Gulube named a senior fellow at National School of Government


An indication of the esteem he is held in by former colleagues in the public service is this week’s announcement of Sam Gulube, until August Secretary for Defence, as an inaugural senior fellow of the National School of Government (NSG).

The medical doctor turned government mandarin joins Cassius Lubisi and Nosipho Ngcaba in becoming the first three “eminent and former senior public servants” to be named senior fellows of the institution by Public Service and Administration Minister Senzo Mchunu.

The NSG is a government training institution tasked with building public sector capacity to implement government’s developmental agenda. The establishment of the NSG is premised on a capable public service as a necessary condition for society to flourish, realising sustainable development outcomes, according to the school’s website.

“This is in line with the Constitution, which calls for public administration to promote progressive realisation of human rights under a public administration dispensation governed by democratic values and principles of development.

“The NSG is at the forefront of this responsibility. The NSG’s main focus is to build capacity of the state across all three spheres of government. In addition to domestic obligations, the NSG works with similar institutions in Africa and worldwide to promote democratic governance and development of the public sector on the African continent.

“The NSG responds to the dictates of the South African Constitution, the National Development Plan, AU Agenda 2063 and UN Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development as far as building capable and well-governed institutions is concerned.”

A government statement has it that “A US-trained surgeon, Dr Gulube served as Secretary for Defence from 2011 until August 2020. As Secretary for Defence, he was accounting officer for the Department of Defence and principal advisor to Minister of Defence and Military Veterans on defence policy matters. He previously served as advisor to the Minister of State Security, chief executive of the Universal Service Agency of South Africa and director of the National Telemedicine Research Centre at the SA Medical Research Council.

“He was part of the nerve centre of the country’s national COVID-19 response in his capacity as co-chair (with Dr Lubisi) of the National Joint Command Centre which provided technical support to the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) on the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Being an NSG senior fellow means serving South Africa toward “building a virtuous, capable and development orientated public administration”.

In a published interview soon after he vacated his office in the Armscor building, Gulube spoke on the importance of the public sector.

“The public service renders service to others. As in any other sector, you will have a few individuals who tarnish the image of the public service.

“The public service are the unsung heroes of our democracy because the majority of public servants are committed, dedicated and aware their salaries and working conditions might not be as good as in the private sector, but they are in the public service to serve other people,” public servant with 44 years of service on his personnel record said.