Kgalema Motlanthe was born 19 July 1949 is a South African politician who served as President of South Africa between 25 September 2008 and 9 May 2009, following the resignation of Thabo Mbeki.
In the 1970s, while working for the Johannesburg City Council, he was recruited into Umkhonto we Sizwe. He formed part of a unit tasked with recruiting comrades for military training.
Motlanthe, who had maintained a low public profile, was elected to the presidency of South Africa by the South African National Assembly following the resignation of Mbeki, and was widely considered to be acting as a "caretaker president" on behalf of Zuma. Zuma succeeded Motlanthe on 9 May 2009 in a presidential election held by the South African National Assembly, following the 2009 general election which had been won by the ANC.