Get to know Mpho Phalatse

Mpho spent her first years living with her grandmother in Hebron, near Tshwane, before joining her parents in Mabopane.

Born to two parents who were both educators, hard work and excellence were instilled in Mpho at a very young age. She matriculated in 1994, and subsequently secured admission at the University of Witswatersrand (Wits) to study Chemical Engineering in 1995. However, after much self-reflection and a desire to focus on a career that was more people oriented, during her second years at Wits, Mpho started her journey towards becoming a doctor at the Sefako Makgatho University and MEDUNSA.

In 2005, Mpho became qualified as a medical doctor and started an internship at Tembisa Hospital. This was followed by community service in Hammanskraal, where she offered services at Jubilee Hospital as well as various clinics within the area.

During her community service year, Mpho enrolled for project Management Studies through Cranefield College and now holds an advanced diploma and postgraduate diploma in Project Management and Programme Management.

Mpho is also a Certified Independent Medical Examiner (CIME) with the American Board of Independent Medical Examiners (ABIME).

Mpho spent the next six years of her career exploring service delivery models in different contexts such as mining houses, and proceeded to register her own company, rendering disability consulting services to SASSA in both Gauteng and the North-West.

Seeing abject poverty in underdeveloped villages in the North-West drove Mpho to suspend her business and return to Gauteng to acquire further skills, registering for an MMed in Public Health Medicine at Wits University in 2011 – a move which would see her settling in the City of Johannesburg.

Mpho went on to work as a casualty officer at the Alexandra Community Health Centre, and as a sexual assault care practitioner at the Far East Rand Hospital in Springs, while also serving on the Professional Conduct Committee of the Health Professions Council of South Africa.

In the week that she was appointed MMC Health and Social Development, she was also appointed as a Medical Advisor in the Compensation Commission, an appointment which she had to turn down to serve the people of Johannesburg.

Mpho’s pull to politics came at the Alex Clinic where the living conditions of the community translated into ongoing public health challenges in a vicious cycle which required principled government leadership.

Mpho went on become a DA PR councillor in Johannesburg with the aim of contributing towards the repair and restoration of Alex Township with the intention of re-establishing her business, but subsequently gave it all up when she was asked to serve as the member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) for Health and Social Development.

As MMC, Mpho championed the extension of service hours in clinics, as well as the City’s multipronged substance abuse prevention and treatment strategy, among many other achievements.

Mpho is currently serving as a PR councillor and a member of the DA caucus in Johannesburg.

She’s a single mother of three children, aged five, eleven and eighteen, and enjoys spending time with family and friends, walking, taking long drives, and hiking in serene contexts for quiet meditation.

During the lockdown she started a career in corporate coaching through the Global Institute for Organizational Coaching – a skill she has been using to mentor and coach young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Her favourite foods include chicken ‘hardbody’ with ‘bogobe ba ting’ (brown, sour pap), chicken livers and garlic prawns.

Mpho’s favourite artist is Ella Fitzgerald, and her favourite book is the Holy Bible.