Change the world


Reasons to be Proud #R2bP: Nelson Mandela University’s Executive Dean of Health Sciences, Professor Zukiswa Zingela, was re-elected to the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) subsidiary bodies, in New York, earlier this month.


Prof Zingela, who is part of the category of Member States, was one of 25 candidates vying for five seats. Her nomination and re-election for another five-year term, from 2025 to 2030, was endorsed by the South African Government.

She has been a member of the INCB since 2020 through her nomination by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for the term ending in 2025.

Professor Zingela’s re-election taking into consideration her wealth of experience, including as the Second Vice President of the INCB and her academic accolades will further enhance the work of the INCB to carry out its mandate of supporting governments to meet their  commitments of ensuring the availability of controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes.

This, while preventing their diversion, including ensuring the functioning of the international system for lawful trade in controlled substances.

“The work we do in the board assists with addressing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) across a number of domains, which include promotion of healthy lives and well-being, and the revitalisation of global partnerships,” Said Prof Zingela.

“Even when we meet challenges, as board members we are always committed to collaborating to find solutions that can support and empower member states.”

The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) is an independent, quasi-judicial expert body tasked with assisting member states to comply with their obligations in terms of the three international drug control conventions, to ensure that adequate supplies of drugs are available for medical and scientific purposes whilst preventing their diversion into the illicit market.

Professor Zingela is the Executive Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences at Nelson Mandela University and the previous Head of Psychiatry and Behavioural Sciences at Nelson Mandela Academic Hospital and Walter Sisulu University.

She is a member of the Medical and Dental Board of the Health Professions Council of South Africa. She is a registered specialist psychiatrist with more than two decades of experience in the profession and a strong history of teaching, research and mentorship as well as research and leadership in the area of substance use and addictions in psychiatry. 

Prof. Zingela holds an MBChb from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, an MMed Psych from the University of Pretoria, a FCPsych from the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa and a PhD Psychology from Nelson Mandela University.

Her areas of interest and research publications include substance misuse, catatonia, traditional medicine and mental health, substance misuse and first episode psychosis, healthcare worker mental health, occupational mental health and public mental health.

She is the Second Vice-President of the INCB and Chair of the Standing Committee on Estimates. She was appointed as the board’s First Vice-President in 2022, Vice-Chairperson in 2021 and a member of the Standing Committee on Estimates in 2020. She chaired the Working Group on Availability from 2021 until 2023.

Based on a wealth of experience gained during her time on the board, the issue of ensuring adequate availability of controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes is close to her heart and something she would like to continue championing.

Another focus area which deserves special attention is that of INCB Learning, a key enabling initiative that supports capacity-building across regions and countries to empower member states and competent authorities in their work of ensuring availability for medical treatment across the globe.  

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), Dr Naledi Pandor, congratulated Prof Zingela on her re-election.

Contact information
Primarashni Gower
Director: Communication & Marketing
Tel: 0415043057