A look at those behind the scenes in the forming of AgangSA

2013-02-25 00:00

THE four people who worked with Dr Mamphela Ramphele to form AgangSA are profiled here.


Dawood is the director of communications.

She worked for a decade as a chief researcher for land rights organisation, the Surplus People Project.

Dawood joined the government after 1994 and helped draft land legislation and worked with the Department of Land Affairs and Agriculture on policy formulation and implementation, including negotiations and settlement of land claims.

She was an advisor to Cabinet ministers during the presidency of Nelson Mandela.

For the past 14 years she worked for the Open Society Foundation, which she left last November as an executive director for South Africa and Indonesia.


Professor Soko is the new party’s director of policy formulation.

Soko graduated from the University of Cape Town in 1992 and went on to work with UCT’s Equal Opportunities Research Project the following year.

He also worked for the Institute for Democracy in South Africa as a researcher on parliamentary affairs in 1995 and 1995.

In 1996, he joined the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) as a researcher and later became head of its policy and legislative research.

Soko is currently an associate professor of international political economy at the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business.

He is also the founding director of the Cape Town-based Mthente Research and Consulting Services.


Allen serves as a strategic director advising Dr Mamphela Ramphele and her executive team.

Allen began his career as a journalist, joining Johannesburg-based the Star as a cadet journalist at the age of 18 in 1971.

After working for the South African Press Association and serving as a national organiser for the defunct South African Union of Journalists, he served as media secretary to Archbishop Desmond Tutu in 1987.

He was later appointed as media liaison director for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission between 1996 and 1998.

Allen was also the media liaison director in Tutu’s office when the archbishop was on a sabbatical at Emory University, Atlanta, U.S. between 1998 and 2000.

He has served as a director of communications for the Parish of Trinity Church in New York between 2000 and 2004.

He returned to South Africa in 2004 to write Tutu’s biography and joined allAfrica.com (an African news website), first as managing editor and later as executive editor.


Knapp, a Canadian citizen married to a South African, is the chief of staff at AgangSA.

Before joining AgangSA, Knapp was an associate partner with McKinsey & Company based in Johannesburg.

Prior to working for McKinsey, Knapp worked at Barrick Gold Corporation, a Canadian mining company.

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