Lt Gen Temba Templeton Matanzima was born on 02 February 1953 at Cofimvaba in the Eastern Cape. His primary education was done at the following schools: Ntlonze, Mhlobo, and Tsakane. He completed his secondary School at Rhoda (now Daliwonga) High School). Lt Gen Matanzima completed his matric (Std 10) at Jongilizwe College at Tsolo in 1976. On 17 January 1977, he joined Transkei Defence Force. He completed his basic training and advance training in the following year. He was commissioned on 18 August 1978. He completed Officers course, Platoon Commanders course and Company Commanders course in Mthatha at 1 Transkei Battalion. During September 1991 General Matanzima attended a conference as a delegate where the Peace Accord was signed in Johannesburg. He also attended Codesa I in December 1991 and Codesa II in May 1992 as a delegate. He was a member of the Joint Military Coordinating Council (JMCC) in Februay 1994 which paved the way for the establishment of the new Defence Force in April 1994. The Senior Command and Staff Course was completed in Accra, Ghana in 1992/1993. Defence studies were completed at the Royal College of Defence Studies in 1995 in London in the United Kingdom.
Lt Gen Matanzima completed a number of certificates and Diplomas
– Certificates in Defence Management – Wits University
– Diploma in Public Management and Administration in Ghana Institute of Public Management and Administration in Accra – Ghana
– Completed eight courses at the University of Transkei
– Post Graduate Diploma in Strategic Studies with PALAMA
– Masters in Management and Development – Potch University – 2005
He progressed through the Military ranks until he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier in 1987 and appointed Chief of Staff of TDF under Maj Gen H.B. Holomisa.
In May 1993 he became a Major General and appointed Chief of Transkei Defence Force. In January 1996 he assumed his duty as GOC of Eastern Province Command.
In July 1998 he was appointed Chief of Army Staff Personnel (Chief Director Corporate Services).
In December 1999 he was promoted to the rank of Lt General and became Chief of Defence Personnel and after some restructuring he became Chief of Joint Support. In 2004 he was appointed Chief of Corporate Staff.
In 2005-2007 he again became Chief of Human Resources.
In September 2007 he was then appointed Chief of Joint Operations.
Lt Gen Matanzima has acted as the Secretary of Defence in 2010 and in December 2010 he acted as the Chief of the National Defence Force until May 2011. Currently employed as a Military Ombudsman since 12 May 2012.
Lt Gen Matanzima has been awarded the Unitas Medal, 10 years Service Medal (Bronze), 20 years Service Medal (Silver) and 30 years.
Lt Gen Matanzima enjoys athletics, rugby, hunting and golf.
He is married to Noxolo neé Nqunqa who is a nursing tutor and they are blessed with five children.
During his employment in the Defence Force he visited the following countries: Tanzania, Mozambique, Ghana, Namibia, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland, Sudan, Algeria, Central African Republic, Kenya, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Chilla, Russia, Taiwane, United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada, Germany, France, Norway, Austria, Ireland.