Ms Nelisiwe Magubane holds a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering, and a Masters Degree in Business Administration. She is also a registered electrical engineer. Neli started her career in Eskom, the South African electricity utility. She left Eskom in 1996 to start a consulting engineering practice. In November 2000, she joined the Department of Minerals and Energy as the Chief Director responsible for the restructuring of the electricity sector, planning and implementation of the electrification programme. She was later appointed as a Deputy Director General responsible for the development of the policies that govern the electricity, nuclear and clean energy in South Africa. Her extensive engagement in the Southern African region power sector includes Cahora Bassa power system negotiations with Government of Mozambique and Government of Portugal, the Grand Inga Treaty with the Governments of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of Angola, Republic of Namibia and Republic of Botswana to name a few.
She was appointed as Director General of Energy in December 2009. She was responsible, amongst other things, for the development of the Integrated Resource Plan and guiding the improved access to electricity for over a million households in four years.
Neli has been appointed to the Board of State Information Technology Agency (SITA) as a non-executive director. She is also a member of the Thebe Energy and Resources Advisory Council, which advises Thebe Investments on energy and resources strategy.
- In 2017, Neli received a Standard Bank Top Woman Award 2017 in the Utilities Category.
- She also received the Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2017 hosted by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI). Matleng Energy Solutions received the award of Young Company of the Year 2017 hosted by AON and Consulting Engineers South Africa (CESA).
- Neli has been named one of the top 50 most influential figures in the Southern African Power sector by the ESI Africa Magazine, and is driven to apply her experience and knowledge in the energy industry to guide the development and transformation of future leaders.