Mninwa Johannes Mahlangu became ambassador of South Africa to the United States of Feb. 23, 2015. Known as “MJ,” Ambassador Mahlangu’s public and political life started in the late 1960s when he was elected president of the Student Christian Movement, in then Eastern Transvaal. From 1973 to 1976, he served as assistant secretary of the Transvaal United African Teachers Association. Ambassador Mahlangu played a critical role in the processes leading up to the end of apartheid. Between 1991 and 1994, he was a negotiator at the Congress for Democratic South Africa (CODESA) and the Multiparty Negotiation Forum. In 1993, he became the co-chairperson of these bodies, and from 1993 to 1994, he was a member of South Africa’s Transitional Executive Council. After the first democratic elections in 1994, Ambassador Mahlangu joined the National Assembly in the Parliament of South Africa as a representative of the African National Congress. He became a member of the Constitutional Assembly, the body that drafted the constitution.
During his tenure with the National Assembly, he also served as chairperson of House Committees. In 2002, Ambassador Mahlangu was elected permanent deputy chairperson of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) in Parliament, becoming chairperson in 2005, a position he held until 2014. Ambassador Mahlangu has represented South Africa in many international platforms, including the United Nations and G20 Speakers Conferences. He was the leader of the South African Parliament’s delegation to the Pan-African Parliament and has served as chairperson of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (Africa region) and president of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (international).
He is married to Nomaswazi Mahlangu and they have two daughters and three sons.
Embassy of South Africa
3051 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20008
Phone: (202) 232-4400
Fax: (202) 265-1607