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Chinese politician emerges member of South African parliament

The Chinese-born legislator has lived in South Africa since 1994 and married her partner, who is a South African national.

• January 31, 2021
Xiaomei Havard
Xiaomei Havard

Xiaomei Havard, a Chinese-born South African businesswoman and politician from Gauteng, has emerged as a member of parliament for the African National Congress (ANC).

The ANC Saturday defended its decision to select Mrs. Havard as a member of parliament, noting that the country is “non-racial” and “non-sexist.”

ANC Chief Whip, Pemmy Majodina, disclosed that Havard is a trained ICT professional, a computer scientist and a philanthropist with a PhD.
Ms. Majodina stated that the Chinese-born legislator has lived in South Africa since 1994 and married her partner, who is a South African national and qualifies for citizenship in accordance with the law.

“In May 2019, she stood for elections on an ANC ticket, having gone through a national list process and emerged as candidate 130 on the ANC national list as verified by the Independent Electoral Commission,” the ANC Chief Whip said.

“Her party, the ANC included her name in the national list and her appointment meets Constitutional muster and is allowed,’’ she added, while stressing that Mrs. Havard has been a 15-year supporter of the ANC. 

The biracial politician was sworn in as a member of parliament this week to replace Jackson Mthembu, who died from COVID-19-related complications on January 21.

Her selection by the ANC has generated mixed feelings amongst South Africans.

The ruling party, nonetheless, insists that South Africa abhors all forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.

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