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New African’s Most Influential Africans of 2014 Includes a Pride of South Africans

Most Influential Africans 2014 according to New African

New African, an international magazine focused on bringing news and stories from the African continent and the African diaspora to the world, has announced its list of the Most Influential Africans of 2014.

In the introduction, the editors note that the list reflects the 100 Africans who, in their opinion, have made the biggest impact on the world this year – albeit negative in some cases:

Some may be part of an old guard that just never tires. Some may be children of the future with footprints deeper and weightier than their years. And some you may never have even heard of as they’ve been innovating, creating and debating behind the scenes. But without exception, and in their own way, the people we have chosen – our most influential Africans of 2014 – have left the world a little different this year.

Without further ado, here are the South Africans included in New African’s list of influential figures:

Politics and Public Office:

Deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, former president Thabo Mbeki, Economic Freedom Fighter Julius Malema, public protector Thuli Madonsela, chairperson of the African Union Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Johannesburg High Court judge Thokozile Masipa (who sentenced Oscar Pistorius), and recently retired United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay.

Business and Economy:

Space-travelling businessman Mark Shuttleworth, mining tycoon Bridgette Radebe, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) CEO Elon Musk, Johannesburg Stock Exchange CEA Nicky Newton-King, finance minister turned private advisor Trevor Manuel, Glencore Xstrata CEO Ivan Glasenberg, and Smile Telecoms CEO Irene Charnley.

Civil Society and Activism:

International executive director of Greenpeace Kumi Naidoo, AMCU head Joseph Mathunjwa, Chair of the Board of Directors Partnership Council of GAIN Jay Naidoo, and NUMSA secretary general Irvin Jim.

Religion and Tradition:

Archbishop emeritus Desmond Tutu.

Science and Academia:

Astrophysicist and founding director of Astronomy Africa Thebe Medupe, and epidemiologist and leader in HIV and AIDS research Quarraisha Abdool Karim.


Talk radio queen Redi Tlhabi, straight-talking puppet Chester Missing, political cartoonist Zapiro, global news reporter Thabang Motsei, Daily Maverick editor Branko Brkic, and City Press editor Ferial Haffajee.

Arts and Culture:

King of comedy Trevor Noah, playwright Athol Fugard, township tech pioneer Spoek Mathambo, award-winning fashion designer David Tlale, house music duo Mafikizolo, and living legend of Afro-jazz Hugh Masekela.


South Africa’s first non-white Protea cricket captain Hashim Amla.

New African has also included many notable African authors on their latest list of Most Influential Africans: Binyavanga Wainaina, NoViolet Bulawayo, Wole Soyinka, Fatou Diome, Teju Cole, Yvonne Owuor and Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o – all writers who, in their own right, have made a lasting impact on the world in 2014.

To discover more about these inspiring people, have a look at Books LIVE’s selection of book on or by those included on the list:

Cyril RamaphosaThabo Mbeki and the Battle for the Soul of the ANCThe Coming RevolutionTrevor Manuel21 IconsFighting for JusticeMetal That Will Not BendThe Book of ForgivingEndings and BeginningsChester Missing's Guide to the Elections '14It's Code Red!Brain PornMy Children! My Africa!Still GrazingOne Day I Will Write About This PlaceWe Need New NamesForest of a Thousand DaemonsCelles Qui AttendentEvery Day is for the ThiefIn the House of the InterpreterInspired

Book details

  • The Book of Forgiving: The Four-Fold Path of Healing For Ourselves and Our World by Desmond Tutu, Mpho Tutu
    EAN: 9780007512881
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

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