SANParks appoints new CEO

Oct 27, 2014

SANParks has appointed new Chief Executive Officer, Fundisile Mketeni. He takes over from Dr Nomvuselelo Songelwa, who was the Acting CEO after Abe Sibiya completed the maximum six months in the role and returned to his position as Managing Executive: Kruger National Park.

Cabinet approved the appointment of Mketeni on a five-year contract at its meeting on October 22.

Mketeni has spearheaded the country's biodiversity agenda for the last 10 years as the Deputy Director General responsible for Biodiversity and Conservation in the Department of Environmental Affairs. He holds a Masters Degree in Environmental Management and has 25 years' experience in the field of Environmental Management and Biodiversity and Conservation.

He started his career as a Trainee Manager for some of the Eastern Cape Reserves, later moving to SANParks as Park Manager of the Addo Elephant National Park. He worked in Addo at a time when major tourism development, concession and community beneficiation initiatives were being undertaken.

Mketeni’s career at SANParks saw him serve as the Chief Operating Officer for the 19 National Parks, except the Kruger National Park, and as Executive Director: Parks, before taking up the position of Deputy Director General: Biodiversity and Conservation in the Department of Environmental Affairs in 2004. He has played an instrumental role in the development and implementation of South Africa’s rhino anti-poaching legislation and policies, and headed the Rhino Issue Management Process

“The Department would like to thank Mr Mketeni for his excellent service and dedication to the conservation of our rich biological diversity,” said a statement from the Department of Environmental Affairs. “We are looking forward to working with Mr Mketeni as he moves SANParks into the future. In the face of the ongoing challenges of rhino poaching, we have faith in Mr Mketeni’s abilities to address the scourge head-on.”

Mketeni said:  “I welcome the confidence placed in me by the SANParks Board, the Minister and the country as a whole. I am committed to continuing with the good work and also to positioning the organisation as a lead agent in conservation nationally, regionally and globally.”

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