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Impeccable public servant Coceko Pakade passes on
By Moabi Pitsi
Coceko Pakade, a former CEO of the South African Social Agency, passed on on Friday, December 04. In his impeccable track record in the public service, Pakade can be credited for being the only public servant to have served as the CEO of the National Development Agency, Independent Development Trust, National Development Agency and Chief Financial Officer and Director General of the National Department of Social Development.
His career, spanning over a quality 20 years in the public service, has been described by his peers as themed with ethical and uncompromising integrity. It was when Pakade was the Chief Financial Officer of the national Department of Social Development, that his strategic prowess and foresight laid the first foundation for the now largely successful South African Social Security Agency. He served as Chief Financial Officer for the Department of Social Development from May 2001 – April 2013 and later as Director-General. His stint as Acting CEO of SASSA from July 2009 – May 2011 cemented social assistance as government’s most effective anti-poverty strategy.
Humble in his greatness, Pakade inspired the modern day servant leadership spearheaded by the then Minister of Social Development, Zola Skweyiya, in early mid 2000s. His understanding of the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment placed him as one of the most astute development-minded financial and strategic leaders in the public service. He was warm and down to earth in demeanor, approachable yet decisive at defining moments.
May his family and friends be comforted, while we acknowledge his great contribution to a better life for all, especially the poor and vulnerable through his public service.