The feisty Madonsela is the sixth recipient of the accolade‚ which was announced at an award ceremony in Kenya on Thursday evening.
According to Sowetan, Madonsela graced the awards in a flowing silk red gown with detailed lace patterns.
“Thanks @forbesafrica for an awesome evening and everything regarding #POY16‚” Madonsela tweeted.
Forbes said Madonsela was the winner of the award because for her bravery “in her quest to bring inconsistencies to the fore”.
She beat two African presidents‚ a fellow South African and a country.
Fellow nominees for the Person of the Year award included Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli‚ Mauritian President Ameenah Gurib‚ fellow South African and founder of Capitec Bank Michiel le Roux‚ and the people of Rwanda.
The first winner of the Person of the Year award was former Nigeria central bank governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi‚ now Muhammad Sanusi II‚ emir of Kano.
2012 winner – James Mwangi‚ chief executive of Equity Bank‚ Kenya
2013 winner – Akinwumi Adesina‚ the Minister of Agriculture in Nigeria and now head of the African Development Bank
2014 – Aliko Dangote‚ chairperson and chief executive of the Dangote Group‚ Nigeria
2015 – Mohammed Dewji‚ chief executive of MeTL Group‚ Tanzania
2016 – Thuli Madonsela‚ former public protector of South Africans