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This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

Gordhan, Pravin Jamnadas

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Pravin Gordhan was born in Durban, South Africa on 12 April 1949 and matriculated from Sastri College in Durban in 1967. In 1973 he graduated from the University for Durban-Westville with a Bachelor of Pharmacy degree. In 1971 Gordhan became associated with members of the Natal Indian Congress (NIC) and was elected to its executive council in 1974.

During the 1970s, Gordhan helped establish grassroots organisations, became involved in underground activities and became associated with the African National Congress (ANC) and later the South African Communist Party (SACP).

In 1974 he completed his pharmacy internship at King Edward VIII Hospital. He worked there until 1981 when the Natal Provincial Administration dismissed him for his political activities while he was in detention. He was released from jail in 1982 and received banning orders effective until June 1983. Gordhan attended the launch of the United Democratic Front (UDF) in Cape Town 1983 and the NIC became an affiliated organisation.

He worked as a volunteer for the NIC's anti-tricameral parliament campaign in 1984 and was arrested with other leaders of the NIC a week before the elections. He was detained in Durban in 1985 in terms of Section 29 of the Internal Security Act. In 1986 he was forced to go underground and remained in hiding until his arrest in 1990, when he was named as a key figure in the ANC underground network, Operation Vula. In 1991 he was granted indemnity.

Gordhan attended the preparatory meeting for the Convention of a Democratic South Africa (CODESA) in 1991 as a joint NIC/Transvaal Indian Congress (TIC) representative, and was appointed NIC/TIC delegate to the steering committee responsible for organising Codesa 1, which became the management committee after CODESA 1. In 1993 he was appointed to the panel of chairpersons on the planning committee of the multi-party negotiation process.

Gordhan became member of parliament for the ANC in 1994. He was also a member of the Constitutional Committee of the Constituent Assembly and was elected to the SACP's central committee.

He serves as Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) in post-apartheid South Africa.

Source: Gastrow, S. 1995. Who's Who in South African Politics, Number 5. Ravan Press: Johannesburg.

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.