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Pakes has a long anti apartheid struggle history. He was a founding member of various formations of the Mass Democratic Movement including Youth, Civic and Trade Unions and the UDF. Since it’s unbanning in 1990 he served in various senior responsibilities for the ANC until January 2009. He has a distinguished career a MEC since 1994 until 2009 and has been a COPE MPL since then to date. He was elected COPE National Chairperson in January 2014.
His Highest qualification is a Masters Degree in Governance and Political Transformation (UFS 2002) and still has a passion to pursue further education.