Finance Minister Trevor Manuel (52) and his sweetheart Maria Ramos (49) got married on Saturday, Manuel’s spokeswoman Thoraya Panday has confirmed.
Ramos, former director general of finance and current CE of Transnet, recently accepted the post of CE of banking group Absa.
Manuel and his first wife were divorced in a secretive hearing in the Cape High Court late last year.
He and Ramos have been seen together in public on a number of occasions, most recently the Cape Town launch of his biography “Choice, Not Fate”. The couple allegedly started their relationship when Ramos was director-general in the National Treasury.
They have made no secret of their fondness for each other . At a press briefing in 2005, at Sars’s Carlton Centre office where Manuel was to hand in his tax return, journalists were kept waiting while Manuel rushed up to Ramos’s offices on the 50th floor to “greet” her.
In his most recent Budget speech Manuel thanked Ramos: “Finally, to my long suffering family – Maria, the boys, my Mom, my Sisters, Oupa and the extended family. Thank you” and recently Ramos told Business Report: “First and foremost, I am a professional person. I can’t pretend that the minister of finance isn’t my partner. I live my personal life with integrity”.
The ceremony took place on the Franschhoek wine farm L’Ormarins, owned by the Rupert Family, Panday said.
The couple said earlier this week that the ceremony would be attended only by family and a small group of invited guests and would be closed to the media.
Manuel and Ramos are believed to be on honeymoon in Cape Town.