Nine South Africans, including President Jacob Zuma and DA leader Helen Zille, made the list of global magazine Foreign Policy's 500 most powerful people.
"Think of it as a list of all the most important other lists," it said on its website.
"[It is] our inventory of the people who control the commanding heights of the industries that run the world, from politics to high finance, media to energy, warfare to religion."
Foreign Policy describes itself as a global magazine on politics, economics, and ideas.
Other South Africans on the list include State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele, Transparency International managing director Cobus de Swardt, Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and BHP Billiton CEO Andrew Mackenzie.
Foreign Affairs Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane and United Nations high commissioner for human rights Navi Pillay also made the list.
South African-born and raised entrepreneur Elon Musk, who co-founded PayPal and founded SpaceX, made it onto the list, but as an American entrepreneur.
The "power keys" according to which the 500 were judged include good, evil, politics, money, brains, bully pulpit, and force.
Other Africans who made it onto the list include Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, Gambian International Criminal Court prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and Nigerian Dangote Group CEO and president Aliko Dangote.
On the list are American President and first lady, Barack and Michelle Obama, former British prime minister Tony Blair, Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama, head of the Catholic Church Pope Francis, and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Various business people and founders, including Bill Gates, Google CEO Larry Page and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, also made the list.