New governor for SA Reserve Bank

20 July 2009

South African President Jacob Zuma has appointed Absa Group chairwoman Gill Marcus to take over from Tito Mboweni as governor of the SA Reserve Bank on 9 November 2009.

Marcus, who has held a number of executive positions in the private sector, served as deputy finance minister from 1996 to 1999, and as a deputy governor of the country’s central bank from 1999 to 2004.

Mboweni, whose contract ends on 8 August, was re-appointed by the President, but he indicated that he did not want to stay on.

“As the term of office of the current governor, Mr Mboweni, is due to end on 8 August 2009, I initiated a process of consultation on the position,” Zuma said at a press briefing in Pretoria on Sunday.

“I have reappointed Mr Mboweni. However, he has indicated he wishes to leave in November to pursue other interests.”

Zuma said that, given Mboweni’s choice, he had decided to appoint Marcus as governor with effect from 9 November.

“Ms Marcus will assume responsibility for an institution that is held in high regard in South Africa and among its counterparts across the world,” Zuma said.

The primary objective of the Reserve Bank, he said, was to protect the value of South Africa’s currency in the interest of balanced and sustainable growth in the country. He added that the central bank performed its functions independently, without fear, favour or prejudice.

Zuma praised Mboweni, saying that, during his tenure, the Reserve Bank “has undertaken its constitutional mandate with diligence and prudence. It has made a critical contribution to the country’s sustained economic stability, and has persued monetary policies that have fostered economic growth.”

Zuma said he was confident that Marcus, who possessed the qualities of proven leadership, sound judgment and integrity, would be a worthy successor to Mboweni.

“Ms Marcus has extensive knowledge of the institution she is now called upon to lead, having served as deputy governor of the Reserve Bank from 1999 to 2004.”

Mboweni, who has held the position of governor for nearly 10 years, described his successor as an excellent leader who was no stranger to banking.

“It’s a very good choice, she will do a very good job,” he said.

Mboweni thanked the government for having offered him an opportunity to serve South Africa as its central bank governor. “I have enjoyed an excellent working condition with the Presidency, the former finance minister [Trevor Manuel] and the current one [Pravin Gordhan],” he said.

Source: BuaNews