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Elizabeth Dipuo Peters, born on 13 May 1960, is the Minister of Energy of the Republic of South Africa (from 11 May 2009), in the Zuma administration, having served as successor to Manne Dipico as the second Premier of the Northern Cape Province, 22 April 2004 to 10 May 2009. A member of the African National Congress (ANC), she is on the Women's League National Executive Committee.[1]


Peters went to school at Tidimalo Junior Secondary and Tshireleco Senior Secondary in Kimberley. She subsequently studied for a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work from the University of the North (1987). She subsequently studied for a Certificate in Development and Public Policy from the University of the Western Cape (1996); a Certificate in Executive Management from the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business (2002); and a Certificate in International Policy Management, from Havana, Cuba (2002).[2]

Political career

Dipuo Peters joined the Young Christian Students, where her political activism began. She participated in in Youth Formations in the church and community. She was Deputy Chairperson of the Women's Forum in AZASO which later became SASCO at the University of the North. In Kimberley she was a member of the Galeshewe Youth Congress, an affiliate of the United Democratic Front (UDF). She worked as a volunteer regional organiser for the South African Domestic Worker's Union, recruiting, organising, educating and counseling domestic workers in the Northern Cape (1987). From 1987 to 1990 Peters was Head of the Women's Department at the South African Youth Congress. In 1990 she joined the African National Congress Youth League as the secretary for Women’s Affairs, having been Woman Organiser of the National Executive Council (NEC) of South African Youth Congress (SAYCO), 1987 to 1990.[3]

Other positions include:.[4]

  • Member of the Northern Cape Provincial National Youth Committee (PNYC) (1990 - 1991).
  • Worked as a social worker for the NCCR, tasks included liaising with other organizations on behalf of the Committee in the Northern Cape, administering grants for the disabled, aged and un-accompanied minors, and proposing and implementing service plans for the individuals and groups of returnees (1992 - 1994).
  • Worked for NCCR, a United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) structure which worked for the repatriation of political exiles and re-integration of political prisoners after the unbanning of political organisations.
  • Member of Parliament (National Assembly) and was responsible for the Northern Cape and ANC membership/Caucus Register (1994 - 1997).
  • Member of Provincial Executive of the ANC in the Northern Cape (1996).
  • Member of the Portfolio Committees on Home Affairs, Public Works, Social Services and Health.
  • ANC Chief Whip in the Northern Cape Provincial Legislature (1997 - 1999).
  • ANC's Treasurer for the Northern Cape Province (1997 - 2003).
  • Member of Executive Council (MEC) for Health (1999 - 2004).
  • Provincial Deputy Chairperson of ANC (May - December 2003).
  • Member of the ANC Women's League National Executive Committee (2002 - 2003).
  • Deputy Chairperson of the ANC in the Northern Cape, and later acting Provincial Chairperson (2004).
  • Member of ANC National Executive Committee (1998 - 2007).
  • Provincial Chairperson of the African National Congress (ANC)(December 2003 - December 2007).


Political offices
Preceded by
Manne Dipico
Premier of the Northern Cape
11 May 1998 – 6 May 2009
Succeeded by
Hazel Jenkins
Preceded by
Buyelwa Sonjica
as Minister of Minerals and Energy
Minister of Energy
2009 – present


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