Major General Jackie Sedibe – South Africa
Born Major General Refiloe Phelile Florence Jackie Sedibe in South Africa; she began her career at the age of eight, by distributing Africa National Congress leaflets. In 1961, she joined the military branch of the ANC – a guerilla organization. In 1964 when she reached her 17th birthday, Major General Sedibe was assigned as a signals operator specializing in clandestine radio operations. In the latter part of 1964 she was sent to the Soviet Union for training at the Odessa Infantry Academy; being one of three women to be selected to join the program. Between 1976 to 1977, she assisted Zambian officials with processing new recruits from South Africa and Zambia. From 1976 to 1980 she served at the Mkhonto we Sizwe (MK) central operations headquarters. In 1984 was selected for ANC’s National Executive Committee (NEC).
In 1990 Major General Sedibe joined the ANC headquarters as the communications head for the military branch. In 1994, she was a member of a select group of MK members to be integrated into the South African military. Subsequently, Sedibe served in the Office of the inspector general focusing on the interests of women in the South African National Defence Force (SANDF). Also in 1994, she participated in operations for the Transitional Executive Council and on a sub-council on defence in proceedings of the Joint Military Coordinating Council. In 1996, Sedibe was promoted to the rank of Major General and earned the title of chief director of corporate communications. In 1997, she was chosen as chief director of equal opportunities in the SANDF. Sedibe continues to serve in the SANDF.