Trudi Makhaya in Ramaphosa's A-team

Trudi Makhaya
Trudi Makhaya

President Cyril Ramaphosa has this week appointed the youngest economic adviser in the history of the highest office in the land.

According to her bio, Trudi Makhaya, 40, from Leboneng in Hammanskraal, is a writer, economist and entrepreneur. She has one child.

Makhaya holds an MBA and an MSc in development economics from Oxford University, where she studied as a Rhodes Scholar.

She further holds an MCom in economics, Honours degree in economics and a BCom in law and economics. In 2015, she founded an advisory firm focused on competition policy and entrepreneurship.

Makhaya has a bag of experience as she has served as an adviser and angel investor in young companies. She has held nonexecutive directorships at Vumelana Advisory Fund and MTN South Africa.

She was also the principal economist and a member of the executive committee at the Competition Commission of South Africa from 2010 to 2014, assessing mergers and acquisitions, analysing complex competition enforcement cases and appearing as an expert witness at the Competition Tribunal.

Makhaya has also held various management, consulting and corporate roles at Deloitte South Africa, Genesis Analytics and AngloGold Ashanti.

While Ramaphosa did not outline Makhaya's full responsibility at the media conference on Monday night, one of her immediate orders would be to coordinate the work of the newly appointed president's special envoys on investment as they crisscross the globe in a bid to lure billions of new foreign direct investment into the South African economy over the next five years.

Ramaphosa has appointed former finance minister Trevor Manuel, former deputy minister of finance Mcebisi Jonas, executive chairperson of Afropulse Group Phumzile Langeni, and chairman of Liberty Group Jacko Maree, as the president's special envoys on investment.