The new chairperson of the board of South African National Parks Ms Cheryl Carolus began her tenure at the helm of the country's premier conservation body in Pretoria this month. This follows her appointment by the Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism Marthinus van Schalkwyk last month after cabinet endorsed her nomination.
Ms Carolus' brief as chairperson of the board of SANParks, would be to ensure that the organisation fulfils its mandate of biodiversity management that entails the custodianship of the country's flora and fauna. She was previously chief executive of SA Tourism.
Outgoing chairperson, Mr Murphy Morobe – who now works as communications head in President Thabo Mbeki's office – was on hand to wish Ms Carolus well during a board meeting held at the SANParks head office in Pretoria.
Said Ms Carolus: "Coming from SA Tourism I understand the challenges facing this organisation. I feel honoured to have been asked to lead one of the indisputably leading treasures of this country.
"I feel daunted to be stepping into Murphy's shoes having worked closely with him in the past and knowing the passion and dedication with which he served his term. I am very excited at the opportunity to work with such a sterling team.
"I also come at an exciting time when on of our own, Mohammed Valli Moosa, has just been elected as president of the World Conservation Union – the IUCN. Our heartfelt congratulations go to him."
Both Ms Carolus and Mr Morobe further expressed their gratitude to Mr Zakhele Sithole who was acting chairperson for the past three months.