Magubane’s impressive career has involved holding influential senior positions in wide-ranging aspects of South Africa’s energy sector, including being appointed as the first Director General of the Department of Energy (DoE) in 2009, when the Department was split from the former Department of Minerals and Energy (DME). Some of her key achievements during her term of office at the DoE included the development of the Integrated Resource Plan, which improved access to electricity for over a million households, and the internationally acclaimed Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPPP).
Albert Geldenhuys, Managing Director of Aurecon RSA, comments that: “Aurecon is privileged to welcome Neli to the Board of Directors of Aurecon South Africa. As a Professional Engineer with over 24 years’ experience in the energy sector, we are confident that she will be an invaluable asset to our company.”
Magubane obtained a B.Sc in Heavy Current Electrical Engineering from the University of Natal and an MBA from the Milpark Business School. Her career in engineering started at Eskom and, in 1996, she became the founder and Managing Director of Magubane Isibonelo Projects in KwaZulu-Natal.
In 2000, Magubane was appointed as Chief Director ‒ Electricity for the DME, where she was instrumental in developing the electricity pricing policy and the electricity supply industry reform strategy. In 2002, as Deputy Director General for Electricity & Nuclear Energy, Magubane established legislation to create NERSA, the National Energy Regulator of South Africa, responsible for the regulation of the petroleum, gas and electricity sector. She also spearheaded negotiations between southern African countries on a hydroelectric power project and electricity tariffs.
A member of the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) and Chairperson of the Council’s Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee, Magubane has also held non-executive directorships with the National Electricity Regulator, Electricity Distribution Industry Holdings (Pty) Ltd, and the South African National Energy Research Institute (Pty) Ltd. She has been named as one of the top 50 most influential figures in the southern African power sector by ESI Africa Magazine.
“I am excited about my new appointment at Aurecon and I look forward to playing a key role in the company’s strategy within the engineering and electricity markets,” comments Magubane.
“Energy consumption and conservation are at the forefront of the sustainability challenge, which is a strong focus for many of Aurecon’s clients. I am confident that Neli’s experience and understanding of the local business environment, especially the energy sector, combined with her knowledge of the sub-Saharan Africa electricity networks, will strongly contribute to our leadership team in the country,” concludes Geldenhuys.
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