Councilor Nonceba Molwele was born from a Gcaleka couple in Bridgeman, Johannesburg and grew up in Mzimkhulu, a former Eastern Cape Border. She matriculated there before returning to Johannesburg in 1985 to stay with her domestic worker mother in Newlands. Inspired by her maternal grandfather who was an active member of the Poqo group, a military wing of the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC), as well as her mother who was active in ANC veteran’s local structures until her death 2001, she also joined political activists in their various campaigns. She later served in various structures of both the African National Congress (ANC) and the South African National Civics Organisation (SANCO) from branch to regional level. Molwele’s activism became more intense when she took up employment at Checker’s grocery stores in the late 1980s where she served as a shop steward of the South African Commercial Catering and Allied Workers Union (SACCAWU).
She served the union for five terms. This did not go well with her mother’s employers who labelled her “a communist” and chased her away from their Newlands home. She later set up home at Meadowlands, Soweto, in the early 1990’s and joined the ANC and the then Soweto Civic Association (SCA). Always targeting to operate at the level of the masses, Molwele became a deputy secretary and later rose to a fully-fledged secretarial position of the civic movement in the Meadowlands branch. She also served as deputy secretary of the ANC and the ANC Women’s League at branch level, member and deputy secretary of the ANC Johannesburg region. After the 2000 local government elections, she became a PR councillor whilst still working full time for Woolworths as a Financial Manager. In 2006, because of her passion to serve the community and improve the quality of lives of ordinary people, Councillor Molwele resigned from Woolworths. She continues to play a critical role in strengthening the ANC’s political work at community level. Molwele was the first female councillor to be appointed Chief Whip of Council in the City of Johannesburg, since the dawn of democracy. Before her appointment as Chief Whip of Council, she served as Chairperson of the Infrastructure and Services section 79 – portfolio committee in the City of Johannesburg. She also served as the Chairperson of chairpersons of section 79 committees in the City. Furthermore, she served as the SALGA chairperson of the Provincial Infrastructure and Services Sub-Committee. Molwele is married and raising two daughters and one granddaughter. She resides in Ward 48 at Region D, Soweto. Besides numerous courses undertaken at workplace, both in the private sector and municipality, she is now in her second level of a Degree in Financial Management (BCom) with the University of South Africa (UNISA). She also obtained various certificates from different institutions. She has a certificate in Municipal Governance from the University of Johannesburg, a certificate in Municipal Financial Management from University of Pretoria and a certificate in Management & Development for Municipal Finance from Wits Business School.