The NEPAD Agency has kicked-off the 25th African Union Summit with an award presented to former NEPAD Steering Committee member and South African Minister of Small Business Development, Ms Lindiwe Zulu, for esteemed service and leadership in promoting the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).
“We are here to honour a dear friend of NEPAD, the South African Minister of Small Business Development Ms Lindiwe Zulu, who served with distinction as Special Advisor on International Relations and Personal Representative of President Jacob Zuma to NEPAD”, NEPAD Agency CEO Dr Ibrahim Mayaki said at the 52nd NEPAD Steering Committee meeting, today, in Sandton, South Africa.
Dr Mayaki further commented that Minister Zulu is an advocate and champion of NEPAD, noting that, “while serving on the NEPAD Steering Committee she worked tirelessly in the promotion of the African Agenda, earning the respect and gratitude of her colleagues and all whose lives she touched.”
Citing a speech delivered by Minister Zulu in 2012, he stated, “the successful implementation of NEPAD must result in changes to the lives of the ordinary African people. In this regard, we must move from discussions and planning to focus on the implementation of programmes and projects.” The NEPAD CEO remarked that this was quintessential of Lindiwe Zulu, in that she has always focused on what really matters, which is making a concrete difference in the lives of the peoples of Africa.
Accepting the NEPAD Award, Minister Zulu declared “it is truly an honor to stand here today to receive this recognition.”
As Minister of Small Business Development, Ms Zulu highlighted her continued involvement in NEPAD and urged the NEPAD Agency to use its role as the implementing Agency of the African Union, to put the needs and priorities of small and medium-sized enterprises at the forefront of the AU agenda through the development of favorable policies and legislation for this sector.
Minister Zulu is a veteran of the liberation struggle, and served the African National Congress (ANC) in exile until returning to South Africa in 1991. She has served in the Gauteng Legislature, in the Department of Foreign Affairs, as well as having served as the executive head of Government and International Relations for the Vodacom group. In 2004 Ms. Zulu became the South African Ambassador to Brazil, before taking up her position as Special Advisor to the President. Minister Zulu is also an elected member of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the ANC, and was first elected to National Parliament in 2009.