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Charles Nqakula (born September 13, 1942) is a South African politician who has been Minister of Defence since September 2008. He was Minister of Safety and Security from May 2002 to September 2008. Tipped as a contender for the future presidency of South Africa, he is concurrently national chairperson of the South African Communist Party (SACP). Nqakula is married to the Minister of Correctional services, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.