Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu has confirmed the appointment of Dr Sam Makhudu Gulube as the new Secretary for Defence with immediate effect. She made the announcement in a statement late yesterday.
Sisulu “takes pleasure in announcing the appointment of … Gulube as the new Secretary for Defence with immediate effect,” the statement said. “Dr Gulube is eminently qualified both as a medical practitioner and a seasoned soldier.”
Sisulu’s statement noted Gulube is a graduate of Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia. “Dr Gulube worked in tele-medicine and this stimulated his interest in Information Technology as a viable tool to improve quality and equity in healthcare services.
“Throughout his illustrious career – as African National Congress Deputy Representative to the United Nations, Chairperson of the Presidential National Commission on Information Society and Development; member of the Business Advisory Council of the United Nations Office for Project Services, and recently, as Advisor to the Minister of State Security. He has developed his conception of public service and its applications. [sic]
“His hard work as a medical practitioner and executive in government and professional agencies has earned him the respect of his colleagues and peers,” the statement added.
A statement issued last Thursday after a routine Cabinet meeting announced Gulube will serve as director general in the Department of Defence for five years. He replaces Mpumi Mpofu who resigned in mid-October.
Gulube was previously also National Medical Director of the South African National Blood Services (SANBS), served in the Military Health Service and currently sits on Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu’s Defence Review committee (DRC).
After completing his medical studies he did his General Surgery Residency Program at the University of South Florida in Tampa Florida from 1991 to 1996. In 1997 he was appointed a lieutenant colonel in the South African Military Health Services and served as General Surgery Principal Medical Officer at 1 Military Hospital in Pretoria. He led later the SAMHS’ Telemedicine project.
From the year 2000 to 2003 he was Director of the National Telemedicine Research Centre at the Medical Research Council (MRC) of South Africa. He served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Universal Service Agency of South Africa from April 2003 to April 2006. He joined the SANBS in May 2006.
He has also been chairman of the Presidential Medical Team, a Trustee of the SA Red Cross Air Mercy Service and a member of the Business Advisory Council of the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and chairman of Medical Education for South African Blacks (MESAB) South Africa Trustees. He has also acted as advisor to Minister of State Security Siyabonga Cwele.
Gulube was appointed chairman of the Resource Group within the DRC in August.